We booked with Airbnb for a family business trip at a farm. The pictures online looked charming and cozy. We pulled up the driveway to see three vicious looking pit bulls surrounding our vehicle barking incessantly. The owner was nowhere in sight and two of our children were so petrified of the dogs they refused to leave the vehicle. After we pealed them off the seats and as we met the host, on our way to the house ,she announced that the cold water wasn’t working properly. We walked in the door and were slapped in the face by this potpourri odor, filling the house like a pungent fart. We started to walk through the house and noticed cell phones propped up on their window ledges. One pit bull started barking as it followed us through the house. As we went up the stairs the dog upchucked. The stairs were steep, uneven, winding, and had no handrails; it felt like we were going up into an attic.
We stood outside the bedroom doors as the host was talking. Meanwhile the dog started barking again, upchucking yet again on the floor. As we entered the room the host mentioned that the overhead light was broken and that we had to stand on the futon bed to screw the bulb in and out to get any light. None of this is a joke. They said that they had a TV, but it wasn’t set up, just connected to a DVD player; they don’t believe in watching television. They listed they had an iron, but they have no ironing board (they don’t iron clothes) and the only place to iron was on their kitchen table being used as a poker table that night. They agreed our family of seven could stay when they had four in their own family and only one shower available for 11 people. The master bedroom had no door knob, and there were no blinds or shades for the windows. Next we noticed the window wide open in the bedroom when it was 30 degrees outside. There were no sheets on the bed as she was still drying them.
She proceeded to tell us that there is no landline phone and if we need to call from our cells, we must prop them up on the window ledge and place on speaker phone. Nice private calls; there must have been a trick to it as we never figured it out. By the way, they never lock their doors… ever. At that point we began to think we were either going to be the next episode of Criminal minds or that John Quiñones would jump out announcing “What Would You Do?” and we’d all have a great laugh.
That didn’t happen. Instead we tried to remain positive until we shut the window to attempt to MacGyver a phone call. It was then that it all started coming clear to us why exactly there was this strong odor of potpourri wafting through the air. I sat on the bed, and instantly smelled the noxious – and I mean noxious – odor of dog breath. I seriously think the dogs took residence upon the bed we were about to sleep. I looked at my husband and he said, “Grab your stuff everyone, we’re getting out of here!” We shoved our stuff in our pillow cases and ran for the car. Thank God there was a Holiday Inn down the road. We literally hugged the bed in appreciation of getting out of that situation alive. When we originally pulled in, we saw they had a bonfire going. We now wonder if they were burning the bones of their last Airbnb guests and if the dog was throwing up his victim meal from the night before…