Completed The Fundamentals of Hostessing Pt. 2

Tazrae decides to write down all she knows and has learned from her father about being a good hostess.

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Syka is a new settlement of primarily humans on the east coast of Falyndar opposite of Riverfall on The Suvan Sea. [Syka Codex]

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The Fundamentals of Hostessing Pt. 2

Postby Tazrae on November 2nd, 2021, 10:34 pm

Timestamp: 10th of Fall, 521 A.V.

Continued from: The Fundamentals of Hostessing Pt. 1


Tazrae inverted her wrist and stared at the mark there. She was one of those entrusted to control them. So far it hadn’t been needed… but the Goddess promised there would be a time it would be. Memories…. Creating them didn’t seem that hard for Tazrae. She could hand them a gentle snake and would bet none of the visiting guests had ever held a living rainbow in their hands. Humidity and heat that rung water out of the very air itself. Outdoor showers. Swimming in the sea and eating from the land… was all an adventure… and not at all safe unless someone experienced Syka was along for the trip.

Tazrae kept writing, getting all the thoughts in her head down on paper in a cohesive way.

“I can do this…” She muttered out loud before moving on to the next tip her father had given her. So far her journal on hostessing was growing thick with a lot of notes. It would be invaluable to anyone who joined her helping out around The Protea.

Marketh had constantly said ‘Know how to play…” It was one of his more infamous father quotes. And it had more than one meaning of course. He had implied that along with making memories, other activities guests could be involved in were things like games…. card games, wooden games like cribbage, chess, and checkers. Tazrae was never much for those things, but she did understand a lot of people loved playing such things. The other meaning ‘Know how to play….’ held was in singing, playing music, storytelling, dancing, and general bardic ventures.

Tazrae had taken that road enthusiastically. She still had every intention of putting a shelf of games in the main room of her Inn for the guests that liked to play, but far more important to her was the bardic arts. She loved singing at holidays and gatherings and kept a large repertoire of songs for such things. Taz also liked making new music and aspired to someday be that person that might write a song that spread throughout the known world.

Having Svefra made that dream possible since many stopped at Syka and often wandered by. They were good for hiring for short-term labor too if they were stopped at Syka to resupply and rest. That’s how Randal had built most of her Inn, using part of Marino’s family when they’d stopped by as short-term hired help. The Svefra were talented and often held surprising skills for those that only lived full time on the sea. In fact, Taz had learned a good bit of carpentry from the Svefra… a surprising skillset they were deft at.

Taz swirled the nib of her quill in the inkpot, quickly losing interest in writing now that it felt a whole lot like work. But there was a certain satisfaction to the fact that she’d filled a vast majority of the book with her father’s thoughts and wisdom. And the journal was something she could take care of and recopy – extending its life and thus extending the memory of her father – out as far as she could so the worry of his fading face and voice in her mind would be long past.
Image
"There's a place that I go that nobody knows. Where the rivers flow and I call it home.
And there's no more lies. In the darkness there's light.
And nobody cries. There's only butterflies..."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn
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Tazrae
Jungle Witch
 
Posts: 904
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Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
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The Fundamentals of Hostessing Pt. 2

Postby Tazrae on November 2nd, 2021, 10:37 pm

And still… she knew there was more she could learn. Taz tapped the nib on the edge of the ink well to remove the excess dark liquid, and then flipped back to her bullet list. She added another aspect to it quickly.

“Absorb Sound, Don’t Create It.” Marketh often chanted that one, reminding Tazrae that listening was often so much better than speaking. She didn’t like filling awkward silences with the sound of her own voice, so she took this mantra to heart and listened more than she spoke as often as she could. It helped if she was able to keep her hands busy with baking or cooking… or even folding line-dried towels and sheets for the rooms as someone else felt the need to talk.

Thinking deeper, Taz set down her quill and looked thoughtfully at nothing at all, her mind traveling back.

Her father had a lot to say about listening, in fact. “People who are often driven to get away from their lives a while also have a need for people to just listen to them. Sometimes it's their job that’s awful and other times it’s a play of give and take – listening to advice or gifting it. But regardless of whether it's soul-searching, problem or puzzle-solving, advice and speculation, sometimes people just need a wide-eyed non-judgmental stranger to simply listen to them.” Tazrae understood that inherently.

She supposed it was something of an artform that Innkeepers needed to develop. People in professions like her own needed to understand when people really had to get their thoughts across. A good hostess knows when someone just needs to vent or when advice or reaction is necessary. There was a fine art to slip in comments to drive a person to speak more… things like ‘I did not know that!’ or noises of sympathy or disbelief in a situation being explained.

There was a term for it her father had taught her… active listening. It was the ability to remain helpful by simply being a sounding board and remaining nonjudgmental and supportive. She had often, since opening her Inn, had been told people had a relaxing de-stressing time spending an evening talking by the fire on the big covered porch when she’d just remembered listening.

Comments like “I had a great time…” were often the results of a good listening session. Taz supposed it was part of the whole making memories for people. And truthfully, it meant a lot to her that people could open up to her. It was one of her main rules though. If someone told her something, she did not repeat it… at all ever. Not unless someone asked her too.

Picking up her discarded quill, Taz began to write the thoughts down. It took her a few minutes to organize the information in a way a stranger unfamiliar with herself or Marketh could understand. She sectioned out her thoughts, added examples from her own life, and in general conveyed what listening meant… really listening that was.
Image
"There's a place that I go that nobody knows. Where the rivers flow and I call it home.
And there's no more lies. In the darkness there's light.
And nobody cries. There's only butterflies..."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn
User avatar
Tazrae
Jungle Witch
 
Posts: 904
Words: 1290006
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Journal
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Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

The Fundamentals of Hostessing Pt. 2

Postby Tazrae on November 2nd, 2021, 10:39 pm

Taz took a break, got up, and poured herself a glass of fruit juice chilled from the icebox. Then she picked up a leftover sweet roll from breakfast and nibbled it as she looked over what she’d written. The journal still had plenty of room in it. She thought about what else was important to her father as she sipped the refreshing pineapple juice and nibbled the treat.

‘Share the wealth.’ Indeed. Taz flipped back to her list and added the concept to the bottom of the list on one of the first pages of the journal. “A person who gives is a person who receives, Tazrae.” Her father used to say. “I don’t mean things that are expensive. I’m talking about things that cost you next to nothing coin-wise but are of massive value to others. Can you think of some of those things?” He’d questioned her.

Taz surprisingly knew what he was talking about. “Your time… give to your community so you feel part of something bigger and get some social interaction, something we don’t normally get stuck at home taking care of guests.” She’d answered him, even though she was only about ten years of age. Marketh had nodded and looked pleased.

“Also things like compliments, inexpensive or homemade gifts, or provide your guests with a map of the city or a thoughtful touch like a list of exotic places to eat or shop. Invite them to join you on an excursion such as a walk, or even things that might be chores to you but a whole lot of fun and something new for them.” Marketh had examples of things in Riverfall, but here in Syka, Tazrae had found that guests often loved tossing out the crab pots and nets, hauling them up weighed down and loaded, or even going to dig clams or hunt for lobster with snorkeling gear.

It was a chore for her, but a whole lot of fun for them … and the making of a memory. Fishing, paddle boarding, all that kind of thing was something Tazrae had learned her guests loved to do. Even midnight walks along the shore when the phosphorescent sea creatures were illuminating the waves made for thrilling romantic times for young couples as long as Tazrae stuck close and made sure they were wandering safer areas.

Taking another few minutes, she summed up this concept and included all the examples she’d thought of along with some of the ones Marketh had told her of when she was in Riverfall acting as an Innkeeper’s Daughter there.

Pleased, she noted her journal was getting thick with writing. It was what she wanted for herself as she set the quill aside and searched backwards in her mind, trying to capture more of her father’s wisdom. Something came to her then, a memory that jogged her attention. Riverfall was full of local customs and holidays, some of which the visitors had no idea about.
Image
"There's a place that I go that nobody knows. Where the rivers flow and I call it home.
And there's no more lies. In the darkness there's light.
And nobody cries. There's only butterflies..."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn
User avatar
Tazrae
Jungle Witch
 
Posts: 904
Words: 1290006
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Journal
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Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

The Fundamentals of Hostessing Pt. 2

Postby Tazrae on November 2nd, 2021, 10:41 pm

Re-dipping the quill, Tazrae added another thing to the list. “Get Guests Involved In The Local Flavor/Doings”. People in new areas often had no idea of new traditions. Riverfall had seasonal holidays that were unique to the city. Syka was no different. They had ten-day gatherings every ten days, and Tazrae had taken to gathering her guests and herding them the direction of the celebration since they tended to have a good time. Ten-day was – as its name implied – a gathering every ten days where the denizens of Syka checked in on each other and had a giant potluck with music, dancing, and storytelling. The news was exchanged, plans were made and new members of the community were introduced. It was usually a fun time that involved food and drink, music, and a whole lot of social interaction. Taz had warmed up to the goings-on quickly.

That thought lead to another and before Taz put her quill pen down, she kept writing, launching into another important concept. It wasn’t a hard one, though it was one that needed to be dealt with delicately. Not every place had established holidays and some holidays were few and far between. There was an easy solution for that situation. Holidays and Special Occasions could be made up at any time for any reason. Events appealed to people because it gave them an atmosphere of togetherness, fun, and sometimes surprises. The act of gathering food or foraging could be an event of importance. A simple random date on a calendar could also be assigned as a special day and made the most of.


A holiday was just basically a state of mind. They often soothed the sources o stress and added a distraction to get a kick about. All she truly had to do was create her own ritual celebrations and make them manifest by adding them to her schedule. Marketh had even had a formula for it. One simply created, interacted, and apricated. It was better if there were surprises thrown in for flavoring… and as her father said, always lead with her heart when crafting these situations for everyone to enjoy.

“Lead With Your Heart” It was so true of the situation. Tazrae went ahead and added it to her list. Then she sat back and thought about what that meant. Do things for the right reasons, of course… for good reasons that made sense for the well-being and wholesome experience of the people that opted to shelter beneath her roof. They would come to her for a reason. Make sure that reason was one that aligned with her heart and soul so that the experiences she created and enjoyed were aligned with her personality and motivations.

Speaking of motivations.; people wanted to pay her to take care of them, but sometimes extras were nice. Giving gifts was one of those fun things Tazrae loved to do. And sometimes people came to Syka ill-prepared for the situation here. The young Innkeeper started writing a section to her journal where she talked about gift baskets she often left in the rooms of new guests. She included thoughtful things like insect repellent for ventures into the jungle… or sunscreen lotion for lounging on the beach. Local fruits could be introduced and added to the baskets so guests could sample them in their downtimes of an evening or in the morning if it was too early for Taz to have tea and breakfast on the table.
Image
"There's a place that I go that nobody knows. Where the rivers flow and I call it home.
And there's no more lies. In the darkness there's light.
And nobody cries. There's only butterflies..."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn
User avatar
Tazrae
Jungle Witch
 
Posts: 904
Words: 1290006
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Journal
Plotnotes
Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

The Fundamentals of Hostessing Pt. 2

Postby Tazrae on November 2nd, 2021, 10:47 pm

Tazrae liked rituals and though she already had talked about rituals and gifting, she also liked to include small empty glass jars with solid cork closures. She often hand-wrote notes to attach to the bottles that asked guests to go collect sand from Syka’s beaches to take home with them for a special keepsake from their time in Syka. It was another thing she added to the gift basket she’d often leave in the rooms. Sometimes she’d add a silk bag – rough-hewn – with little twine drawstrings that folks could gather shells to fill with. Taz was sentimental borderline sappy and wasn’t ashamed that she was so.

And so, taking a few minutes, she grabbed more ink on her quill and began to summarize the idea of gifting from the heart and in doing so creating memories, holidays, and keepsakes for guests to enjoy for years to come after their vacations in Syka. Tazrae’s livelihood was going to depend on people coming to Syka to take a look around. And whether or not they gave her a good reputation was going to depend on whether she showed them a good time by being spontaneous and creating a joyful experience for her guests to escape into during their time in Paradise.

And finally, Taz decided, wrapping up her work… she needed to remind anyone who might read this of one more thing. The reason she had an Inn at all and was able to be open for business was that guests came in the first place and trusted her enough to let her be a part of their vacation or travel. She needed to be thankful for that. So Taz dipped her pen and then dipped her head to write in a few last paragraphs on being thankful to guests and how to indeed show that thanks.

To Tazrae, the thanks were in the details. She reminded people, and herself as her father had when he’d taught her such things… that the details were important. Express thanks for a guest's actions, or recount a funny moment with the guest, or express appreciation for a recipe shared or a private joke revealed. Comment with compliments that are sincere and appreciative.

Tazrae could even retain addresses of people as they dropped into the Inn and signed her guestbook so in the years to come she could send them little notes or inform them of events the Inn might be hosting in case they wanted to come for the festivities. After writing the section of her journal, Tazrae flipped back and titled it as it was meant to be: “Always Thank The Guests And Show Gratitude.”




Word Count: 2565
Image
"There's a place that I go that nobody knows. Where the rivers flow and I call it home.
And there's no more lies. In the darkness there's light.
And nobody cries. There's only butterflies..."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn
User avatar
Tazrae
Jungle Witch
 
Posts: 904
Words: 1290006
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Journal
Plotnotes
Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)


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