Canadian long weekends and cottages are pretty much synonymous.
And if you (or your parents) don’t own one yourself, a cottage invite is always welcomed.
But if you want to be invited back, just make sure you’re not “that” guest.
1. That Person Who Shows Up Empty-Handed
If you wouldn’t show up at someone’s home empty-handed for a dinner party, why would you even think to show up to someone’s cottage without things like groceries, booze, and even your own sunscreen and products? It’s a cottage, not a hotel.
2. That Belligerent Drunk
Aside from the whole liability factor (you don’t want anyone drowning or falling in the fire) the worst thing about a belligerent drunk at the cottage is there’s no escaping them. While it’s one thing to enjoy a few drinks, it’s just not a good look to be stumbling around in a stupor.
3. That Person Who Doesn’t Pitch In
Sure, cottage kitchens are pretty small and can get crowded pretty easily if there are too many people inside. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t pitch in as much as you can when it comes to the cooking and cleaning. You’re not in a bed and breakfast, so don’t expect for one second to be waited on.
4. That Person Who Doesn’t Realize Boat Gas is Damn Expensive
For most of us, boating is a novelty that could very well be the highlight of the weekend – especially if you’re a fan of watersports. But boat gas is super expensive, so don’t expect your hosts to want to spend every waking moment out on the water. And if you hit the marina for gas, make it your treat.
5. That Couple Who Has Loud Sex
If you’re going to have sex at a cottage remember one thing: unless your “cottage” involves a Muskoka mansion, the walls are probably incredibly thin. Meaning, if you’re going to have loud, wild sex, everyone is going to hear you. Don’t make them listen.
6. The Person Who Can’t Go Without Technology
We all know how annoying it is when the cell phones come out during dinner. Not only is it blatantly rude, the culprit is clearly not in the moment if their eyes are glued to the screen. It’s one thing to whip out your phone and capture an epic tube ride on video, but quite another if you’re the guest who can’t part with their smartphone all weekend long.
7. That Person Who Can’t Sit Still
Part of the beauty of a cottage weekend involves doing nothing at all aside from sitting still in your thoughts – whether you’re staring at the lake or at the fire. Someone who is unable to turn off their thoughts, sit still, and enjoy the perfect simplicity of the setting has the type of energy that’s going to rub off on other guests.
8. That High Maintenance Princess or Prince
There are few things more annoying than that high maintenance guest who expects the cottage to have the same trappings of a luxury hotel. You know, the type who complains abut everything from the limited hot water or lack of a dishwasher to having nothing to do. Oh, and they’re surprised to find mosquitos exist at the cottage.
9. That Person Who Brings an Extra Guest Along
When it comes to cottage guests, the host has likely given consideration to the people they want to share one of their precious weekends of summer with, along with the group dynamics. They’ve planned for meals with a specific number of guests in mind. Meaning, it’s probably not going to go over well if you ask to bring someone else along last minute. While bringing someone unannounced is pretty much unforgivable.
10. That City Slicker Turned Country Star
There are few things more annoying at the cottage than that city person who suddenly becomes an outdoor ‘expert’ the second he or she arrives at the cottage just because he or she may have been a Girl Guide or Cub Scout back in the day, or the ‘coolest’ person in their cabin at summer camp.
11. That Person Who Expects the Host to Double as a Camp Counselor
The absolute worst type of cottage guests are those who fail to recognize that the hosts are on vacation as well. Meaning, it’s not their job to act as a camp counselor, or source of endless amusement and entertainment. Take the initiative to find your own things to do – even if that means sitting on a dock or the hammock with a trashy magazine.
12. That Person Who Doesn’t Say Thank You
After your friends or family have opened up their summer home to you for the entire weekend when you’d otherwise be stuck in the city, the least you can do is follow up with a heartfelt thank you, whether in the form of an email, or – more effectively – a hand-written note. Unless, of course, you don’t ever want to be invited back.