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Bad experience in Cobourg, Ontario

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WS Member Imagen de Alan and Jayne Yockey
Bad experience in Cobourg, Ontario

Host forgot we were coming and was away. Asked his son to host us. Son was very nice but was not prepared. Not a surprise. Offered us a blow up bed. No batteries. Spent $20 on batteries since we had to go to a convenience store at 10 pm. The bed leaked. 45 minutes later we were sleeping on the floor. Host name is Randy Albon. I would definitely skip this host.
Also the location is far from town. The son was willing to drive but otherwise food would have been a problem.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member

Hello Alan and Jayne,

I can imagine that you were disappointed that the host forget you were coming!
That isn't nice.

But well, if it's necessary to skip the host immediatly (I don't know if he has more negative feedback)?

Seems like the son was really helpfully with his unexpected guests.

And I don't know what kind of appointment you made before, but maybe it's always better to have some food with you for unexpected situations.

The host doesn't have to cook for you and so on, and seems really great that the son even bring you to town. That's really helpfull.

Well, I hope in the future you've less complicated meetings with the hosts.

Have nice trips.


WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Bad Experience

Hey Guys, I am sorry to hear of your disappointment and frustration with the hosting. As Randy has indicated, this is not the most fruitful venue for your comments. In addition, Astrid is probably correct in crediting the son for his un-scheduled efforts. Perhaps a note to the father expressing your disappointment in a passive way would also have some positive results. All up, the Warmshowers community is a beautiful thing. Let's aim to keep it such with as much tolerence as we can muster. I hope your future experiences are all happy ones! Robert

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Host Weighing In

Hello, I am the host-in-question, Randy Albon and wish to add a few comments.
I am truly sorry that my oversight resulted in your great disappointment while staying in my home.
When I learned of your arrival and my absenteeism I worked very hard via email, phone calls, text messages etc. to coordinate and ensure that you had two options: both at my home with my adult son, or with an alternative host closer to town and all amenities (emails to which I received no response from your party--emails that I could forward you again if you wish). My son graciously extended his hospitality in our home, and even his own bedroom to you, not to mention driving you into town to a restaurant.

You stayed in my home, drank my beer, used my facilities, stored bikes & gear in my garage and were offered the use of our pool if you wished. All offered in the spirit of generosity. I notice that you have been members for about 4 weeks. Although it shows me being a member for three years I have actually been hosting folks much longer than that through the Warm Showers organization and each and every time have gone out of my way for fellow cyclists and will continue to do so ... tomorrow night as a matter of fact! I've never once received such criticism.

In the spirit of giving, I ask nothing of the guests to whom I open my home. In the years that I have hosted cyclists I have never even requested to be hosted. Warmshowers is a wonderful thing and I hope that such an insensitive review does not deter others from visiting me and my family in my countryside home for which I cannot make any apologies for it's location.

Happy Trails

Randy Albon

WS Member Imagen de WS Member

@Randy Albon: good to read your reaction, too. Later I was reading the recommends from other guests about, thay were long and very positive.
I hope other cyclists still will coming, too you. But I expect they will.
Maybe (but I don't know) it's possible to write a part of the text as a "follow up/explanation" in the recommends of yourselves; so people can make up their mind.

You wrote that you didn't get any reaction form Alan and Jayne for the fact that you tried to find a good alternative for them.
Well, I hope they will do now in this forum and/or direct to you, so the feelings for all of you will be better.

Wish you all nice cycling trips, guests and hosts!

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Cobourg Host

Thanks Astrid

Truth is I lost the better part of the nights sleep over this. I am somewhat in shock to be honest. I never once corresponded with Mr. Yockey but with one of his party Christian. Christian had told me in the original request that they were seasoned cyclists with "minimal needs". Mr. Yockey complained that my air mattress was not to his liking. Truth be told the mattress was in an unopened box never used with the sales receipt attached to be returned. It cannot be returned now, but I would be ok with that to help someone out. I however would have assumed that cyclists of minimal needs would carry a bed roll.
We furnished towels and bedding to all four cyclists. I tour with a pack towel and sleeping bag and a bed roll. No big deal ..... but to receive such a harsh review seems unfair.
Other things at my home we offered and used such as wifi for example. I am still highly surprised that someone I trusted to use my home while I away could be so unkind.
I guess I will have to edit my profile to explain Mr.Yockey's review as you suggest.

I will keep my chin up and continue to enjoy the rich experiences I enjoy in meeting many wonderful and kind people that pass through my neck of the woods.

Randy Albon

WS Member Imagen de julianne2saw

i NEVER provide towels, can barely do my own laundry and can't imagine long distance cyclists w/o a bed roll. Sounds like everyone stuck up for you tho. And letting four total and obviously strange folks in to you home is probably something that you shouldn't do again. All my guests have been self contained but the last call i had a few weeks ago was just annoying, so much loud music in the background that at first i couldnt even figure it out and then a stoned sort of voice saying, well, if i wasnt there that was Ok too. So i never answered. and it was on the day he wanted to stay over, I just ignore those now as a policy.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
English my post a lot of incorrect was late and for the Netherlands extremely warm (30 degrees) the brains aren't working well, haha ;-)

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Hi Randy, just reading their

Hi Randy, just reading their account of the situation, I don't think you should blame yourself too much. Your son did indeed help them out. I don't think Warm Showers guests should expect hosts to act like a free hotel. You did what you could considering the situation. Mistakes can happen but I always try reminding my host of my arrival 1 or 2 days before if I contacted them long before coming.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
I totally agree with u

I totally agree with u randy!
I have never used warm showers before
After cycling from Ireland to Australia but
What ur son offered was enought! I would
Be happy even to sleep in ur garage and would
Have my own food!! I think u done enought..
I think it's bad the people said ur name!!
Don't know what they were on abt battery's...
Best of luck!!

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Some people

No matter what kind of facilities are offered, they should be appreciated.

We do, as the alternative would be either nothing, sleeping in the rain, or spending big bucks on a room.

If a cyclists knows what they want/desire/demand, best not expect the host to have it waiting.
Get a room

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
Re: bad experience in Cobourg

I am also a Warm Showers host in Cobourg and personally know Randy. He is a warm, generous, and caring person who goes above and beyond what is required. I am one of the people Randy contacted to host these guests but was unable to. He did find another very nice couple who said they would, but then never heard back from the cyclists. At least his son took it on and quite graciously it sounds by even the guest's account, but who was to know a new air bed was going to leak? I also find it puzzling that the guest complains about the location as it's made very clear on the website. My Warm Showers experiences have all been very positive and I'm relieved not to have encountered this ungrateful guest.

WS Member Imagen de julianne2saw
Bad experience???

I am a host and have never had a guest ask for a bed or food (altho i had a lovely couple treat me to a restaurant and I once offered and bought a young fellow lunch as i took him along on my shopping trip and it was on sale). Actually tho, one guy who had made me very uncomfortable sorta tried to con me into paying for his restaurant meal but i didnt offer and didnt like it. I almost forgot about that. Sound s to me like a spoiled entitled person expecting free meals???... ??? and its not couch sitting, its warm showers. Too many have recently called on the day they wish to stay in the yard and i just dont answer anymore.

WS Member Imagen de marcus5979
bad experience

I had one experience with a guest whom suggested I needed to pay for a meal. When I signed up, I thought it was clear that a host is not obligated, unless this was clearly put in as a requirement from the guest. If that had been the case I would have declined, unless I knew this guest very well. I wish that warmshowers made it very clear to the guest that the host has absolutely NO IMPLIED DUTY to cover the expenses or feeding of a cyclist. I'm not saying a host should make the guest sleep in the barn with the pigs, just that they should not ask for a room from the Ritz Carlton.....with amenities !

WS Member Imagen de julianne2saw
Its usually pretty clear where a host is so why gripe about it?

You would have lived and bought some food at the next stop in the morning. why not use you own ground roll? and save 20 bucks?? Doesn t sound like you have any legitimate gripe frankly and "guests" like you give warmshowers a bad name.

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
negative feedback

I've just left some feedback for the Yockneys - I wrote that "I would give them a miss"...and explained why. On their profile, you can read the feedback they've given and I think future potential hosts would do well to know about that as it truly does speak for itself. (as IF a guest should expect a mattress of any kind!! Of course it's wonderful when there Dear Randi - chin up and all the power to you for not letting this - your own "bad experience" (not there's!) dissuade you from continuing on with the wonderful hospitality you give. - Alison and Chen

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
what can you expect as a guest?

Ì'm a little shocked (as a host)! Do I offer too little? I thought WSL is about to offer a little space on the floor to place (the guests) camping mat and provide access to shower and toilet. In the case here all this was provided - so the guest should be thankful. It seems self evident to me the guest cares himself for sleeping mat, towel, food and so on. It seems rude to me to come along without full equipment and force (!) the host to provide more than the minimum. The host should be free to offer more - but not forced.

Andreas - maybe I misunderstand the concept of WSL

Unregistered Imagen de anon_user

"45 minutes we were sleeping on the floor" - spoiled tourist

Thanks for the unfounded criticism of what appears to be a great host. You really made me laugh with your unreasonable expectations. Dont worry though, if you come by Chicago Ill host you. Just dont be pissed at me when my dog kicks you off the couch because youre a bigger bi**h then she is....

WS Member Imagen de WS Member
ungrateful guest!!!

People are quite different, no one can change them. Guest and host should have same value about life, it is the basic rule to be happy.

Host are quite nice, kind people at least.
Not everyone can be guest, Host should find good guest with open eyes!!!

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