June 13 2012 by Bryson Forbes
I am only days away from my annual golf retreat. This year we have twenty-eight guys and are heading up to the Muskoka region of Ontario for 3 days and 3 nights of great friends, good food and mediocre golf! I should clarify the golf courses are among the most beautiful in Canada, it's the golfers that don't do the game justice. Nevertheless it's an event I look forward to for months!
The second biggest challenge behind keeping your golf ball in play is sharing accommodations with three other friends for 72 hours. If you find yourself in this position here are my five tips to survive:
Ambient noise - last year we had a new roommate on the trip and he was the best (meaning the worst) snoring machine I have ever witnessed. Luckily one of the other guys travels with an oscillating fan wherever he goes. I was skeptical about it, but it definitely works! If you don't have one, there are a number of Apps for your smart phone that can play sounds to try to drown out the snoring. My favorite for my iPhone is iChillout, ninety-nine cents well spent.
Prepay - this can be tough to coordinate but with properties like Best Western, it's much easier because you are not going to get hit with charge after charge for amenities, like wireless Internet and parking that can sometimes cause issues when splitting out the cost. My advice is to assign one room captain, he usually puts his credit card down and then everyone else pay him more than they expect to pay in cash upfront. We all have different relationships with money and my advice is to try as hard as possible to make it a non-issue. If there are three in your room, a great way to pick the captain is to avoid the cheap one and the spender. Find the person in the middle.
Shower/Washroom schedule - with our golf event this is actually a huge pain. We are all getting up at the same time and need to be out the door pretty early. First one in the shower is guaranteed a better experience, so we find a fun way to determine the order. The best thing we implemented is the first one in has to go get coffee for the rest of the guys! Lastly be considerate. No one wants to start his or her day in a dirty and smelly bathroom.
Lights Out - believe it or not one of my friends likes to sleep with the light on. I on the other hand would prefer a cave with no light what so ever. The answer for me is an eye patch. It started on trips but I even use it occasionally at home if my wife is reading when I am ready for lights out.
Television - another tough one that can cause issues. I have no problem falling asleep with the TV on but some people hate it. It becomes like a form of ambient noise for me, but my advice is to talk about it and if someone has a problem with it, then the TV should stay off. If you are the type that needs the TV on, get your earphones and watch on an iPad, computer or even your smart phone!
Do you have any other strategies you can share to keep the peace on the road with friends?