Friday, April 3, 2009

"ONE OF THE BOYS"

As Director of Group Sales while working for the Manning family back in the early 1980's representing their motels and restaurants in Dennis Port on Cape Cod; I would coordinate the various motor coach groups that would visit each season. We primarily had senior citizen tours stay with us with many of the groups originating in Connecticut. One regular group we had visit us each season was the Bristol Seniors from Bristol, Connecticut.

With the frequent repeat groups such as the Bristol Seniors; we would get to know some of the people in the group in addition to the senior group leaders. One member of the Bristol Seniors was a man named "Billy".

Chris and Dick Manning the owners, and I used to joke around with "Billy" each time the Bristol group visited the Soundings motel, the oceanfront motel, where the Bristol group would stay each fall. Chris and Dick Manning would also have fun with Dick Carey who worked in the Soundings coffee shop along with his wife Ruth. Each season back then in the fall Chris and Dick Manning and Dick Carey would each take a large cylindrical silver fire extinguisher filled with pressurized water and run around outside on the motel grounds. They would play a variation of the "hide and seek" game with the fire extinguishers with the object being to spray each other with the fire extinguisher water.

One year Chris, Dick , and Dick were in the midst of playing their annual fire extinguisher game of trying to spray each other. Above one area of the Soundings non-ocean view rooms is a group conference room where we would host cocktail parties, bingo, clambakes, as well as small business meetings. The conference room has two sets of stairways. Chris Manning saw a man go up the back stairway who he thought was Dick Carey as it looked like him from the back. Chris let loose about a fifteen foot stream of cold fire extinguisher water all the way up the back side of this man. The man let out a loud yell of surprise upon being drenched from the fire extinguisher.

It turned out this man wasn't Dick Carey. It was "Billy" from the Bristol group. At first Chris thought to himself "Oh Oh" as it usually isn't a good idea for a motel owner to spray their guests with a fire extinguisher unless the guest is on fire. "Billy" however, after his initial surprise at being sprayed, thought that the situation was funny and liked being included in the fire extinguisher game and being treated as "one of the boys".