a straight-forward take on "hostelling"
Q. So… I’m finally planning my trip to Bend! Why should I stay at a "hostel"?
A. Great question, Oprah. Have you ever considered a career in journalism?
Q. Seriously, I need a place to crash. Why Bunk+Brew over a hotel/motel? Or perhaps just a night in the back of my car?
A. Are you kidding? Sleeping in the back seat would likely land your face squarely inside one of several fast food wrappers dating back to 2006. Do you really want to breathe in the scent of George W. Bush-era burritos all night? Plus, cars get really cold. Or hot.
Q. Got it.
A. You’re welcome.
Q. Well, why not a hotel/motel, or an Airbnb?
A. You must have a lot of extra cash to blow. Have you checked lodging rates in Bend? Pretty pricey. That's money coming right out of your beer budget. Sure, you might get a bathrobe, but try wearing that on your river trip. Or on the slopes. You didn’t come all the way to Bend for a bathrobe, did you?
Q. That depends. Are we talking high-quality terry cloth?
A. Look. You came here for an adventure. Not to sit around by yourself in a bathrobe and watch “The Matrix” on pay-per-view.
Q. Hey! That’s my favorite movie.
A. Listen. Hotels and motels are so 2016, and you won't meet other travelers at an Airbnb. This is a new era, my friend. Here’s how it works. You roll up to Bunk+Brew late afternoonish -- a little tired but open for whatever. First. Look around. You’re in an actual historic brick house built in 1910. That's ancient, like before foosball tables. But it feels like home. Off come the shoes. Up go the feet. And suddenly there’s a free beer in your hand as you chat up a complete stranger who shares your dream of trekking the Camino de Santiago. Not a likely scenario at your stuffy hotel (or crummy motel).
Q. Did you say *free* beer?
A. Yes. But that's not all. Soon enough, you'll be hitting the town.
Q. We’re going out???
A. Hahaha. That’s the best part. Remember. You’re not stuck inside an airtight, 175 square-foot bedroom all by yourself. Where would you go? What would you do? And whom would you do it with?
Q. I don’t know. I’m pretty shy, especially when it comes to approaching anyone resembling other people.
A. That’s my point. Once you check in, everyone’s your friend. That includes your hosts, other guests, and locals too. You never know who’s gonna walk through that door. Forget those awkward moments at the lobby bar. You’re already drinking and chatting with buddies you didn’t know you had only moments ago.
Q. One time I met an insurance salesman from Ohio by a hotel ice machine. But OK. What’s next?
A. Lucky for you, you’re already in downtown Bend. Not sure where to go? No problem. Just follow your hosts Frankie and Jota. More often than you'd think, there’s a festival in town and parties spilling into the streets. If not, these guys have a pulse on every happy hour in Bend. And just like that, your big night’s underway!
Q. Who are these mythical hosts?
A. Glad you asked. Frankie and Jota are bona fide Bend legends... or will be soon, once all their stories leak out. I don’t claim to know their secrets, but I can tell you this: I've been fortunate enough to cross their paths, and I assure you, they will lead you to the right people and the right places. No question.
Q. Can you tell them apart?
A. The easy way? Frankie talks faster than you can process. Good luck keeping up. Jota is like an early-career Johnny Depp. He’s the reserved one. Both are incredibly knowledgeable and happy to help.
Q. So I either try this hostel thing or...
A. Or wander aimlessly down the hallway of your hotel/motel.
Q. And no new friends.
A. No new friends.
Q. And no Frankie and Jota??
A. No Frankie and Jota.
Q. OK. I’m in.
A. Great. Just click here to book. You'll love it!