My son is a huge basketball fan. I brought him with me on a trip to Philadelphia and took him to a 76ers game. At first he was a bit leery of staying in a stranger’s home, but it was Rocky’s old neighborhood, and the host had two dogs! Animals are probably the only thing he likes more than basketball. He’s like a little Francis of Assisi--I've seen him pet the Queens Pelicans or hold a bird in his hand.
The host was a young married woman whose mother was visiting while we were there. Like all of the other Airbnbs I’ve visited, I explained who I was and asked if I could take pictures to use as a source for paintings. They both obliged and we sat down in the living room to converse. The young woman was friendly and engaged. Her mother was glued to her smart phone screen.
People love their screens. I completely understand that having pictures taken is intimidating and can make people feel self-conscious. Personally in that situation, I always look land feel like Sean Penn in I Am Sam. The home has traditionally been a very private space, but that is changing with things like Airbnb. The living room is becoming increasingly more public and “shared” and the cell phone is the place that feels most private.