Sunday, April 5, 2009

A bed and breakfast's history.

Our top-floor Shangri-La Suite room is progressing towards a green nirvana. Insulation has been laid in the attic crawlspaces and the attic hatch-doors lined and weatherstripped. The walls and ceiling of the new wetbar have also been stuffed.

From a decorating point of view, we have now exposed the lovely, old chimney brick in the wetbar. We found two sets of carefully inscribed initials pencilled on the brick. Judging from the penmanship and the fact that they have been encased in lath and plaster for more than a century, I imagine they belong to some of the first builders. Everyone likes to leave their mark on posterity.

In addition, we managed to save the oldest layer of brittle wallpaper. It reveals that the room was dressed in a pale blue and rose trellis pattern with climbing roses in the pattern. I am somewhat surprised at the original elegance of this third floor bedroom. I am also pleased because directly, below this dormer window, there is an ancient rose standing against the house - pale pink , sweet and worthy of the Guinness Book of Records at over 16 feet high.

And of course, history tells us about the people who lived before us. When we removed the hand-built kitchenette counter , probably dating from the 1940's, we found two empty "mickeys" of Captain Morgan's Black Label Rum , tucked underneath the floor of the cupboard. Long ago, a very mellow carpenter must have entertained himself while he worked upstairs and left a different kind of mark for posterity.

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