The semester has begun and I’ve been swamped with work! Hardly have time to read a sentence of the book I’m currently reading and I’m just squeezing in time to write. Time for a break!
Last weekend I headed out to Bath and Washington, North Carolina for an overnight vacation. It was so wonderful!
Bath is a small town near the Pamlico River. It was North Carolina’s first town, officially established in 1705, and soon became North Carolina’s first port. The best thing I discovered about its history, though, was that it was one of my heroes, John Lawson (a Naturists in the late 17th century and author of A New Voyage to Carolina), who had actually settled and help lay out the town’s streets.
There are two houses you can take an inside tour of. The first is the Palmer-Marsh House. It was originally built by Michael Coutanch. The house structure is amazing. The front parlor was originally designed to be a merchant shop. And the chimney stacks on the eastern side of the house are fascinating. Built between the chimneys on each level of the house is a chimney closet. No one is sure what they were originally used for, but they are intriguing.
The second house on tour is the Bonner house. The Bonner house was built on the original site of John Lawson’s home. One can still find the chimney foundation between two trees on the property. In 1830, Joseph Bonner bought the lots and built the house currently standing today. Many of the house’s original features are still exhibited including the small blown-glass window panes where the women of the house scratched their names with their engagement rings, wide-board pine floors, and hand-carved mantels.
I unexpectedly found some inspiration while in Bath as well. One of the homes on the historic walking tour, just behind the Bonner House, was the exact house I pictured as the Wilson home in my Death’s Island series. Well, the exterior at least. The home is not open to the public.
The rest of the evening was spent in Washington, where I got to hang out at one of my favorite places, I Can’t Believe It’s a Book Store, as I waited to take the Ghost Walk. Honestly, the best place ever. The building was originally the old Bank of Washington. In the back is a little coffee shop where you can get your usual cup of coffee if you wish, but I much rather have a butterbeer. Yep, that’s right, the favorite beverage of wizards everywhere. Unfortunately they were out of ingredients that night, but I’m definitely will be returning to give it a try, after they restock from potions class.
The shop, itself, is awesome. Stuffed full of wonderful books and artistic pieces of work. I especially love the painted coin pendants that are sold. I got a Somaliland 10 shillings Scorpio, my zodiac sign, and it has been my favorite necklace ever since. And according to our ghostly guide of the night, the shop is also haunted. So, butterbeer, books, beautiful artwork, ghosts… you can see why this is like the perfect place for me.
Then there was the Ghost Walk tour during the nearly full moon. Mwahahaha. Our guide, Terry Rollins, is a wonderful story teller. We passed old houses with frightful tales, visited the haunted courthouse, and walked through a spooky graveyard as Terry weaved his magic art of storytelling for us. It was really a lot of fun and it is something the whole family can enjoy. Oh, and be sure to keep an eye out for the famous black cats of Washington. At night the streets fill with ferial cats and it’s considered lucky to spy a black cat. I, myself, saw four that night and I am feeling lucky already – that I got to spend a day in such a wonderful place.