All that moving around has helped me develop a greater appreciation for local hotels and inns. Recently I returned to the Sweetwater Branch Inn, where I have enjoyed the hospitality before. This time I had a little cottage all to myself, cozy enough that I wished I'd had more time to spend there. And oh my, someday I will devote a few thousand words to the pleasures of a real cast iron tub that you can fill up to your neck. Bath perfection.
Then there's the Fox Den Country Inn, a much more locally flavored place that has become one of my favorite overnights. From the initial novelty of "everything you'd expect for $60 a night," I have learned to appreciate the subtle and not-so-subtle joys of a place that is incredibly clean and welcoming, even if the towels don't quite match.
I realized I'd become a fan of the Fox Den when I was trying to explain to a friend how the check-in process works, and caught myself saying enthusiastically, "I've never even seen the owners. It's like Beauty and the Beast. You come to the door all grimy and exhausted, and invisible servants take care of your every need." Definitely something mythic going on there, and towels have very little to do with it.
Later this month I will adventure to a new place that also promises to be uniquely enjoyable: The Sands of Treasure Island. Classic Midcentury Modern architecture and right on the beach! I am very much looking forward to a dose of Gulf-side sunshine.
Perhaps followed by an evening on the patio with pigs-in-a-blanket and a pitcher of martinis, just to stay in the spirit of things.