The car climbed up the road as the mist began to billow around us. There’s peace here in the Highlands, I thought, punching the gas pedal to get to the green arrow in time. This is the perfect place to write a novel.
Autumn had painted the tops of trees orange — at least the ones under the blanket of evergreens. We pulled into the parking lot of the new building and got out, toy figures inching toward a steel, timber and glass citadel. It seemed to have grown out of the pines.
Once inside, warmth everywhere. A gas fireplace built into a wall of brown stone bricks stood before spotless sofas and designer chairs.
Polished marble tiles shining from skylights fifty feet above led us past a gift store with whiskey soapstones, crystal wine glasses, turquoise and amethyst and other glittering colors under glass cases. Artisanal chocolates and market-fresh flowers teemed from baskets and shelves.
A café was in full bustle, with the smell of coffee being ground, organic eggs being cracked onto a spotless griddle, and oven-baked rolls being carried out for a morning crowd.
A piano song in a contemplative minor key meandered through every corridor of the atrium. I looked out the window, down into the valley. The fog encased the wall of glass but I could still see the rise of the nearby mountains.
This is where people go to get inspired, I thought.
If only I could come here every day, stake out a ten-by-ten corner near one of the towering steel supports that lead up to the intricate paneled wood of the ceiling, passing the framed, clean splashes of color on the abstract canvases along the way.
Maybe I could settle right by the built-in aquarium and observe the quiet movements of tropical fish to carry me from one page to the next. If I stayed there a month, maybe I’d eventually take a spot on every cushioned, patterned chair or loveseat for hours at a time.
I stopped dreaming at the ding. My wife’s appointment with the ophthalmologist was beginning, and the elevator to the fifth floor had arrived.
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