Well, we liked this hotel so much we decided to stay a second night. It’s the Hotel Morand and its a really old building. Our room is three flights up a very cute winding staircase.
I think I like the hotel because it reminds me of the house I grew up in, in Cashel. It’s got sloping, creaky floors, old wallpaper on the walls and has probably looked the same for a 100 years – it’s got character.
Of course when I was younger I didn’t appreciate the character of our house. It was already at least a 100 years old at the time. As a teenager I thought everyone else lived in newer, fancier houses and ours was old, creaky and the floors sloped! The furniture was from the ark and the bathroom was two flights up.
Then I went to college in Limerick and that first summer I brought a friend, Jean, home for the weekend. It was revelation to see the house through her eyes. The size of the rooms, “you’d fit our whole house into this sitting room”. The height of the ceilings – “wow”. The views from the top floor, “you can see the Rock of Cashel from your bath!”. The furniture “everything here looks like an antique, it’s beautiful”. She didn’t seem to notice the creaks or the slopes or the peeling wallpaper.
She noticed the character.
Now in Rouen I notice the character of this house and I remember the character of that house and I consider the character trait of noticing the beautiful.