I hate to admit it but…

currently playing on my iPod: Awake My Soul by Mumford & Sons (thanks Robin!)

I adore libraries. The hushed, bump and shuffle noises. The aroma of 15 pound reference manuals printed in the ’50s. The common goal to leave each other alone for God’s sake. But today, I have to admit, I enjoyed internet research almost as much as a trip to the Franklin Main Branch.

Here’s how it went down: I was on the lookout for pictures of buildings that were around in the 13th c. in a little place called Saint Prest. I wanted to see the cathedral/or abbey/or chateau that my main character would have seen. I also wanted a feel for that French town just north of Chartres.

Well, after about two minutes on Google, I stumbled onto a video taken by two French tourists, staying at a B&B in Saint Prest. The video began with them driving down the crowded streets of the town, passing by the old church and the market. I could see how the shadows fell on the old wattle and daub buildings. I glimpsed the hills just beyond the town and the bright blue sky. The tourists then shared a meal with the owners of the B&B on camera. The ham was cut into large slabs and covered in cheese, I believe (my French needs some work). They drank small glasses of a nearly black red wine and nibbled on cooked round potatoes. The couple then discussed local cultural interests with the owners. I was able to understand that there was a concert that night at the cathedral in Chartres which required only a short drive to get there.

So, did I find exactly what I needed? Well, no, but I found some specific details that will enhance my fictional scene in Saint Prest. Will I check out those foods and research further into the building dates of those structures? Of course. But that short video, so easily found on the internet, gave me a feeling for the place. And that’s one of the big things I need to write. A feeling of place. 

In conclusion, though I hate to admit it, “Je t’adore, Internet!” But, Library, you will always be my first and truest love. It is to you that I turn for accuracy! (That sounded more romantic in my head.)

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