The beautifully furnished public rooms included a bookstore, the shelves filled with books on every topic, and where glass-fronted cabinets displayed many rare editions available for sale.
If we weren't in the market for buying books (Please! Our house is already filled!), we could walk just across the street from the inn and consider the offerings at the Westport Library, a historic building set on a long green lawn.
Just next door to the inn is the Westport Visitors' Center, occupying a charming building that once housed a church.
And just across the street from the visitor's center is a currently active church, a handsome stone structure with a remarkable bell tower.
A strong rainstorm the first evening of our visit created dramatic sunset clouds and impressive masses of swirling mist rising from the mountain valleys.
We had come to Westport on Tuesday in order to shorten by a hundred miles the drive I was taking on Wednesday to meet fellow plant enthusiasts for an expedition to Valcour Island, which lies but a mile or so offshore from the village of Peru, N. Y. This island is famous among botanists for the many rare plants that thrive in its calcareous soils, and I was beyond excited by the prospect of seeing the tiny, beautiful, and exceedingly rare Ram's-head Lady Slipper.
Although our group wouldn't meet until 10 A.M., and the drive from Westport would take me only a little more than half an hour, I was up before 6, too eager for the day to begin to waste it sleeping in. This close to Solstice, the sun was already well up, although it was hidden by departing clouds against the eastern horizon. But I'm glad I was up and already walking along the shore when a break in those clouds let a golden light illumine the swirls of mist rising from the quiet waters of Lake Champlain. What a lovely way to start a day that proved to be nothing but amazing! I'm just going through my photos now and trying to find the words to express what a thrilling day it was for me. But I will be back soon to share with my readers our adventures on Valcour Island.