One of the first places I fell in love with in California is a town in Santa Ynez Valley called Solvang. A unique place founded by the Danes in 1910 and very much retaining its Danish identity.
Our friends used to own a small cabin on a huge piece of land there, and every year we drove up to Solvang for a week of relaxation. I have never been in a quieter place, a farm-like location that reminded me of my grandmother’s hundred-year old house, seven thousand miles away.
How This Pertains to the Story
It helps to have a physical place in mind when describing a house, doesn’t it? In Stranger or Friend, Zoe and her mother spend a lot of time in their old Wyoming house. And every time I described the fire crackling, or the family sitting around the dinner table, or the porch, or the chair near the window, I imagined this small house in Solvang.
While I’ve visited Wyoming and that helped envision the setting, no other small house spoke to me as much as this one. Serene, old, on a several-acre piece of land. It gets very dark at night — allowing for a gorgeous tableau of the stars. Dark and cold.
Is there one particular space, outside your home, that left a unique impression on you?