Suddenly, I have an even better idea about what to do with the surprise space I found in the upstairs living room. My house has slyly requested a curve-top nook.
(The original plan was to create a built-in, keeping the floor visible so it was clear that the original floor is part of this area. We were going to trim the sides with pine woodwork that matches what’s in the rest of the room. But there are four doorways in this room now—and double windows. And we’re going to install a short nook to take advantage of the other mystery space we found. So the original plan would have us installing shellacked casings around two more areas, leaving us with a grand total of seven openings with the same trim around them. Despite my appreciation for old-house woodwork, this might start to look crowded, making the 12 x 13 room seem smaller [I know this from the six doorways and two windows in the similar-size downstairs kitchen, though one of those windows isn’t trimmed out].
But tonight the house talked to me, buoying my spirits about a notion that occurred the other day. We had gone to the corner diner for brunch and on the way home hit a tiny resale shop around the corner. We’d been in before without finding anything great, but this time the proprietor was so happy to see us (we were her first customers of the day, at nearly noon) that she was actually giving things away. When we showed interest in a lamp shade, she said it was free; we gave her a buck for it anyway. And then we got talking about how the city had suddenly changed the classification of her permit and what she was allowed to sell. She ended up showing us some furniture on the second floor, and while I was checking that out I noticed a curve-top nook in one wall that had clearly lost a piece of furniture recently. She said there had been a cabinet there, but she had taken it. And so I filed away the yearning to see what had been in there; there was an outlet on one side wall. Apparently I also filed away the curved nook itself. Because that is what my house wants now.