Sunday 1 May 2011


The third round at the Plumb Bob Keep inn-​building contest consisted of decorating the “presidential suite”—that is, a bedroom for wealthy travelers.

I called my room the “King of Strathclyde Chamber” with the idea that Old Aed’s father or grandfather must have stayed here before. (Or maybe Old Aed himself… if the locals consider him the rightful king.)

But you’ll see… in spite of the religious icons attempting to make the place look holy, this is a room that is crying out to be called the “Honeymoon Suite.” It gives me story ideas just looking at it. >8) 

Following is my contest entry. You can click any picture for a larger view.

Bird’s eye view:


The best room in the inn is the “King of Strathclyde Chamber,” named for royal pilgrims who have stayed here in times gone by. In fact, it consists of two rooms separated by a curtain, with a bed for a companion or a maid in the smaller room, and an optional extra room (which is not part of my entry) just outside the door for other servants.

Here is a view from a corner of the smaller room, with the door visible:


Near the door is a tall chest in which fine garments may be hung to help them remain sweet-​smelling and unwrinkled.

A complimentary light meal is provided to distinguished guests, including fruit, cheeses, pastries, and fresh light bread from the bakery in town. Meals may be served in the room if m’lord does not condescend to dine with common folk.

Here is another view of the table from the opposite direction:


The extra bed is in the corner.

Turning back towards the lord’s sleeping chamber:


We can see the bed as well as a toasty brazier in the corner.

The bed is on a raised platform, accessible by a padded stepping stool:


Curtains allow the bed to be shut off from drafts.

This being a site of pilgrimage, a private shrine holds an important place at the bedside, allowing a noble guest to perform his devotions in private.

After a hearty meal in his room and a half hour spent kneeling in prayer, he might later relax on the cushioned seat at the foot of the bed. Here he can have a warm dessert and a cup of hot spiced wine, and toast his feet beside the brazier full of hot coals that has been provided for him.


The handsome woodwork in this corner was built by the same craftsmen who decorated the interior of the little church. The monks are worldly enough to know that a luxurious inn is a necessary vanity if they want to attract pilgrims capable of dedicating generous sums of silver to their little shrine.

Here is a view of the far end of the room, with the brazier in the corner, the open window, and the bath tub and wash stand:


And here is a close-​up of the bathing area:


There is a basin and pitcher for rinsing hands and faces, or for the gentleman who would like a shave. There is also a fine mirror of polished tin.

On the floor beside it is a sturdy wooden tub that can be dragged out and filled by the inn’s servants, if an honored guest wishes to bathe more fully. When not in use, the tub is used to store extra towels and linens.

Beside the tub is a chamber pot hidden in a wooden seat. The seat is equipped with a lid to shut in unpleasant odors. Beside the chamber pot are a couple of potted plants whose leaves may be used for hygienic purposes.

And at last, after an exhausting day of travel, worship, feasting, bathing, and lounging beside a warm brazier, goblet of spiced wine in hand… the bed is beckoning.


P.S. That bed is awfully high. One might almost say a cliff… O8)