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Midday Muse: Where Art Thou, Conservatory?

Growing up, my parents built themselves a big, white Colonial that to this day is one of my favorite structures, despite however modern my tastes are becoming. On one wing of the house, next to the living room, was a small, marble-floored conservatory that we called "the Sunroom." Unlike the traditional use for conservatories, it was not a greenhouse, although it may have held a ficus or two. It was really just a recreational room, where we might read on a warm day, and where my mother set my dollhouse (that she'd découpaged), so I'd be out of her hair when I played. Although this sunroom wasn't the most high-traffic room in the house, it was the most beautiful, inside and out. Today, and even then, these small glass enclosures are few and far between, and that saddens me. I understand that it's silly, and not so eco-friendly, to build a room you never use. But, to see this prepossessing architectural element fall by the wayside in favor of at-home movie theaters and arcade rooms is a stab in the heart. I suppose it's just a sign that we live in a society that prefers blockbusters and X-boxes over gardening and books.

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