First, thank God everyone has weathered Irene okay. Most of my east coast pals are waterlogged, but everyone came out in one piece. I was so glad to get an email from Marni especially because North Carolina took the hit first and fiercest.
So, for years I've driven past this very curious building. It's obviously well-kept, has a sign on the front of the building and flags that flutter above the roofline. The flags are always new, never look tattered, but the building has no "open" sign, nor have I ever seen anyone enter or exit the building. I've never seen cars parked near it. I've looked in the phone book and never found a listing. It looks like maybe a bar or restaurant, but the lack of any advertising or phone listing had me guessing it was a private club. Or used to be open but is now vacant? I've never ever heard anyone speak of this place, either.
My curiosity has run deep for years, even to the point of writing the local business columnist to try to learn what this place might be. I have never tried to enter the building, it's not a welcoming facade--the picture really does it justice. There is nothing on the exterior to indicate if this place is even open for business.
Fast forward to this weekend: I'm a busy worker bee trying to bring my manuscript up to snuff. In addition to making characters send text messages instead of emails, I have to check the locations I reference--the bulk of the story takes place in Madison and I want everything up to the minute. The lesbian-owned club I mention in one chapter has gone out of business, so I Google "lesbian clubs madison" to find a new spot to mention. The first link listed is a directory of LGBT clubs in Wisconsin--and there--right there at the beginning of the list of Wisconsin cities in alphabetical order--I spy a listing for "Rascals." In fact, I could even link directly to a website to learn about their weekly specials and even see a picture from the inside of the bar. What a satisfying discovery!
Still ... with my 20/20 hindsight, you'd think the rainbow flags would've clued me in, right?