When our car passed into Vermont, my dad said something to the effect of, "Check another state off your never-been-to list." It was a bit more eloquent than that, but I can't remember.
It's true. I'd never been to Vermont, and half the reason my family was driving eight hours to get here was so I could tour a college or two. The other half was so my dad and sister could go skiing. (A lot of people ask why I don't ski. I wish I did, but I just haven't, and I never feel inclined to go teach myself. Usually I have something I want to write on cold winter nights. My dad and sister go every winter, though, and they love it.) Anyway, Vermont turned out to be really neat. I wouldn't mind going to college here--even with the weather we got, which ranged from pouring rain to gusting winds to ice to a large snowstorm.
The coolest thing, though?
We're staying in a little motel, surrounded by mountains and little towns milling with spring-break skiers. I've talked to the owners of the motel, a really nice couple, every day (the husband makes great pancakes for the motel breakfast!). Also, down the road is a neat little Irish pub/restaurant. My first thought, of both the motel and the pub, as well as the other locally owned gift stores and restaurants, was that they all seemed like perfect settings for books/movies. Even my mom, looking around the pub, said, "This is straight out of a Nora Roberts novel."
So, of course, I got back to the motel, opened my notebook, and jotted down key details. For a later novel. When you see an Irish pub that draws shamrocks in the foam of (my dad's) drink, you'll know where I got the inspiration.
Have you been to any places that you tucked away for future story use?