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Why so ordinary?

So, what, you ask, is all this “ordinary” business?  Well, if you open your Oxford English dictionary and go deep into the entry for the word “ordinary”, you’ll find the following “archaic British” definition of the word: “a meal provided at a fixed time and price at an inn, an inn providing this”.

The road-weary eighteenth-century colonist didn’t have the option of checking into the nearest Hilton Garden Inn with his Delta Skymiles.  Instead, he stayed in an ordinary, where he could park his horses, get a hot meal and a tall glass of grog and a room for the night.  William Reed’s (our) ordinary  was perfectly situated to welcome out-of-town travelers, located a stone’s throw from the courthouse.  It’s at the intersection of several important roads from that era: King Street, the Great Halifax Road and the Old Indian Trading Path.  It’s where the action was, and continues to be.

It doesn’t take much to imagine our basement, as it looks now:

as an ordinary, how it might have looked then:

I suppose I’ll have to start scouring Ebay for scabbards and muskets to hang over the mantel because it’s clear to me that this room must be restored to its “ordinary” state (yes, I’m going to continue to work this pun for all it’s worth).  I’m fairly certain that this project is low on the list of priorities, though some have suggested moving it straight to the top, assuring myself of a nice place to drink and sob when the inevitable sorrows of a lifelong renovation project take hold.

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