Your big dome is always the first thing I catch a glimpse of as I make my way along Eutaw Place from State Center. The texture created by the clay tiles, the slight flare at the eave, and the rich patina of the surrounding metal intrigued me. I’ve driven by you for years not knowing your history. A synagogue for sure, but was that still your purpose?
Every time I pass you by (which is every day on the way to work), I can’t help but sigh as I think about a delicious mint chip filled-waffle cone, and imagine you all decked out and celebrating Baltimore’s role in the grand history of American ice cream.
Yes, most people know you simply as “The Roundhouse,” but I know you better than that. You aren’t round, you are an icosikaidigon, or twenty two sided polygon.
Unremarkable rowhouses now line the rolling hills where the conifers of your grand estate stood. The weeping willow, that persistent antebellum symbol, is long gone too, and your winding carriage path is now a straight road lined with too many cars. I should admit (embarrassed as I am to tell you) that I live in one of these unremarkable rowhouses.
I didn’t notice you at first. I don’t think most people did, which is strange because you are the most striking building on the block.
The first time I saw you, I was driving down South Street. I felt that I had known you forever. You were in my dreams for ages.