Have you ever wanted to sell everything you own and just "take off?" Travel the country's back roads, paddle down a meandering stream, experience breath-taking mountain views, walk among 100-year old trees, and just marvel at America's beauty? That is the dream that my partner, Betsy, and I decided to make a reality. This blog describes our adventure. The food we eat, people we meet, sights we see, and the enjoyment we find in traveling.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

A Little Taste of Home

It’s always good to “go home” and spend time with family.  For Betsy and me, “home” is wherever the motorhome is parked but I still have plenty of family in my home town of St. Louis and I was long overdue for a visit.

Our winter destination is the panhandle of Florida so as we vacated the west coast we decided to cut across country to see family in Kansas City and St. Louis.  (Sorry we didn’t have more time to swing by south Missouri and Arkansas to visit with more family.)  It took us through some parts of the country we had never seen and brought a new perspective to what lies in the lesser traveled parts of Nevada, Utah, and Kansas.

Maybe I should have rubbed him for good luck.
The city of St. Louis is electrified when their beloved Cardinals are heading to the World Series.  To say that St. Louisian’s are just excited is strikingly inappropriate.  You’d better have at least one Cardinals jersey sporting the name of your favorite player and a full six days worth of red clothes to wear in case the whole series plays out.  Dad insisted that I play tourist and have my picture taken with Stan "The Man" Musial outside the Cardinal's baseball stadium.  Of course, I was game.  And, who knows, maybe it would bring the good luck the Cardinals needed.

While we rooted from the armchairs and did our best to encourage the boys of summer, they fell short to the Red Sox’s.  Good job Boston, you deserved it.

We were camped at a great state park (Dr. Edmund A. Babler Memorial State Park) that was conveniently located near my parents house.  The park was alive with vibrant fall colors. Once the weekend was over, the campground cleared out and it was like we had a private campground.  Hiking and biking trails were scattered throughout the 868-acres urban park which offered great opportunities to stretch our legs in the cool mornings and afternoons.  Spirit came alive chasing squirrels and deer over the crunching leaves.  We absolutely love finding parks like this that offer such peace and quiet - especially in a major metropolitan area.  


One afternoon, we ventured downtown to the City Museum.  This is a funky, eclectic, creative arrangement of junk and stuff that acts as a playground and funhouse for young and old visitors.  Junk and donated items are turned into fun activities and interesting exhibits.  There is a school bus cantilevered off a building, open wire mesh that doubles as a crawl space, mazes, the world’s largest pencil and underwear, a ten-story slide, a shoelace factory (with 120-year old machines still making laces), and architectural pieces from buildings of Louis Sullivan and George Grant Elmslie.  It’s just crazy and super good fun.  

Note the bus on the top of the building.  You can walk to the front of the bus and look out the front door.  Kind of scary.
World's largest pencil
As I was gingerly walking through this wire cage
some kid crawled below me in a hurry to his
next daredevil act.

Mom told me these underwear were actually stolen as a prank.  Yuck!


This little girl told me climbing through that suspended wire tube was the scariest thing she had ever done in her life.

My dad doesn't seem to have the fear of heights that I do.  He was excited to jump into the shell of a plane precariously suspended four stories over the street. 
If there is one thing we HAVE to do in St. Louis, it is go to White Castle for some sliders (which are also known as "belly bombers" and I don't want to speculate as to why they are called that).  This is one of the first things on Betsy's list and my mom is always gracious enough to go with us.  They may not look like much (and some even say they taste like the cardboard box) but we like them and always make a stop.










The week in St. Louis was over before we knew it, we said our goodbyes, and set a course for Florida. Hopefully, we will be back in town before too long or my family will come find us down south.

A little sad after the Cardinals loss but my parents, brother and his family managed to smile for a picture.
For almost 91, my grandma still has spunk.



5 comments:

  1. Such great pictures of your family - your grandmother looks amazing! We were stationed at Scott AFB in the early 80s and visited St Louis often. Many trips to the Soulard Market, nights at Laclede's Landing, and shopping at Union Station. A great place to visit, but those hot summers and cold winters - glad our home has wheels now!

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    1. Note, we did not schedule a visit in August. Totally agree with you about those hot and humid summer days but do enjoy our visits home.

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  2. Hope you had room for some Ted Drewes ice cream to top off those "belly bombers".

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    1. Ooooh, Ted Drewes definitely makes the list. So does the Village Bar for their "Better Burger"

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  3. I'm thinking a visit to Arkansas is in my near future too--time to go see the family.

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