Monday, March 17, 2008

Meet Me In St. Louis

I'd survived the storm but was starting to get a bit tired. All the same, I wanted to have some fun, and a nice place to have some fun is in St. Louis. There are a few places yet in the general area I'd like to explore some day, but weather was still a concern at the moment, so I wasn't sure where to go in regards to being interesting while not bound to cake my shoes with mud...I wanted to get a few shots of the arch with my digital camera, but I wasn't in the right lane and it wasn't such a big deal that I wanted to turn around. So I went into Missouri, over the Mississippi River early in the morning, passing the arch and heading towards Forest Park. Usually I go to the zoo and the science museum and the day is over, so I was debating about doing something different. I considered going to the Missouri Botanical Gardens, but I wasn't sure it was open at the time. So I went to the park and drove around to a different area. There was a sort of welcome center and café in one area, so I parked and walked to that. Many joggers and runners were about; apparently there was even some organized event going on, judging from tables of food and signs and joggers milling around. Anyway I went into the center and looked around, used the facilities and collected an assortment of brochures and maps and sat down to look them over. There were some cool science things, but also some immediately useful info. Turned out the Botanical Gardens were free or cheap at a certain time, if I wanted to go then; but also there were several museums in the park I'd never been to, that were free as well. Since it kept threatening rain, that was an appealing option. I decided I'd do whatever was open, wherever I was closest to at any given time.

So I wandered back out and started walking to see what was in the vicinity. That seemed to be a pond with a gazebo. The weather was spitty so I wasn't sure how far to go--at first I just kept near the little lake and tested taking pictures in the grey light.

Here's a weeping willow and clusters of other flora.

The park gazebo...well, bandstand actually, I guess. Nice echoing reflection.
Flowers were planted all about...
On the other side of a large patch of rose bushes was the Municipal Theatre. At the time I didn't know that...all I could see were a lot of colorful flags and banners. But later I walked around and discovered it was a fancy place for actors to do some board stomping. Or trodding.
Facial farding. Other emotive operations...
Then I walked back by the bandstand and around the pond, and decided to see if the Science Museum was open yet. Or anything else. Unfortunately it was still too early for most things, I walked behind the Science Museum to greet my old pals, the dinosaurs. I don't know how long they've been at it there, but I think they must have gotten some fresh paint at some point. They looked a little different. Of course, I don't think the tree had fallen on them before. And I tried to get different angles of them, so they'd look slightly more realistic. Eek, what you find while walking in a Missouri forest!! Tyrannosaurs and triceratopseseses!

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