I used to have this theory that if I called a Travelog something innocuous and comforting like apple pie, I would have a harmless and gustatory sort of motivation to write it. This is obviously false since the last one was about Chennai, 3 years ago. Not only am I aging, but I'm also great at self delusion.
Any excuse to get out of Gainesville is a worthy cause. Throw a giant arch, a mad family, a ho-down, frozen custard, anteaters, museums and cats into the picture, and by God, there will be an Aggie there.
St Louis is the kind of place that I like by default. It's a big city with enough buildings that I had to crane my neck to look up to, bad traffic and good food in the middle of a tearing downpour of rain. What makes St Louis such a great place, personally, is the arch, which almost makes me miss skulking around Bombay. Picture a rainy day in Colaba, looking around and grounding yourself with the Gateway somewhere in your peripheral vision. The Arch is somewhat like that, a structure that let's you orient yourself in the middle of a big city.
Over the last four days, I've absorbed a whole new place. With Thai food, Ted Drewes, the St Louis Zoo, Body Worlds, Waterloo, and a gazillion other things :)
They do fireworks on a whole other dimension here. With barges shooting off lights in the sky framed by the arch, as thousands of people watched on. I think it's a hell of a way to celebrate freedom. Imagine having Jana Gana Mana and peda's on steroids.
Other bit's of this trip included the best party I've ever been to, with the formidable party planning skills behind it. Never has a ho down been this awesome, stray fireworks and the heat notwithstanding :) What struck me about Waterloo and the little towns around it was it's quaintness and scattered bits of history around churches, houses and tiny coffee shops. Any Starkey's reading this, I love you :)
There wasn't a free second to whip out a camera so no pictorial evidence exists. Another reason to go back, eh?