25 September 2014

Having a Nice Staycation

After working last Friday and Saturday morning, I've been off on vacation this week. It's my first paid vacation with the firm and the first in quite a few years, going back to my last full time work.It's a "staycation" for me, not going anywhere. If I had more money in the bank, I'd go out of town. Maybe next time.

It's mostly been at home, taking care of some personal business. Last Sunday (21 Sept.), I was at St. Raymond's Maronite Cathedral in downtown St. Louis for their annual Lebanese Festival. It was my first time at this event and I thought it was nice. Lebanese good, music, crafts and dance. I just had a bit of cake with coffee, but I liked it. A rather nice time.

The next day, I put the finishing touches on a story on a preserved aircraft at Jefferson Barracks in south St. Louis County. I am hoping to submit this story with photographs to the Missouri Aviation Historical Society's member newsletter. I got a tentative yes from the newsletter's editor, and hope to hear a final answer soon. I actually had more material than I need for the story, so I proposed putting the extra items on our website. We'll see.

Tuesday night (23 Sept.), I hosted the monthly IPMS/Gateway business meeting. We planned our next month's meetings and discussed other club business. As secretary, I took down notes to be submitted to the board and to the club newsletter in the coming days.

Late Wednesday afternoon, I was at HandleBar, in the Grove neighborhood in St. Louis, for a happy hour. It was put on by the Friends from Around the World Meetup, and included several interns from other countries working with organizations in Metro St. Louis. I met a young man, a native of Rwanda now living in the St. Louis area. It was nice spending some time there with some people I know and others I just met there.

Today, I made a trip, starting late in the morning with a brief stop at the Anheuser-Busch Gift Shop to browse, then went to Crown Candy Kitchen just north of downtown St. Louis for lunch. It's a soda fountain in business since 1913, but I have never been there before. After waiting a few minutes for a table, I sat down and ordered a Reuben sandwich with potato chips, a soda, and a Swiss Chocolate Sundae for dessert. The whole lunch was so good and I loved the ambiance of the place. I will definitely recommend Crown Candy Kitchen to anyone in town (resident or visitor). Their website is http://crowncandykitchen.net/

Then, I drove to the Kirkwood-Des Peres area to visit the Museum of Transportation, which I have not visited in quite a few years. There's been quite a bit of changes to the place since that last visit. For one, the automotive display was very nicely spiffed up. Also, they did some nice work on the railroad artifacts (locomotives and rolling stock). Don, a museum volunteer, showed me through some railroad passenger cars on display and talked about some work he and his fellow volunteers have been doing lately. It was nice to get this perspective from someone like him, something I would not have received on my own. Here's the museum's website: http://transportmuseumassociation.org/

I'll do a bit more sightseeing this weekend before returning to work on Monday.