I remarked during my trip, to an extremely helpful bus driver, how gracious and friendly people had been to me in St. Louis. I enjoyed my visits to the two museums, particularly enthusiastic about their excellent art museum. I was quite taken by the park in which the museums were housed and wish I had had better weather and more time to explore it. From the brief glimpse I received, it appears the neighborhood around the park is also deserving of more exploration. I was underwhelmed by the segment of gay life I witnessed, but nowhere, even in my beloved hometown of Chicago, is that what it once was.
Early Monday morning arrived and I boarded the Amtrak train for my return trip. Having ridden on the left hand side of the train going south I realized I would also have to sit on the left hand side of the train going north to see the sights I had not seen as opposed to seeing what I had seen only backwards! I was allowed a better view of the Capitol building and the well preserved historic center of Joliet, including the beautifully renovated train station. Having to pull off to a siding to allow another train to pass we were treated to a bucolic vista of late summer wildflowers and due to the recent rains, somewhat replenished wetlands. A friend of mine, when I returned, mentioned how boring the drive is from Chicago to St. Louis. Upon learning that I had traveled by train he agreed that it would be a much more enjoyable and interesting trip. It is a mode of travel I highly recommend Perhaps, choosing to ride the train, if parents are lucky, "are we there yet" would turn into "are we there already".