Illinois 2017 – Day 4 – The Pain Of Growing Up

03 Jul 2017
Author: Joel The Great  |  Category: Story Time  |  Comments (0)  |  Add Comment

(The start of this series can be found here: DAY 1)

Day 4

Today was a day to be spent basically in Seattle St. Louis (The inside joke there is I kept calling it Seattle when planning the trip).

About 5 years ago we went up to visit family in Illinois, and stopped by St. Louis to go up into the Gateway Arch and have a look around.  Since we’ve done that before, and also because there is all kinds of odd construction making visiting the arch just a huge pain in the ass, this time we opted to check out a museum.

City Museum

Now, due to me wanting to enjoy our time, I didn’t get a lot of pictures that really capture how awesome this place is.

It’s in an old factory that has been completely redone. There are sculptures and mosaics and art everywhere.  The rails on the banisters to the stair cases are wildly painted conveyor belt rollers. There are a FIVE and TEN story slide (YES, STORY, LIKE LEVELS OF A BUILDING).  There are no less than a dozen other slides.  There are countless caves, trees, sculptures, places to climb, crawl, slither, slide, walk, wriggle, squeeze, and jam yourself through.  And these go multiple stories as well.  There is an entire area outside with airplanes, cargo nets, and other metal climbing tubes/structures multiple stories in the air. The main bathroom has the outside of it covered with BREAD PANS:

City Museum Bread Pans


Ferris Wheel on Top of City Museum

And yes we rode that.  A Ferris Wheel on top of a huge building near downtown St. Louis.

They also do have museum things, like pieces of old St. Louis Architecture, an entire entomology section and more.  They have a circus area where we saw a tumble/juggling/hulahoop/clown put on a one woman show that had us all laughing, especially our kids.  I could go on and on and on this place was amazing.  One huge art installation and playground in one.

I honestly can’t do the place as much justice in words.  Check out there site yourself.

The thing it made the wife and I realize: We aren’t kids anymore.  We’re not as small. We’re not as in shape.  Crawling on our hands and knees causes pains we didn’t know we could have.  I mean we’re not like completely out of shape needing rascal scooters to get around, but this was designed specifically for kids, so there were lots of area’s we could not squeeze through/under/on.  There was one area that they even put a warning sign saying that to get out you’d need to be able to fit through an 18″ wide gap.  That isn’t very big.

Amusing to me in the dirty sort of way, is we had lunch there (We spent the whole day there).  They had a special for a jumbo dog with chips for like $7.50.  When I was ordering the various foods and getting hot dogs for me and my son the lady taking our order informed me “These are footlong dogs, is that okay?”  And I was like “Yeah, sure, whatevs.” Picturing something like a foot long dog from Sonic (thin but long).

Boy was I wrong:

Hot Dog Envy?

This thing is thicker than my thumb and an actual foot long (small bag of chips for scale).   The good news is it was on a real bun that was super delicious.  But yes snickering and whispered jokes to my wife about it were had.  Naughty jokes.

On the way out of the museum we got to meet a sculptor.  He was working on a huge piece of marble(?) to be a part of the museum.

Sculpture – Phoenix head

Sculpture – Turtle Head

Sculpture – City logo

We talked to him a bit, he has been working on it for 3 years, and he had chunks of the leftover bits in neat shapes with the City Museum logo on them that we got to buy.  It’s neat to talk to someone who actually makes things.

After all day at the place with the crawling and climbing and what not, we returned back to the area our hotel was in (in Illinois)(This means so far we’ve crossed the Mississippi River 5 times. 1x on Day 2, 2x on Day 3, 2x on day 4).

We hit up a local Chinese buffet place because kids are so easy to feed when they can get little bits of this that and the other, and then we hit the pool in our Hotel because it’d feel good on our old achy joints after the day we had.

This is where something annoyed us.

I understand traveling is no fun.  I understand the kids need to unwind.  BUT, when you have 10+ year old kids cannon balling/diving into a 4.5 foot end of a hotel pool where there were no less than 5 signs/tiles that state “NO DIVING,” you’re just being a dick.  This would be more understandable if it weren’t for the parents of these kids sitting by just letting them do it.  Our youngest (5 and a have years old) isn’t a great swimmer, and they were splashing everyone and making quite a ruckus of waves by constantly ignoring the rules.

I know, I’m just an old dude who doesn’t understand being young and having fun.  But you possibly endanger my child then I have a desire to punch you in the face. Also, being married to someone who used to be a volunteer firefighter, and my other adventures in life, I didn’t want to have to explain to the police how a kid got his skull busted open or whatever could have happened.

I also drive within a 2-3 MPH of the speed limit too. Sorry if safety is boring to you.

Anyways, Day 4 is done.  Onto day 5!

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