Since it’s finally Spring and nice weather has made the outside world tolerable again, my mother and I decided to take advantage of the beautiful day and spend an entire Saturday doing the things we both love to do.
Up first on our itinerary, was the Missouri Botanical Gardens in St. Louis. Because of the nice weather the place was crowded, so after finding a place to park and waiting in line for tickets we finally made our way inside. Now if you’ve never been to the Botanical Gardens, or even to St. Louis for that matter and love flowers, I highly recommend going. Right now there are many varieties of tulips, daffodils, azaleas, tree peony’s and dogwoods in bloom, and the place looks beautiful.
Mixed among the planters full of beautiful flowers are various statues, blown glass sculptures, fountains, and box hedge mazes which help add to the beauty surrounding you. There are also quite a few buildings to keep your interest, like a small lighthouse, the climatron with a tropical rain forest inside, and my mother’s favorite, the Tower Grove house which was built in 1849.
Another interesting section of the Botanical Gardens is the Japanese Garden. It has perfectly raked rock gardens, lotus flowers (which sadly aren’t in bloom until Summer), pagodas, a large pond full of koi fish who seem to be well fed, and not one but two iconic bridges. A lot of its flowering bushes and trees didn’t seem to be in bloom right now, but regardless the winding walkways and fresh smells of Spring were plenty of reason to enjoy this section of the gardens.
Since we were in a hurry to get to our next destination, the Japanese garden would be our last stop at the Botanical Gardens, but not before a few more flowers and sculptures along the path and a pass by the children’s area where there seems to be no lack of activity to keep little ones entertained.
Next we made our way to the St. Louis Art Museum, which proved harder to get to than usual thanks to a combination of nice weather and a large event taking place in Forest Park. Nevertheless, we made it with plenty of time to spare and purchased our tickets to the current exhibition of Impressionist France. Because of the great masters featured inside that are on loan to the museum, photography wasn’t allowed, so instead I will tell you wholeheartedly that if you love the work of masters such as Claude Monet, Edouard Manet, Edgar Degas, and Camille Pissarro then you’ll enjoy this exhibit.
There is also a lot of interesting and beautiful photography from 19th century France by the likes of individuals such as Gustave Le Gray who focused on seascapes and nautical scenes, and Charles Marville who captured the narrow streets and alleyways of a modern and industrialized Paris. The exhibit will be running until July 6, and is worth checking out if you’re in the area.
Straight out of the exhibit, I practically dragged my mother to another beautiful piece of Impressionism which is always on display at the art museum, and is a personal favorite of mine. It really needs no introduction, but to be thorough I’ll introduce it anyway. The above is one of three panels of Monet’s Water Lilies, and is much more beautiful in person than it appears to be in the photo I took above with my phone (my camera’s batteries had sadly died by this point in the day).
After a respectful, yet not creepy amount of time feeling lost inside the beauty both created and captured by Monet, we made our way through a few sections of the museum including the decorative arts and design, arms and armor, European art, and American art collections before leaving just before the museum closed. We concluded our outing with dinner at Blueberry Hill in the Loop before heading home and finishing our evening off with some wine.