St. Louis and Beyond! (personal update, 11.10.2011.)

by Trista DiGiuseppi

Hello.

I’m glad to see the blog is taking off. We have 16 subscribers via email and other wordpress sites. Which, by the way, make sure to take a look at our blogroll. We have many other blogs linked there for your reading pleasure. Also, I’m happy to say that I sat down and read over my book (NJ) for the last time. The final copy. It was splendid. It read exactly the way I wanted it to sound. Happiness. Fulfillment. And now, a much needed break.

I plan to take a vacation to Cleveland in the next two weeks. I will be happy to leave the beautiful city of St. Louis for a time being. My husband and I are driving up rather than flying. It seems that you can’t reserve a flight straight to Cleveland from St. Louis anymore. They all make you stop over in another city (typically Chi-town) and they charge you extra for it. I’d rather relax in the car with my best friend and listen to Imogen Heap and Smashing Pumpkins. It’s cheaper. It’s therapeutic. I think it will work out much nicer.

What is it like to live in the Lou? St. Louis that is. Yes, we call it The Lou – as if it’s the toilet. Nothing could be farther from the truth. It’s a wonderful city, filled with art, museums, and a beautiful zoo. What is amazing is the fact that the Art Museum and the Zoo are both free admission. And they are high-end; top-ranking, if you will. The tax payers of St. Louis city pick up the tab to keep the museums and the zoo “free for all.” There was an option to drop the city tax and start charging admission, the residents of St. Louis voted it down. Keeping the admission free keeps our tourism coming in, and in these economic times – it helps. I am grateful that everyone gives a little so that we can all share in something wonderful.

Another great attraction is the “City Museum.” It’s not exactly a museum, however. It’s more like a playground for adults.

According to the City Museum’s website, they describe their facility as such:

Housed in the 600,000 square-foot former International Shoe Company, the museum is an eclectic mixture of children’s playground, funhouse, surrealistic pavilion, and architectural marvel made out of unique, found objects. The brainchild of internationally acclaimed artist Bob Cassilly, a classically trained sculptor and serial entrepreneur, the museum opened for visitors in 1997 to the riotous approval of young and old alike.

Cassilly and his longtime crew of 20 artisans have constructed the museum from the very stuff of the city; and, as a result, it has urban roots deeper than any other institutions’. Reaching no farther than municipal borders for its reclaimed building materials, City Museum boasts features such as old chimneys, salvaged bridges, construction cranes, miles of tile, and even two abandoned planes!

“City Museum makes you want to know,” says Cassilly. “The point is not to learn every fact, but to say, ‘Wow, that’s wonderful.’ And if it’s wonderful, it’s worth preserving.”

It was where I had my engagement photos taken, which turned out beautifully.

As for dining, well, I’m half Sicilian. Ergo, I love pizza. And while I will always love the pizza I can get in the wonderful city of Chicago (St. Louis’s sister), I still believe the best pizza place remains Pi Pizzeria. If you’re ever in St. Louis and you want pizza, make sure to stop there. It’s delicious.

So that’s a little bit about where I live.

What else…

Well, Skyrim comes out tomorrow. In case you haven’t been following my Facebook, you may not have been aware that I’m big into video games – open world RPG’s in particular. (My books almost play out like some kind of open world RPG. Thus they are right up my alley…) I love what Bethesda has done, I really do. I remember – about ten years ago – walking into a Babbages (they don’t even exist anymore) and I bought Morrowind, Elder Scrolls 3. What a game. It was so open-ended. The offline, online experience. Then Oblivion came out, but I had a tough time with it on the PC. Once I shifted over to Xbox360, I realized it was much better to play. I wasn’t so crazy about the Oblivion gates, but I loved how they stepped up the graphics and the quests. And after seeing the trailers and production work for Skyrim, I can tell they did not hold back in the improvement of the Elder Scrolls series. You have yet to disappoint me, Bethesda.

Well, on that note. I am going to sign off. My laptop battery is at the end of its life and my cell phone is ringing nonstop.

-Trista

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