For Spring break fun this year, we headed to the heartland to visit our Aunt Karen and David’s hometown. Usually when we drove to Kansas through Indiana and Illinois, we would see corn fields along the whole way. This time instead of corn, we saw vast meadows covered with wild purple flowers. When we first set eyes on those purple masses, we thought we were looking at lavender fields. We realized then that springtime is a very pleasant time to go to Kansas and to travel westward. This impression continued when we arrived in Topeka and saw purple redbuds everywhere. It was definitely my first memory of noticing Topeka in springtime.
We left our home in Campbellsville at 5am and arrived at our Aunt’s house around 6pm. Memories of our younger lives came flooding back to me when we passed through St. Louis. We stopped and ate our picnic lunch at a neighborhood park in Illinois where the kids played for a while at the playground. Right before crossing over to Kansas, we stopped in downtown Kansas City at a Vietnamese restaurant for dinner.
Pictures of US troops during the Vietnam War lined the wall right next to us in the restaurant. We had a nice view of downtown Kansas City and the shuttling tram from where we sat. We tried to keep track of how many people we could see using the tram. We could also see the flower market and the shipwreck museum from our window. The food was not bad and inexpensive, but we found that the food in our familiar Vietnamese restaurant in Louisville is much better. While eating there, we learned a little bit about the real estate situation in Kansas City by eavesdropping on the owner and a customer sitting not far from us vocalizing their mutual dismay over the shortage of houses to buy. That sounds just like the real estate situation in Campbellsville right now.
We had a relaxing and interesting Spring break and family time in Topeka. We visited the zoo our first morning there when the weather was perfect for a day-out. On our second morning, it was cool, cloudy and prone to rain. However, we had our heart set on visiting Ward-Meade Park Botanical Gardens and were lucky to finish our visit before it finally rained. Ward-Meade presented us with such charming old prairie town buildings and a wide array of stunning early Spring blooms. We followed the meandering path to feast our eyes, and cameras, on the variety of daffodils and the spectacularly colorful tulips. Jacob and James hopped around quite a bit to interact with all the landscaping features in the gardens. I was pleasantly surprised to find a Japanese-style garden and fish pond there.
Hope everyone is enjoying the flowers and lengthening days before the summer humidity sets in. Peace to all.