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THE GATEWAY TO THE WEST - MAR 18, 2006

 

I never really thought much of St. Louis until very recently. To me, that city was just a stopover on a very long road trip from the Atlantic to the Pacific. The last pit-stop before you hit the gas pedal real hard, and begin to tackle the very straight freeways (at way over 80 mph, I might add) through the very rectangular states in the never-ending American midwest. 

 

Earlier this year, I stopped by St. Louis and even stayed there for a couple of days! I was visiting one of the biggest fans of my website. It was during this trip that I realized that there was more to this Midwestern city that I had expected. 

 

I had always known of the arch, and had a certain fascination for it, but I was pleasantly surprised to learn of its significance in the history of this great country. I was in awe (and it wasn't all 'coz of the beer!) when I saw the splendid structure up close - very mathematical and very unlike anything else in the world!! I was even more surprised to learn that one could actually climb that thing!! This I did not see coming. The ride up the arch is an ingenious design combining the works of a cable-car and an elevator. The view itself is very mediocre.

 

The best part about the Arch is the history associated with it. The 630 ft high structure is officially know as the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial and was erected to commemorate the Lewis and Clark expedition to the Pacific. The visitor center shows two films, one on the construction of the arch and the other on the historic expedition. I went in for the latter and enjoyed it thoroughly.

 

Maybe I will return for some more. 

 

 

 

 

 

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