top of page
  • viarmelin

Day 20: is that... a building?

Saturday, June 24, 2023
Mt. Vernon, IL  St. Louis, MO
130.65 km && +287 m elevation [81.18 mi && +942 ft elevation]

🇧🇷 Song for today: Canto das Três Raças — Clara Nunes 🇧🇷

Biking today

Not trying to be a monotonous cornball here, but today's ride was, well, flat and corny (pun police will have a field day with this... fine, fine, I'll stop). Here's Duha with the corn fields.

We left pretty early to try and beat the heat (it got to about 35 °C/95 °F already at 1pm). Together with the general flatness of the route, we managed to get to our hosts' house quite early in the day and had a lot of time to chat and do other non-biking things now that we got back to a big city... keep reading!

First things first: food

Our first focus typically tends to be food. I wish I could say this is because we're biking a lot (and we are), but truth is, we're just always hungry regardless of what we've been up to.

While out on the town, some of us had some typical St. Louisan toasted ravioli. It's literally what it sounds like. And I thought clam chowder was a weird traditional dish... Not too shabby, though!

Meanwhile, Andrew was hard at work shopping at Costco – while facetiming his mom for tips – to cook us some traditional Vietnamese food. Well, except for the Costco ice cream and Mochi breaks... mostly hard at work.

St. Louis: Part I

After cooling off for a bit at our hosts' amazing house, we went out to start exploring St. Louis in the afternoon. Although we didn't have time to see everything we wanted today (more tomorrow!), we still got to see many cool places and check off some of our tourist checkboxes!

The Gateway Arch: the classic St. Louis landmark. It's definitely bigger than I thought it'd be – it's taller than the Washington monument in DC! The arch and the park around it make for a really nice skyline view from the margins of the Mississippi river. Here's hoping McDonald's buys the land next door and completes the M soon.

Union Station: once one of the largest and busiest railway passenger rail terminals in the world (at least according to their own website), the station now has event spaces and even a hotel. The interior is amazing, and we managed to crash a wedding to boot!

Busch Stadium: home of the St. Louis Cardinals, the city's professional baseball team. At least the stadium looks better than the team's play on the diamond this season.

Enterprise Center: home of the St. Louis Blues, the city's professional hockey team. Pretty cool stop for the most part, except for the bits celebrating their beating the Boston Bruins for the 2019 Stanley Cup 🫠. My quest of visiting all the NHL arenas continues (we've also visited the Predators' Bridgestone Arena while in Tennessee during this trip so far). As a cool random fact, our host Chris had a personally dedicated, autographed Gretzky jersey!

Aesop's Fables: we found the original! The red sculpture, Aesop's Fables, was created by Mark di Suvero in 1990 for the Citygarden park in St. Louis (the one on the left). Look familiar? That's because we have the Aesop's Fables, II sculpture right in our campus (second photo)! The MIT List Visual Arts Center had di Suvero install the new one in Hockfield court in 2005. *insert Spiderman pointing at Spiderman meme*

Assorted bits: some other cool sights from our little expedition. In order:

  • CityPark, the home of the St. Louis City, the city's professional soccer team. Though 2023 is their first season in MLS as a recent expansion team, they're leading the Western conference right now! Our hosts and I watched their game tonight together in the living room. Good win!

  • Some municipal buildings, like the civil courts and the city hall

  • Other entertainment spots, like the St. Louis Wheel and a view of the Citygarden park in the late afternoon

We'll also explore more of the city tomorrow, so be sure to look out for Audrey's blog post for more angles and sites!


Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page