Trains In The Green- Photos From Eureka Springs, Arkansas

The brick and the green, Arkansas
Lovely Green, Eureka Springs

Trains here, Eureka Springs
SleepyfablesAndCoffee in Eureka Springs

Eureka Springs, trains and summer

The Brownstone Inn, Eureka Springs,AR

Eureka Springs….what a place.

I got the idea to take a roadtrip out there like I usually do, by messing around on google maps and clicking around. I’d like to think this is somewhat akin to unfolding a large map on a car hood to pick your next destination, but with the technological advantage of getting to see photos of where you’re going. Photos will only ever tell you so much, but I liked what I saw and so I roped the boyfriend into coming with on what turned out to be the rainiest weekends of May. We drove up through the quiet nothingness that is Northern Texas after a certain point, across the muted landscape of Oklahoma that only lights up with casino lights and billboards for said casinos, into the stomach churning green hill-roads of Arkansas.

We arrived near midnight in Eureka Springs, the muggy air beating down our lungs and the pattering of gentle rain falling on our heads. Well shit, I remember thinking, I hope it doesn’t rain too hard tomorrow. Sometimes i’m lucky and sometimes luck just slaps me in the face with a wet fish, but waking up that next morning was like waking up to a pot of gold. Sun shining down blazing hot, birds singing like no one’s business and everything looking pretty as a picture.

We’d already made plans to go check out the massive Jesus Christ of the Ozark’s statue (oh yes, it was exactly as fascinating as you’d think),finding the Thorn Crown Chapel (which turned out to be literally the most beautiful church i’ve ever been in, perhaps even counting St. Patricks Cathedral) and taking another mini road trip up through Missouri, so we didn’t plan to spend much time in the city center that day. But as we were leaving town, I caught a glimpse of a beautiful train behind green trees and just had to stop to explore more.

I don’t know what it is about me and old trains, not to mention my apparently depthless obsession with abandoned buildings covered in greenery, but I got a good fill of both that morning. It did end up raining like a bowl of water upended over the earth, but at least I got a sunny morning and afternoon that day.

~m

 

 

 

In The Wonderland of Arkansas

There was something unexpected about Arkansas, maybe because, to put it rather horribly bluntly, I wasn’t expecting much. No one I knew had ever been anywhere near the state, or wanted to, but I was determined to find something to light up my eyes. So on the mini-last-minute-no-seriously-i-booked-everything-in-the-car-on-my-way-there-last minute roadtrip I took back at the end of September I decided to stay the first night in Little Rock, giving myself the day to explore the surrounding area.

I found peace and calmness by the edge of a lake, just off the main road, my first immersion into the stillness and beauty of nature in years.20140117-124219.jpg20140117-124329.jpg20140117-124300.jpg20140117-124315.jpg

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From there I headed in the general direction of paved streets and ended up in Hot Springs, a town that I could have easily spent the day in. Pockets of urban decay right up against shining beautiful buildings, sunlit paved streets and gravel busted dirt trails, trying to find a parking spot near a coffee shop and getting to sit in the quiet park above it all, swinging my legs like a tired child.

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After that excursion, the sun was getting ready to set and running on 4 hours of sleep like I was, I headed towards my rest stop for the night in Little Rock, but Arkansas wasn’t done surprising me and jolting me into awareness with its special brand of expresso exploration. Idley staring out my window while driving down a slightly narrow and out of the way road, I spotted this beautiful gem and had my heart well and truly captured.

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Arkansas is for explorers and anyone willing to well and truly put all expectations aside and just go where the road takes you.