hot springs

I can’t believe it’s been a week since we head out for that famous town. And what’s funny is that I never really gave much thought to Hot Springs before my aunt set it as the town we should visit this year. But oh, how I am glad she did.

We ate much, talked more, laughed till we burst, and relaxed with a vengeance. It was wonderful, taking our part in the age-old ritual of bathing in healthy waters. Do I feel better? I did, certainly, but one week back to normal life and I think I need another massage… *wink

We stayed at the Arlington, right on the corner intersection in downtown Hot Springs.

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It used to be a bit of a gangsters retreat in that lawless era, and the hallway above definitely looks like a scene from an old film. Now, if only the lamps would flicker…

Bath-House row, aptly named, sports a number (I lost count) of large, ornate buildings all dedicated to the healing of its occupants. It was built over the natural river, so the waters flow underneath.

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Right next to the main downtown area is the national park. It’s really something, and after a rather hair-raising trip up the side of a small mountain, we reached the tower observatory.

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Also near the center of Hot Springs is the Mid-American Science Museum, an affiliate of the Smithsonian. Yeah, four adults spent two hours happily exploring…

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Tesla’s Coil. It was thunderous.

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And the Garvan Woodland Gardens. We opted for the golf-cart tour, and it was a wise choice. Absolutely magnificent.

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Inside the garden are two attractions you wouldn’t expect. The first is the carillon, or belltower, and it tolled its warning when we had to leave…

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And then, just for a moment, I believed we had stepped out of America and into Lothlorien of Middle Earth. It was that stunning. The pragmatically named Wedding Chapel.

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The soft music playing, the light spinning down in shafts through the lace woodwork, and the utter stillness of the woodlands around us; almost I could believe in magic.

But then the belltower rang, and we had to leave the spell.

Our trip, short as it was, was utterly satisfying. Had the journey been extended, we might have grown tired of the attractions. We had our baths, our massages, and the facial. Aside from that, there was little else.

If I had to name a favorite attraction, I think I would have to say the Museum. My nerd rules out in favor of it…although I still remember walking into the chapel…speechless with wonder…

ottermei

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