Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: WEEKEND AWAY (short vacation) (07/23/15)
TITLE: Mystery Date
By Judy Sauer
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Laurie asks, “Describe what makes a great date night.”
“Mystery dates are the best,” I respond as memories flood my mind of past dates while a mischievous grin covers my face.
“What are those?” she inquires with eyes widening brightly.
“It’s when one of us plans a special night or weekend and the other one doesn't know what to expect. All we know is to keep the calendar open and wait.”
“Tell me more. Like, give me some examples so I know how I might surprise Kurt,” she eagerly wishes to know.
“I remember one trip, quite a few years ago where I told Dave to keep open a weekend. When the time came, I explained he needed to pack for a two night stay, nothing fancy.” He’s a jeans and polo shirt guy.
Hopping into his car, we head down I-55 South in Saint Louis. He starts guessing, which is uncharacteristic for Dave. I’m getting nervous because the destination isn’t far away and I really need him in the right lane for a quick exit. “I’ll let you know when it’s time to get off the highway. Just stay in the right lane and I’ll tell you which exit to take.”
Less than half an hour into our road trip I see our exit coming up. I’m waiting and waiting until the very last second. “Take this exit, quick!” I command.
“Thanks for the last minute notice Deary,” he says sarcastically. “I thought we were heading to Saint Genevieve again. Inn St. Gemme Beauvais was great.”
Inn St. Gemme Beauvais is America's original French Colonial village and is the oldest continuously operating Bed and Breakfast in Missouri. Saint Genevieve is the oldest city west of the Mississippi River; established in the early 1700s. Lots of historical fun. That was a great mystery trip too.
After cutting through Imperial, Missouri, we enter the charming and quaint town of Kimmswick, established in 1859. I found a Bed and Breakfast there called the Wenom-Drake House. The B&B’s history goes back to 1877 when the house was built by John Wenom.
“You are the only guests this weekend” says the owner. “Let me know if you need anything. Breakfast is from 7 to 9 o'clock. I just finished a batch of fresh chocolate chip cookies. I’ll bring you a tray. Kimmswick is a sleepy little place. Everything shuts down before 5 o’clock. Hope you enjoy your stay,” she says and quickly dashes away to the kitchen.
Our room is on the second floor. They have the kind of staircase seen in the Judy Garland movie “Meet Me in Saint Louis.” Wenon-Drake House is a small B&B; just three bedrooms. There is the Blue Room, Brass Red Room, and the Red Room, each named for its décor.
We have the Blue Room which faces east, giving way to early sunrises and a great view over Kimmswick. We have a double-size Eastlake style walnut bed and the marble top dresser giving the room a feeling of yesteryear. The Blue Room has a private bath whereas the other two rooms share a bath. The room is so pretty and old-world that I almost don’t want to sit on the bed or chairs. Outside our overly huge window is a deck but I’m not eager to weight-test its strength.
There’s a soft knock on our door. It’s the owner with a plate of piping hot cookies. They smell heavenly. She explains, “You can use the parlor for relaxation, reading, or watching a little TV. We have a full, candlelight breakfast with fruit, juice, homemade biscuits and a warm breakfast dish. Plates are garnished with fresh parsley or basil from the garden or greenhouse.”
The Blue Owl Restaurant, in Kimmswick, is one of our favorite places to eat when celebrating something special. It’s why I chose Wenom-Drake so we could walk to lunch. This delightful dining establishment is known for its Caramel Pecan Levee High Apple Pie. It’s a 9 inch tall apple pie weighing in at a whopping 10 pounds and serves 8.
Kimmswick is a shopping town full of out-of-the-ordinary gifts. There's even a linen shop, a Christmas store, and nearly every place has old wooden squeaking floors. They have an Apple Butter Festival and other town activities to keep it thriving.
Laurie stops me exclaiming “I get the picture, and this is wonderful. I cannot wait to plan a mystery date for Kurt. Thanks!”
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