Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Steph's Two-Week Odyssey, Part III: Branson

Greetings once again from your traveling blogger! This post is pre-published; by the time you read it, I will already be at World Con.

As I write this up, I am sitting in a hotel room resting after spending the first half of the day enjoying the sites and attractions of the historic district in Branson. The weather is pretty poor at the moment, so I was unable to head over to Silver Dollar City to check out the artisans. All the same, I enjoyed what little I could fit in before the Rains came.

I started the morning with a ride on the Branson Scenic Railway, which took me on a beautiful trip through the Ozarks into northern Arkansas, then turned around and came back. I think what fascinated me the most were the stories the conductor told about the two now-dead towns whose remnants lay on the route. First was Melva, MO, which was completely leveled by a tornado in the 1920's and never rebuilt. According to the story, two women survived the tornado by sheltering in the local hotel's fireplace. Second on the route was Cricket, AR, which used to be a rail stop until the Great Depression destroyed its economic reason for existence. We've all heard of ghost towns, of course, but the tragedy of both of these communities still touched me all the same.

After I got off the train, I went looking for food...

... and then checked out some of the local shops. My two favorite were the Victorian House and the Dick's 5 & 10. The former sold all sorts of pretties; it took a great deal of willpower not to spend too much money!

The latter was just pure fun. The pics below only sample the silly items they had for sale.

And I think I'll stop there until the next post, in which I will share a few more photos from the non-World Con part of the trip and - maybe - some World Con snapshots as well. It all depends on how much free time I have between now and then.

Thanks for stopping by!

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