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Arkansas trip

outdoors travel

I've been busy lately. Some business. Some pleasure. Fortunately I've done a little traveling. My Australian friend came to visit and we decided to head over to Arkansas for a few days. I found a great cabin in the middle of nowhere, yet centrally located to some fun spots to explore. We stayed in one of these and it had everything we could possibly need to entertain ourselves for a couple of days. This particular visitor happens to be a rock scientist, so we made our way to the Crater of Diamonds state park to try our hand at diamond hunting.

We snuck in some beer (in all fairness, it never said not to bring it in) and started digging and sifting. At one point we were feeling proud of our finds only to have our hopes dashed when we took them to the window for evaluation. No diamonds.

On another adventure we went to the national park at Hot Springs and found some fun. The visitor center has a super friendly staff and beautiful stained glass.

We sampled a beer flight at Superior Bathhouse Brewery and had a drink at the Ohio Club across the street. In its prime the place was a hangout for mobsters transporting booze during prohibition and held burlesque shows. An autographed picture of Mae West hangs upstairs where they still have live music. It was a cool day, so we decided to try out the thermal bath experience at Buckstaff where they still do things the old school way. Men and women are separated and told to get naked - I mean ALL THE WAY NUDE - and are given a white sheet for "modesty." You begin with a dip in a whirlpool tub and are given some small cups of warm spring water to drink. Follow that with a sitz bath, a steam cabinet, and then a hot towel wrap. Finish it off with a needle shower that I liked so much more than I thought I would, and after about an hour we left feeling very refreshed. So much so that we dropped into the Arlington Hotel for another drink. It is a beautiful historic hotel, and if you go to Hot Springs it is a must see. The bar in the lobby is intricately painted.

Across from the hotel we noticed a spring bubbling up and we found a short paved trail that gave a nice view from the top of a hill. Look for it if you find yourself there.

It was a short trip that was over almost as soon as it began, but it was certainly worth it.

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