The Painted Lady – St. James, MO

We are no strangers to the bed and breakfast scene. Stints in Fort Scott and Ironton have given us an idea for expectations of what a bed and breakfast inn should be. And after our great weekend getaway in Ironton last year, we wanted to make our way back to some Missouri Wine Country over the Labor Day weekend.

Hitting the road Friday was a mess. Traffic was not kind, even getting on the road at 3pm. So our first stop was at Canterbury Hill Winery in Jefferson City for some food, drinks, and wind down time. Of course, what we ended up with were two extremely small “wine tastes” and wine glasses with pour lines that were unbecoming of a wine establishment. Either way, we received our nourishment and proceeded on our route.

Arriving at 9pm, we were greeted by Wanda, who was interesting, to say the least. Wanda and Sandy have been married for nearly 40 years, but still had other careers as well. Wanda was the dominant personality, with Sandy the retired armed forces vet being the more soft spoken of the two.

The room we were showed to was spacious, with a nice loveseat and an adequate bathroom, but the most uncomfortable bed that I have ever slept on. Cheap Vegas hotels have had better mattresses. The first night was frankly a little bit of a challenge. However, when we woke up to a delicious breakfast, we mentioned to Wanda that it was slightly uncomfortable and she went out and bought a mattress pad for the bed. Her exact words were “Yes, it is our most firm bed.”…. Who keeps firm beds at a BnB?! I digress….

The weather was looking extremely cooperative, so we started our day driving to and touring Meramec Caverns.

Interesting caves, amazing stalagtites and stalagmites that were more than 5,000 years old… but not quite worth the $20 a person to tour. However, on our way back to the BnB, in search of other attractions to visit, we came across “Bob’s Gasoline Alley” in Cuba, Missouri.

Apparently, this free and extremely elaborate nostalgia attraction off of historic Route 66 is owned by a well respected business owner in the tiny town of Cuba. You can also hold receptions in their gas station styled hangar. We actually took a tour right before a couple’s 50th wedding anniversary.

Lack of night sleep led to passing out for a nap that afternoon, followed by dinner at a renovated guest house in St. James.

The food was delicious, the service was average, and we made the unfortunate delicious mistake of discovering St. James Red Velvet Wine.. mmm…

We happened to find a Rodeo that was happening in Bourbon, Missouri that we decided to check out to end the night.

The next day started of with a walk around Meremac Springs Park and Trout Hatchery. Beautiful scenery and a great site for people watching. Lots of fishermen and women out, but we were up early enough to not be too crowded as we walked around the park.

The next part of the trip, and in my opinion the most fun part, was a trip down memory lane to Kokomo Joe’s Family Fun Center for some mini golf, batting cages, and go-kart racing.

The evening ended with wine, wine, pizza, and more wine. We will not post any of those photos or videos…

Monday morning we made a trip back to the Fugitive Beach for some good sun and dirty rock quarry water to cap off the vacation.

Up next………..?

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