Friday, November 07, 2008

The Eighth Wonder of the World

Many of you who know me were probably surprised by my lack of posts during this historic election. The reason is that I was away from home. The Friday before the election we packed up, voted early, then headed off to what was, for decades, the Eighth Wonder of the World- the hotel at West Baden Springs, Indiana.

The story of this attraction stinks- literally. Back in the 1800's they discovered mineral springs there that produce something they call "Pluto Water"- meaning it smells like what Satan would pass after a three day bender. This stuff is so awful that I saw somebody spill some, and several flies leapt from a pile of doggy-doody, shouting, "Hey- we're trying to eat here!" Naturally, it was immediately touted as a cure-all. A hotel/spa was built, a railroad track laid, and celebrities flocked from around the world to be purged. This hotel burned to the ground in 1901, and what rose from those ashes a year later was like nothing ever seen before.

Approaching the front door...

The lobby at the check-in desk...

The view from check-in to the interior atrium lobby

Entering the atrium... you can just see a huge fireplace where 14-ft logs are burned in the winter on the other side- more than 200 feet away!

The atrium skylight- the largest freespan dome on Earth until 1913, and still the largest that is not a sports arena...

It did my soul a world of good to spend several days before and after the election reminding myself the world is full of beautiful things.
There is more information about West Baden here

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