Despite the fact that I was born in Saint Louis and grew up only 45 minutes from the city (on the Illinois side), I never really got to know Saint Louis until I started at Fontbonne.
After adjusting to transferring to Fontbonne, I started to explore Saint Louis more than I had before. I’ve finally realize how much this city has to offer, and I’m loving it! Here are some of my favorite things about Saint Louis:
Saint Louis has a TON of concert halls, so it’s perfect for music lovers. I’ve been to more concerts and music festivals than I can count, in Saint Louis, since the age of 14. A few of the concert halls in the area include: The Pageant, The Fabulous Fox, Peabody Opera House, The Firebird, and Off Broadway. The Verizon Wireless Amphitheater also holds many bigger concerts or music festivals.
I wish I could stay I’ve been to, even a fraction, of the restaurants in the Saint Louis area- unfortunately I have not. What I can say, is that whatever type of food you love is almost guaranteed to be in found in Saint Louis! Sauce Magazine is a great source for places to try in Saint Louis (Fontbonne usually has this magazine in the front doorway of the library if you want to check it out). I also love the checking out Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s when I need to stock my fridge with healthy options.
This applies to Saint Louis overall. Coming from Southern Illinois, variety wasn’t exactly what I grew up with. A variety of culture, food, people, traditions, and beliefs is refreshing. This semester I’m diving into things I’ve never been exposed to before. I will be visiting a Buddhist temple for my World Religions class and writing a paper on my experience. In my Food Pathways of Diverse Groups I will be cooking foods from different religions and cultures around the world all semester long. Sometimes it can be hard to tackle new experiences head on, but I believe it’s one of the best things a person can do to be a well-rounded, culturally-sensitive person. Learn something new every day!
If you are into music and pop culture, you probably think of Justin Timberlake when you hear the initials J.T. However, before the modern J.T. was James Taylor. He was the original, considering he first rose to fame in the 1970s. He continues to be an outstanding singer, songwriter, and guitarist, and I feel lucky to have the opportunity to see him perform live.
The people that I went to the concert with were my mom, her best friend, and her husband. This is the same group that I went to the Paul McCartney concert with a couple years ago. They tend to be my buddies for the oldies concerts. I like a wide variety of modern music, but part of me has an old soul when it comes to my music taste. James Taylor has a very classic and soothing sound. It made for such a pleasant night. Also, it was actually nice weather, despite the fact that it was in the middle of summer in St. Louis. The show was at Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre, which is an outdoor theatre. We had lawn seats, which is something I had never experienced before. I just love seeing live shows, and this was another one I had looked forward to for a long time. And there are more coming up soon! Next are Miley Cyrus (which was postponed from April) and then One Direction (for the second time!). Like I said before, I listen to a variety of music styles, obviously. Bring on the summer shows!
My summer has continued to be absolutely fabulous. Over the weekend, I took a trip to Kansas City for one reason and one reason only: the One Direction concert! This is the closest they were going to be to St. Louis. This major event has been a long time coming. I bought tickets 13 months before the actual concert. I have never counted down the days for something for such a long time. But, the wait was all worth it. I took my cousin and the two girls that I babysit, and we had the time of our lives.
As soon as we got to the hotel, we got ready. We put on all our One Direction gear. Shirts, jewelry, shoes, tattoos, you name it. We already had our light-up posters finished. When we got to the Sprint Center, we waited outside for almost two hours before we finally got in. By the time we bought our souvenirs and such, we missed a little bit of the opener, a band called 5 Seconds of Summer. I wasn’t too concerned about that though. I just wanted 1D! When they first came out, I immediately started crying. When I see my favorite singers, I go absolutely crazy. I screamed and jumped the entire two and half hours that they performed. It was so much fun! They sang all the songs that I wanted them to. I wasn’t disappointed by anything. I was blown away. They sounded even better live than they do on CD. Despite all the screaming fans, I could still hear them (most of the time). I have tons of pictures and posters of One Direction all over my room (including a cardboard cutout), so it was extremely exciting to be able to see them live.
Now my major summer events have come to a close. I feel so lucky to have done so many fun things. The next thing to count down the days to is the start of the next school year!
This past weekend I experienced something beyond my wildest dreams by attending the Lady Gaga concert. I had a lot of fun, and words cannot even describe her show. The massive castle-inspired set pieces, magnificent couture dresses, high-tech effects, talented dancers, and powerhouse vocals were all over the top in every way possible. But then again, it is Lady Gaga we’re talking about here, so we should expect no less. This past Saturday at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, I not only had the opportunity of watching an amazing performance by someone that has an extraordinary affection for her fans, but also hearing a very motivational speech. When it comes to not letting other people drag you down, Lady Gaga (whom also occasionally refers to herself as Mother Monster) is the person to look up to. No matter how many times she heard the word “no” and was told to change by producers in the music industry, that only made her stronger. Life is too short to act like somebody you don’t want to be. She never loses sight of who she is. Her confidence and ability to truly not care what others think is inspirational. Thank you, Lady Gaga, for teaching so many people that it’s okay to be yourself and be different. In fact, it’s encouraged.