Sunday, 08 June, 2003

Eureka Springs

Eureka Springs looks like a 70's hippie colony that turned into a tourist town.  For a town of less than 2,500 people, it has a surprising number of hotels, motels, bed-and-breakfast, and RV parks.  There are many more trinket and curio shops than I remember Durango, CO having, and Durango is much bigger and easier to get to.

We went to brunch early this afternoon, and then my brother took us on a brief guided tour of the area.  Saint Elizabeth Catholic Church is unique in that you enter the grounds through the bell tower that's at the top of the hill.  The sidewalk down to the grounds is flanked on one side by white marble statues of the 12 Stations of the Cross.  The grounds themselves are beautifully landscaped, with many statues placed among the plants.  The church is stone, rather small inside, but very nicely appointed.  It's been a while since I was inside a Catholic church.  I was surprised and pleased that the figure of a crucified Christ wasn't the central feature of the altar.

Thorncrown Chapel is a privately-owned glass and wood chapel in the hills just west of Eureka Springs.  The chapel is nestled among the trees a short walk from the parking lot off Arkansas highway 62.  Pictures cannot begin to capture the chapel's beauty, and the feeling of sitting inside this building, listening to the quiet music and just contemplating...whatever.  The word "tranquil" comes to mind.  I will have to ride my bike out there in the morning when I have a little more time to sit and meditate.