|Letty and Lucy nearly breathless from the hike.|
We were heading West on I-70 pushing our way home, when Lucy nosed us telling it was time to get out. We pulled into a roadside stop between Topeka and Junction City and the first thing we noticed was a granite sign reading "Blue Star Memorial Highway." Since my mother was a staunch Republican from Kansas I am acutely aware of President Eisenhower's role in our interstate highway system, and am forever grateful for his visionary ability to connect our world.
Lucy's nose took us beyond the Blue Star sign and to a hidden path in the brown bushy undergrowth on the side hill. Thanks to Lucy we discovered the most fabulous site in Kansas that I believe many people never see. We climbed past a path that led to the parked cars for the East bound traffic, and continued spiraling upwards, in Kansas no less. This steel sculpture atop a hill of divided highways remained hidden from our sight until we stepped through the winter brown trees and bushes and emerged high over the plains.
When at last the bushes cleared away and we stood alone on top of this brown scene, our eyes were astounded at the vistas with hawks flying below us and around us. For miles we could see in any direction and felt as if we had discovered solitude and nature in the middle of rolling hills and roaring traffic. What a contrast of earth's beauty from the snow covered ground in Wisconsin, to the rolling farm lands in Iowa, to the Flint Hills of Kansas.
|Awestruck beauty in brown tones, as only nature paints.|
Under the tower Lucy found the plate telling us about our discovery. "Guard of the Plains" by James Kirby Johnson, November 1970. What a grand culmination to our Honeymoon Retirement Adventure. I'm so thankful that someone in Kansas had a vision and believed in artwork as a way to entice people's imagination.
|Lucy found the path and the dedication.|