Mr. Keith and I took a Sunday drive just around Cheyenne to check out some places we’d earlier driven past. In late April we visited the Botanical Gardens, but the grounds had not been planted yet. This time there were lovely plots of flowers everywhere. I didn’t take any photos of the flowers, not sure why, but we did love this walkway through a swampy area next to a tiny, reedy lake where some boys were fishing. The signposts had little blurbs about life in the marsh. It was a delightful place to walk, teeming with dragonflies and red-winged blackbirds along with other wiggly critters in the deep grass.
There is a larger lake near the Gardens, also. Small groups of people, adults and kids, lined the rail fence with their fishing poles propped up, hoping for a catch. I liked this view of some of the many ducks and geese keeping cool on a hot day. Old, gnarly willow trees shade the shoreline, and huge cottonwoods add to the beauty of this place. I’ve read that the cottonwood is the Wyoming state tree.
The Wyoming Governors’ mansion, built in 1905 at a cost of $33,000 and used to house the Governors and their families through 1976, is a commanding sight. It’s open to the public, restored to its former glory to the tune of $1,000,000, and is right near to the majestic State Capitol building, which we will tour on another day. The tour guide showed us a video about the history of the 4 story mansion and then left us alone to wander through the rooms as we liked. Here’s a funny – I’ve begun using my cane when I know we’ll be doing lots of walking, just to give some stability to my old arthritic hip, and when she saw it, she told me I could maybe just make it up to the second floor but not the third floor or the basement because the staircases were narrow and steep. Hmm – throw me a challenge! The stairs were indeed steep, but we had no trouble, and it was well worth the climb. The rooms are beautiful. I especially liked the grand piano we found in the library!
Hunger pangs hit us after our visit to the mansion so we headed for fast food. Frequently we will each want to visit a different restaurant. Mr Keith chose Taco Bell and I preferred McDonald’s, so we drove through both, got tacos for Keith and an Angus burger for me, and headed down to Holliday Park where we ate and watched the large population of Canada geese and these domestic white geese, with a few Mallard ducks mixed in. I wish I had been quick enough to snap the hilarious sight of about 50 Canada geese following a little boy who was tossing pieces of bread to them. He truly was the Pied Piper! I did put my camera into action when these white beauties came up to the car. They quickly gobbled up the remainder of my hamburger bun, squawking loudly the whole time. We will come another day with plenty of bread crumbs and let ourselves be entertained by these seasoned moochers. There is lots to see in Cheyenne, enough to keep us busy for the rest of the summer!