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Go behind the lens with Missouri Life photographer Katie Bell. This summer she shares her adventures as she travels around the state.
My internship at Missouri Life magazine in good ol’ Boonville, Missouri is underway.
I must say, I’m normally not a fan of small towns; they can have a desperate or neglected air about them that is not very becoming. They give me the eerie feeling of going back in time, as if they’re a stagnated bubble, unable or unwilling to move forward and leave their time capsule.
There is a fine line between stagnation and whimsy. Boonville lies on the whimsy side, thankfully.
Boonville doesn’t seem to have the abandoned buildings other small towns have. The old buildings here are from an era much less recent, but they are beautifully upheld and refurbished, and a shop or a resident occupies most. Boonville has character, plain and simple.
It’s hard not to have character when located right next to the grand Missouri River. Where is a better place to have a Missouri magazine than on the iconic Missouri River itself? It was along the river where many settlements was established when the Europeans moved in. It was their transport, their sport, and their livelihood. Our modern cities and towns owe much to the Missouri River. And it’s not too bad to look at either.
Speaking of character, the offices Missouri Life Magazine occupy are chock full of it. They’re located in the historic Hotel Frederick, which is right next to the Missouri River. It has high ceilings, wood floors, oodles of detail, and tall windows; it’s essentially my dream office. Aside from the intern room, I’m allowed to venture around the hotel and work in common areas that are open to guests as well. They are usually vacant and charming, and usually offer that much desired silence. When I came to interview for the internship I thought, “I could definitely get some work done here.” That is always a good sign.
While adventuring around Boonville the other day, I came across another unique feature of the Frederick property: a horse. I was in the back of the building, which overlooks the Missouri River, and thought I was alone. Needless to say I was startled when I came across a horse standing beside the dumpsters. I looked to see if it was tied up, and it was, (a bit loosely). So I thought it safe to take a picture from a little distance. It didn’t seem to mind and we both went on with our day. A horse behind a hotel is not so uncommon in Boonville. A horse and buggy can be seen any time of day on one of the small downtown streets, just trotting along unconcerned about the cars.
Here in this historic-meets-modern town, looking out of an historic hotel, Mac Book Pro all lit up, it seems just right.