Thursday, May 22, 2014

Let's Talk Texas...

Texas is a big state... but Alaska is bigger.  For all of you Texans that might be reading... did you know that if you divided Alaska in half - Texas would be the third largest state?  But, I'll give you this... you have more miles of road, more roadkill, and more degrees above 80 than Alaska does.  You also have more professional sports teams, but more on that later.

I drove across Texas in 4 days - departing a Walmart Parking lot in El Paso on May 13 and leaving Texas in my rearview mirror (bonus points if can name the obscure country music reference...) on May 17.  Three nights and two days were spent in San Antonio - the parts of the city I saw were beautiful. I spent most of my day at the Riverwalk, but I also visited the Alamo (remember it?) learning a lot more about this particular portion of Texas history.  If you haven't been to San Antonio I would highly recommend a visit.  The "hill country" is beautiful and the Riverwalk is a true urban treasure.
San Antonio Riverwalk
Remember The Alamo!
I also timed my visit to allow me to watch game 5 of the NBA playoff series between the San Antonio Spurs and the Portland Trailblazers.  I was in serious doubt whether this would happen or not, but the Trailblazers came through and won a single game in Portland to force a game 5 back in San Antonio.  The entire city is #GoSpursGo crazy and the stadium was twice as insane.  I had a great time watching the Spurs win game 5 (and the series) and I will be cheering for them throughout the playoffs.  #GoOldGuysGo

Razzle Dazzle...
The View From the Seats I Couldn't Afford

From San Antonio I headed east to Houston.  I had a ticket to watch the Houston Astros play the Chicago White Sox.  This will be one of 4 (at least) MLB games we see this summer.  I'd have to say that of the 4, this one will certainly be the least well attended.  The Astros haven't had a team to be proud of for a couple years now and the attendance showed it.  It wasn't a close game but the evening was beautiful and Minute Maid Park is very nice.  It also was a fairly exciting game.  Adam Dunn crushed a homerun, I made an amazing catch on a fly ball in the 9th inning (I fully expected to make Sports Center that night, but I guess they had other awesome stuff from highly paid professionals to show...), and on my way to the rental car after the game Adam Dunn (who is a very large man) was getting on a very large motorcycle and very kindly signed my ball for me.  I didn't even mention the "Long Haul Bombers" (here is a link - start at about 1:30) and the fireworks that followed the game.  The Astros might not have much to offer on the field but the entertainment value (for me at least) was sky high.

Just ask... I'll give you the play by play on this catch...
On the morning of the 17th I got up, packed up the RV and went to meet David and Lisa Brimberry, who now live in Katy, TX for lunch.  David and Lisa are two of the nicest people on the planet.  Rhonda and I met them at First Baptist Church Eagle River, Alaska during our very first Alaskan summer.  David took both of us (and a bunch of other - still in college - kids) on a float trip down the Kenai River, and later when the first snow came along he helped us find some used cross country skis and showed us how to use them. Rhonda and I are just a couple of people that have been blessed by David and Lisa - there are many many more on that list.  It was great to see them and spend a little bit of time catching up!

Upon leaving Houston I couldn't resist taking a brief detour south to High Island, TX to get my first glimpse of the ocean.  It was worth it.

OK... fine Texas... you have cool beaches and nice people too.  Thanks for letting me visit!


  1. Come on... Somebody must know about Texas in my rear view mirror...?

  2. Not a country music fan, however my mom is, and if I recall correctly that is a Mac Davis song from the late 70's/early 80's... Do I win something?!?!? :-) Looks like you are having a blast - what great family memories!

    1. We have a winner! I'll try to find you that 8 track my parents played over and over in the car...


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