Farewell Texas

We are currently sitting in the Qantas lounge enjoying some Chandon bubbly and waiting for our 10.40pm flight. Thank the Lord Jesus for Qantas Club. Here’s some of our pics that haven’t been included an in no particular order. See you in the land of no additives!

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Final days at Fort Worth

We left Fredericksburg and on the way to Fort Worth we decided to experience some culinary delights on the road. I think that may have been a wrong decision. Deano had tried Chicken Fried Steak when I travelled to the States with him ten years ago. I seemed to have forgotten how bad it was. Basically it is a steak pulverised then coated in something similar to a Kentucky fried chicken batter. It is then deep fired – a delicacy! we pulled up at a place claiming it did the best chicken fried steak in the world with over 3 dozen sold. So it must have been good. This is now up there with grits as things you never order when in the US. Don’t do it. I mean it. I also saw a baby in a box at Walmart as part of a fund raising initiative. I would have given a dollar if it was alive.

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Next up was a piece of pie at the Blue Bonnet Cafe. This place was full of pies. Even though I was full from my chicken fried steak (and disturbed) I ordered the pecan pie with no ice cream, Elia-May had the cherry pie with ice cream on the side and CCC had the peach pie with ice cream on it. It looked very scary

peach pie

We got into FW pretty late. So late that every eating establishment near us had closed. Elia-May and I thought maybe we should have a nightcap beer with some chips so hit the Chat Room Bar. Smoking was accepted indoors as were dogs. We even met Snoop Dog’s son. Or so we told him. He told us he was into older ladies. Lovely locals Marion her Chihuahua Penny and Matt bought us shots of Crown Royal so it was all downhill from there. Let’s just say we moved a little slowly the next day.

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Head for the Hills

It was time to leave the big smoke and head to the Texan hill country. 3 days, 3 towns, 3 different experiences.

First up we packed our increasing amount of luggage and headed for Bandera, the Cowboy Capital of the World. Our lodgings were at the Silver Spur Dude Ranch. Before we pulled in we had a beer or tow at the Silver Dollar Bar and saw the table where Hank Williams Sr carved his name into. We also met some friendly locals. At the ranch we went on a hay bale ride, met some longhorns, toasted some marshmallows and made schmos with them . You put some chocolate on a biscuit and top it with a marshmallow. Bring on the diabetes.

After dinner we headed into town with our hosts Teigen the great granddaughter of the ranch owner and Silver Spur worker Dave. I danced a polka with Dave and CCC was twirled around the dance floor by someone with no footwear.

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Next stop Kerrville. The following day we headed to Kerrfest to experience a small town rodeo. What a rodeo it was! The Kerrville folk were mighty hospitable and excited that us Aussies had made it all the way to their event. So impressed that they gave us t-shirts, food, CCC got on the buggy and helped fire t-shirts out to the crowd and Elia-May was invited in the loading corral where all the competing cowboys were and we got to meet the King and Queen of Kerrville Mardi Gras and Lester Meier the Rodeo man. A great time was had by all.

crawfishCrawww tamales 3 meat roll King and Queen Lester and the gals Cowboys Prayer time Cactus

Next day we hit Fredericksburg the German capital of Texas. Yes that’s right German. Our accommodation was Little Acorn. Kind of like chintz on crack. Fredericksburg is like a time warp, all the houses look like the would when they were first settled in the late 1800s. Very pruddy and dinky too. We enjoyed some german beers and some good sausages, a double pork chop, schnitzel, sauerkraut and pumpernickel. There was also some good shopping to be done as well with their antique stores being very reasonably priced.  After dinner we retired back to Little Acorn for a bit of a photo shoot.

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Now we are back on the road in the final stage heading for Fort Worth. We have all had to buy extra luggage to fit all our purchases and are repacking and will see the sights of Fort Worth before hopping on the A380 home.

Waco a gogo

Hey everyone, thanks for your concern y’all about the recent shooting but we had drinks with those bikers last week before we visited the Branch Davidians. Waco is kinda kooky so we were there for 2 hours which was way too long. CCC got delayed in the dollar shop by Jim who had prostate cancer and was  DJ in Waco for 15 years before he retired. Here’s the highlights.

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San Antonio here we come!

San Antonio

We’ll this was an interesting town. We stayed at Inn on the Riverwalk. Arriving after the office had closed we got our instructions and key to the room. Once we got into our room it was definitely a case of photos being a representation of room only. Our room resembled a storage room with a bed and a cupboard with two beds crammed into it. The bed covers were in a high quality as was the bathroom that was the size of a broom closet. As it was too late to talk to someone we decided to go out and have a few drinks. We walked along the Riverwalk, kind of like a canal that was built in the 30’s to stop flooding. The San Antonionians have done a great job in making this structure people friendly for walking and cycling. Parts of the Riverwalk has dining and bars which is primarily aimed at tourists. However, it’s not too tacky. There are also plenty of ducks swimming around, some great houses to see and lots of greenery. Parts of the walk is homeless central especially in the early evening when they are setting up for the night.

We walked along the Riverwalk to the Pearl district. This was a brewery that closed and was derelict for several years. The buildings have been meticulously restored and now have bars and apartments. Think Teneriffe done a whole lot better not pretentious and without the boring wanna bees.

Cured was our restaurant of choice and served a fine selection of charcuterie, salads and some gnocchi too. We explained to our waitress about our accommodation in the flea pit.  The staff felt sorry for us and gave us a complimentary meal as well as some pens. How nice y’all.

After dinner we went to Mi Tierra a San Antonio institution open 24 hours. This is more than just a Mexican restaurant. It is also a bakery where people wait up to 2 hours for their sweets, a restaurant divided into 5 areas that sits 655 people, an underground kitchen making their own tortillas, corn chips and everything else. Once again a case of things being bigger in Texas.

The next day (after being given a new room thankfully) we hit the Riverwalk again this time we headed for the Alamo. They were right, there is no basement in the Alamo. We did ask and all the guides looked a little perplexed. The museum displays featured in Pee Wee’s Big Adventure didn’t exist. It was replaced by the history of guns. Lots of guns. Lots and lots of guns. Time for lunch at the Blue Star Complex where we met our waiter Jason at the Blue Star brewery where we settled in for  some food and refreshing ales. CCC opted for the tasting options whilst Elia-May and myself had a Blue Star Lager. The tasting option consisted of the 12 beers. All beers and food were consumed.

The complex was originally an ice and cold storage complex which was converted to a Contemporary Art Museum, artist studios, restaurants and cafes. Some artists have their own showroom. We popped into Tatum originals which features the art of Robert Tatum and other local artist. It was another great place to visit.

Downtown San Antonio is mighty strange. It has some great historical buildings but no one is on the streets. I mean no one. There are more people on the streets in Brisbane city at 4am in the morning than at San Antonio at 5pm. I don’t know where they are but the only people in the city are tourists with maps.

However it is a great town and one that I wouldn’t mind visiting again (but would stay somewhere else!).

Next it’s off to Bandera, the cowboy capital of the world!!

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Back on the road

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The night before we left Houston there was quite a bit of rain pouring down. It caused some major flooding although, it would help if Houston actually had drains in their gutters. It’s true, I can believe that for such a wealthy city that is also tropical and similar in style to our crazy storms they have a couple of letterbox style slots for drains. It’s ridiculous. Anyway after we saw people on TV canoeing down streets nearby we headed on out to the trip to San Antonio. CCC was driver and decided rather than go the 56 on the 8 to 6 lane highway in driving rain, we’d opt for the 90 and see some sights and have a less stressful time.

So we headed South and stopped off in the driving rain at Huttsville (tiny town not much happened). We had some borderline scary BBQ for lunch and knew we may be in trouble. However, as soon as I saw Head Sausage on the front door I was eager to try. I won’t be returning for seconds, nor will my travelling buddies. We were able to feel a lot better after visiting Shiner Brewery fro a few samples. We arrived in San Antonio safe and dry so good outcome for all.

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Houston we don’t have a problem

We decided that we needed a bit of science in our life. What better place to experience science and technology than at NASA. The Science Centre is about a half hour drive from where we were staying so it was on the road to see some rockets.Not only did we see rockets but the shuttle toot, food supplies, space suits, rocks even deers and cows that they have on the grounds. Before NASA came along it was a cattle farm. They still have a functional cattle farm with longhorns. I suppose after all the budget cuts they had to make money somehow. I could describe everything on offer but it’s probably best just to show you some pics.

Rocket  Ride em cccMission control   Supplies Toot  weaving

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