Everybody's somebody in Luckenbach
No, we didn't go to Luckenbach, but we were close!
The next big town over is Fredericksburg, which we did visit. But I'm starting in the middle of the story.
For economical reasons, for this trip to Texas we flew in and out of Montreal. We learned a very important lesson there: Canada is a foreign country. And, as it is a foreign country, you need to prove you are a US citizen to fly into the US. I'd flown into and out of Canada before without a hitch, but that was years ago. There doesn't seem to be the same requirement when you drive across the border (although I understand that is going to change), but flying is a whole 'nother thing.
We flew to San Antonio and drove down to Sinton and Corpus Christi to visit with my aunt and uncle. My parents flew down, too, so it was a reunion of sorts. Even my cousin Craig, who I hadn't seen (I'm guessing) in twenty years, flew down, so we were one big happy. Karen and I had a huge piece of Key Lime Pie (which was Karen's only strong wish on this trip) at dinner that night. Mission accomplished.
We took a trip to Mexico, to the little border town of Progresso. We took in the shops and had lunch (cabrito tacos, very tasty!). Again, we had a good time. On the way down we stopped at my old Alma Mater and loaded up on shirts.
Mostly we just visited. There was a lot of talk of Australia (my aunt is part owner of some property down there), and talk about the upcoming (for them) Alaska cruise this summer.
We went to San Antonio a few days later, where Fiesta was being held that whole week. San Antonio is a very multicultural city (it used to be primarily German, if you can believe that) and they have festivals and parties for any old reason. We went to a cactus show (can you believe the excitement?) where I saw plants that would scare me in any other venue (cacti with fur?). Here, too we visited with Mike and his wife Susan (Mike of Rhetoric & Rhythm fame), and their twenty month-old son Nathan. Poor Nathan didn't know what to do about us at first, but he eventually warmed up to us.
Nathan and I played a game I'm now calling "Super Hero." I would squat next to him, point up to the sky, and say, "What's that up in the sky? Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's NATHAN-MAN!" And on the last part I'd toss him up in the air and catch him. He actually liked it, and would come up to me, pointing in the air.
We made a sweep of all the Half Price Books stores, both in Corpus and all four in San Antonio.
Books and music can be a bad addiction.
Our last foray in the Hill Country was to a town called Boerne (pronounced "Bernie") where there was an art walk being held, and then over to Fredericksburg to explore all the shops. In all the years I had lived in Texas, I had never stopped in Fredericksburg to look around. There's lots of neat stuff there, and I waited too long to check it out.
Every time I've flown to Texas, I've asked myself if I could go back and live there. Usually the answer is "no", but this time I got to thinking it wouldn't be all that bad. But then, now that I'm back home, the weather has gotten warmer, the trees have leaf buds out, and it's trout season, and I think I'll stay a little while longer.
I've had the song Luckenbach, Texas playing in my head all morning. It's a special place, a kind of rejuvenating point, or, at least, it used to be. (If it isn't anymore, I don't want to know).