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Monday, January 29, 2007

Vacationing in the Southwest, Alpine to Austin, TX

Another entry written during our last days on vacation:

By the time we cross the border from New Mexico to west Texas in the late afternoon, I’m bored with driving and happily give the wheel to D for the final 3 hours to Alpine. It’s been almost a week since his hernia surgery, and although he’s not ready to run a marathon, the driving around here is pretty easy. Flat roads, no traffic, and broad daylight.

So you’ve never heard about all the fun things to do in west Texas? Well … people don’t usually vacation in west Texas, unless they’ve got family to visit like we do, or they’re going all the way to the Big Bend National Park, which is even further off the beaten track than our destination.
We, however, spend 2 very pleasant days catching up with D’s brother. We try to photograph the deer and roadrunner traipsing about, but they won’t cooperate. D’s little mom is also here for a few days, so you know we don’t miss any meals.

The next morning we start the 6 hour drive east to Austin. When we leave Alpine, it’s just us and a few pickup trucks. Once we make it onto IH 10, it’s just us, a few pickup trucks, and the longhaul trucks. No towns, no billboards, and no radio reception. It starts to get a bit monotonous. The long haulers bear names like E.L. Farmer and Co., Fleetwood Transportation, and Sunbelt Express. We’re so restless, I bet D that the next truck we pass won’t have any e’s in the name of the trucking company. He says 20 bucks, but I say 5. It’s Paul A. Ward Trucking Co! What are the odds! Should have made it 20.

The drive gets much more interesting when we get into the Texas hill country. It's beautiful here, even in the winter. And we get to stay with friends just outside of Austin! These next photos are mostly for D’s brother, who hasn‘t yet seen their place. Here’s the entrance to their property (make note of the double C logo on the fence). There’s a shed off to the right, and the house is off to the left.
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Here’s their cute little house. The left half is the guest house we stay in and the right half is their residence.
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Our hosts maintain an “open space” or “ag” exemption on their property taxes by fencing off the acre or two around their house and running livestock on the rest. So out the front door, just on the other side of the wire fence, cows:
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And this is Sunny, their lovable 7 month old Border Collie:
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P1000661P1000662Sunny tries to herd me when I run around the yard playing with her and she can’t stop picking on the sweet cat. Lots of energy that one. I really miss my Libby.

These girls are Chula and Tootsie, mini dachshunds, who are house dogs and can be coaxed under the covers with us. See the white double C logo on Tootsie’s hip?
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That’s a freeze brand,
which I thought they only did with livestock.
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Isn’t this the coolest place? We really like it, and like our hosts even more.


Ok, is this interesting, or like being subjected to someone's home movies? I've got a few more Texas photos to share, and then the vacation is over. :)

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2 Comments:

Blogger La Cabeza Grande said...

I love vacation photos so, for me, this is more like enjoying someone's home movies.

6:58 AM  
Blogger stickchick said...

This was VERY enjoyable and better then the drive in real life (been there, done that and your version was MUCH nicer!!!)

Loving the doggies and BIG longhorns. They are always amazing to me, and kinda scary.

Hope you are having loads of fun, you might not wanna come home!!

1:45 PM  

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