Janice Williams Loves Austin And sometimes I write about it.

August 21, 2011

Reunion Past

Filed under: Music — Janice @ 5:33 pm

I’m a week past the reunion and still living among the wreckage the reunion brings. After a few weeks of late nights computing and putting things together for the family, my office is piled high with notebooks and unread mail, papers and trash. My car hasn’t been cleaned out and still has the card table that needs to go back to my friend Denise this week. I have many thank you notes to write and information that was given to me at the reunion that needs to be documented and entered into the family record. And I just need some more rest! That one day off after the reunion was not enough, apparently, to make me feel like I can tackle any of these things, because they all sit here undone.

Next on the list, really, is to sort through the pictures I took and see what needs to be sent out in my annual “Cunningham letter.” Each year I write a wrap-up letter for my mom and aunts so they know what they missed in Comanche. I will probably post it here or on my regular webpage, too, in case the world needs to see it. Actually, the world may get a slightly edited version, their version usually includes some family gossip that can’t be told to everyone!

August 15, 2011

Retirement

Filed under: At home,Food — Janice @ 10:26 pm

I’ve been thinking today about the changes in our world as it applies to retirement. I was emptying a big box of financial things and company newsletters that had belonged to my dad (he died almost 5 years ago and I’m finally getting around to sorting through this pile). I found a list of men in his company, organized by year and retirement dates. I don’t know that they were forced to retire when they turned 65, but I assume this was at least a list of when they would be turning 65. It was pretty amazing to see this long list with about 20 to 25 men turning 65 each year and being scheduled for retirement.

My dad and mom regularly went to retirement parties at Dad’s company (Colorado Interstate Gas, Co.). I know they didn’t go to 25 a year, but I guess they went to most of the parties for men that daddy worked with and I know that they even sometimes traveled to Colorado for these parties for men that worked in those offices.

Before I go further, you’ll notice I have said there were men’s names on this list and they went to men’s retirement parties. I know some women worked at CIG, but if they were anything other than secretaries, I never heard about them. This was a company of men and, considering that their jobs were in land surveying and pipeline construction, that makes sense. I wonder if there are women in those kinds of companies now at least in the engineering department?

These lists made me wonder about companies in our time and how often someone gets to retire. Especially get to retire after 20 or 30 or even 40 years with the company? I think Daddy had worked for them for 37 years when he retired and he retired before he was 65. I know of only one or two people in my entire company that are over 60.

On the other side of the equation, I can understand the government’s bad position with Social Security benefits and people’s long lives today. On Dad’s list, he had marked through the names of men who had died. The list seemed to be from about 1980 and included the men who had retired within the last 10 years and many of them were already dead. Even among the list of those slated to be retired in the future, lines had been drawn through plenty with notations that they had died and what killed them. Morbidly, Dad had written “heart attack” or “car wreck” or “cancer” beside many of them. Even just 30 years ago, living to retirement or much beyond was a great accomplishment. The life span average hasn’t increased, but it seems more and more that if you DO make it past 65 your chances of living past 75 are increasing.

I also noticed on the list a lot of men with the notation “fired in 1983.” I remember that terrible time. The company was making some serious cutbacks and letting a lot of men go. One especially was a family friend and I know it really bothered Daddy that the company was doing that. Though he was very grateful to get to keep his job, it was not the same after that point. There wasn’t as much work to do and he had that seem feeling of insecurity that I have had for the last 10 years. Fortunately, he did make it to an early retirement and got to enjoy a lot of travel and fun and grandsons over the next 16 years.

I don’t want to roll back the clocks to where men made up the workforce, but I wouldn’t mind having a corporate culture in our nation where employees weren’t laid off so easily and at the first sign of trouble. I would love for Social Security to be there to cushion retirement for everyone, but I also see that it can’t and changes need to be made. I really hope there is some Social Security left for me in another 15 years or so (that’s assuming I am able to keep working that long). That doesn’t sound like much time! It sure doesn’t sound like much time to put together a stock portfolio and a retirement fund.

August 14, 2011

Jiggity Jig

Filed under: Family,Food,Genealogy,Travel — Janice @ 10:17 pm

I’m very happy to be home and ready to sleep in my own bed again. I just wish I could have brought some of the rain back from Comanche County with me. Not only did we have the pleasant light rains yesterday morning that cooled everything for the reunion last night (and my cemetery jaunts yesterday), we had a big downpour this afternoon just at the end of the reunion when only the diehards were still on hand. I had a good long visit with Tommie Lee, a dear favorite cousin, but from a different family so not at the reunion, and learned about how bad things are for her daughter and son-in-law’s cows. Hay that was $50 a bale just a short while back is now going for $140 and climbing… and that’s IF you can find someone that has some. It is a desperate time for stock raisers. Fortunately, Roger, the farmer/rancher, has put in a crop and this rain should get it up enough to bale and have some feed for their cows.

Roger came by to see me while I was visiting and brought me four beautiful fresh peaches from a real tree. I can’t remember the last time I at a peach that wasn’t bought at a fruit stand or the store. It smelled and tasted exactly like my childhood. When I got them home I peeled them and Mark and I ate them before I even brought in all the bags.

I also brought home peanuts, a primary crop in Comanche. Tommie has a neighbor that is very generous and gives her LOTS of peanuts. She always give me peanuts, but this time she sent me home with THREE GALLONS of peanuts because he had told her there was more coming soon and she needed to clean out her refrigerator. I know George Washington Carver came up with 2000 uses for the peanut. I wish I knew one or two beyond “candy” and “snack” and “obsession.”

The visit at Tommie’s beautiful sweet house was the end of the day, there was lots before it, but it all began about 5 a.m. so I’m going to go to bed and see what I can remember about it all tomorrow.

August 13, 2011

Rain for the Reunion

Filed under: Music — Janice @ 10:42 pm

My best friend Beth called from Ohio this morning. I told her that I was in Comanche for the reunion “and it’s raining!” She said, “Oh, I’m sorry.” I had to explain that, NO, this was wonderful. No one in Texas is going to be unhappy that it is raining.

It rained through the morning and things were cool and pleasant tonight at the reunion grounds. The group was probably smaller than usual and that could be expected with the heat this summer, but we all had a wonderful time enjoying hotdogs cooked over the grill and reuniting.

I followed through on most of my plans for the day. Rain changed things only slightly. I made it to the library for a good visit with my distant cousin Margaret, one of the founders of the library 50 years ago and their librarian that entire time, too. She showed me her current research projects and gave me some guidance on my queries.

Today I went to the Gardens of Memory cemetery and found the grave of our cousin “Bud” who died about 5 years ago. She was one of my absolute favorites from the reunion for all the years she was here. Beautiful, quick witted, acerbic… she also made the best pecan pies. I hadn’t been back to her grave since her funeral so I was glad I could find it and put some flowers out (though they may take them away soon because she didn’t have a vase and this is one of the more fussy perpetual care cemeteries). I also found the grave of my cousin Joe Lee. I had never been there to visit it.

I went to the Oakwood Cemetery in town, too. It is huge and I’ve only driven by it and never explored it much. I did find some graves of some of the oldest members of family. There are still a few people I would like to go back at some point and find their graves.

I went to the Comanche Museum next. It is a big museum. This time I went armed with my new little scanner and was able to scan some cool things, well, like this picture:

CUNNINGHAM DAY 2 055

If you don’t know what these people are doing, they are “dirt sitting.” Yes, I need to write more in depth about the dirt sitting at my cousin John Reese’s ranch. He made a lot of money from it and I’m happy to have a great picture like this.

I found many many cousins at the museum, but was most pleased to find my little cousin Susie, who loved the schoolroom setting they have since she is about to enter kindergarten herself.

CUNNINGHAM PHOTOS DAY 2 119

She is 5 years old and this is her sixth reunion. That’s the kind of dedication and devotion I like!

From the museum on to Newburg, Texas, which is actually the community that my family comes from. I visited the cemetery and was able to decorate the graves and visit everyone… my favorite great aunt Det (Susie’s great-great-grandmother), my great-grandparents, great-great-grandparents, and great-great-great-grandparents. And I wasn’t limited to the Cunningham family here, either. Plenty of other relations, too.

Finally, to the reunion grounds and lots of visiting and catching up with lots and lots of people I love and a few old coots. That is a joke. Maybe.

I need to go to bed, but my mind is still racing. I will be up very very early to be out to the reunion grounds as the sun comes up. There’s not very many things in this world that will get me out of bed that early on a day off, but the breakfast at the Cunningham Reunion is the best meal I have all year.

On the Comanche Trail

Filed under: Genealogy,Travel — Janice @ 12:08 am

I’m in Comanche, Texas, tonight. If you say, “Where?” you are not alone. It’s in Central Texas somewhere between Stephenville, Brownwood, and Lampasas. Of course, many people I’ve excitedly told about my trip didn’t know where those towns were either.

It takes about 45 minutes to get from my house to the North San Gabriel River on 183. At that point I feel like I’m finally on my way to Comanche. On to Lampasas and then… glorious rain! It was so great to see what rain was like again. There were scattered showers on to Goldthwaite and they brought the temperatures down considerably.

I stopped today at the Mills County Museum. I’ve passed it many times and wanted to stop, but it is closed or I don’t have time. Today all the planets aligned and I stopped in.

Some museums might have nice displays of what the town dentist’s office looked like in the old days, but they don’t really have much good history. This one was a great combo. Nice displays for people just curious about the past and some solid information for people like me, too. There was a very nice volunteer who helped me find obituaries and told me a lot about a cousin in our family who had been a POW in WWII.

I flipped through a big register of people who had stayed in the Mills County jail in 1945. Pretty interesting to see what people were arrested for then (mostly “drunk,” but also a murder, child abandonment, and “hot check” that I read as “hot chick” and didn’t know that was illegal). There also weren’t as many records kept as today. In some instances the “name” listed was just “old man” or “Negro.”

My great-great-grandfather’s brother George Washington Cunningham was the first sheriff of Mills County. He and his wife Eliza and their children lived at the jail and she cooked for the prisoners along with her family. An interesting way of life. I wonder what the prisoners were in for at that time (around 1890)?

After keeping the volunteer a half hour past their closing time, I went on to Brownwood and Grosvenor. My mom grew up in Grosvenor and my grandfather was the school superintendent there in the 1930s. Mom and I made a trip to the Cunningham Reunion in 1987 and had gone through there and she told me stories of those days. I hadn’t been back since.

Back to Brownwood and dinner at the best restaurant in Texas: Underwood’s BBQ. If I lived in Brownwood, I might get to try their chicken fried steak or a fried chicken dinner, but since I only eat there once a year, I always have the delicious barbecued steak.

I had cherry cobbler tonight. A few years ago I decided to try the peach cobbler instead. I called Mother that night and told her I had tried the peach instead of the cherry. She solemnly said, “That was a mistake.” She was right so it will always be cherry from now on (unless I have enough appetite to have both).

I had hoped to make it by a cemetery (or 3) before the sun set, but I didn’t make it. It got dark so I came on back to Comanche and checked into this wonderful hotel. It is mainly wonderful because it is nice and new and clean and IN Comanche. I spent a lot of years staying at run-down motels in Comanche or run-down motels in Brownwood or occasionally a nice place in Brownwood (40 miles from the reunion). I’ve also imposed on a cousin a few times, too. None of those are nearly as nice as this great hotel and I’m here for 2 great nights.

Tomorrow will be a full day with a trip to the cemetery to put out flowers on the graves, do some research at the library, drop by the Comanche museum, and then on to the reunion for visiting and hotdogs.

August 11, 2011

Live Music

Filed under: Austin,Music — Janice @ 10:38 pm

It has been so long since I’ve gone out to see live music and reported on it, I know I’m going to be a poor reporter. I wrote this in my head as each act went on and off, but now you’ll only get the condensed version.

Tonight was the 5th anniversary celebration of Jenni Finlay Promotions. Jenni is a great friend and I knew her when she was promoting records from a record company in Houston. She used to call me at the radio station and we finally met when she was in town and she met me at TC’s on the east side to see Mark play. Since then she’s moved to Austin, started a business, and become my neighbor!

Her anniversary party always occurs on the Thursday before my reunion. It seems like I’m always crazy busy the week of the reunion (and this week has been no exception), but it was great fun to go with my friend Denise and see a great line-up of acts that Jenni works with and promotes. It all happened at the Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos and it was great music at a great pace. No lag time, no changing of the bands, just 30 minutes from and artist, mostly solo, one right after another.

I got to see Owen Temple, who I hadn’t seen in a long time and I really like. He made an impression tonight with the song with the lyric “one day closer to rain.” I decided that is how I’m going to look at this drought. Instead of counting how long is has been since that last tiny shower we had on June 5 (67 days), I will see the glass half full and say we are one day closer to rain.

Next up was Betty Soo, accompanied by Will Sexton. I have heard some of her music on the web and on KUT, but I have never seen Betty Soo live. She is beautiful and has a fabulous voice and clever songs and lyrics. A winner.

Matt the Electrician played. I had booked him at the Shady Grove a few years back and that was the only time I had seen him before. This was a better setting where he could be heard so clearly. I was really in awe of how good his guitar sounded (and I don’t normally notice such things) when he commented that this was a brand new guitar that had just been completed (custom made) the day before. He also has witty lyrics and a cute song about needing a battery and having to go to WalMart to get it.

Will Sexton played and I have never heard him do a solo show, surprisingly. He is always the go-to guy for musicians to want in their band as a guitar player, but he was a great singer on his own. I liked his version of “All Just To Get To You” (Joe Ely’s).

Ray Wylie Hubbard played and you can’t ever go wrong with Ray. You can’t listen to Ray Wylie Hubbard’s albums and know who he is. You have to see him live and hear those witticisms that I’ve heard before, but they always make me laugh again. Commenting after an “singalong” song:  Maybe you need to take some of that money you spend on beer and get yourself a metronome and a pitch pipe.

Next up was Joe Pug. I have played his music in my current job. He is from Chicago and making a name for himself in Americana and sort of “adult pop.” He is living in Austin, now, Jenni tells me. He was nothing like I expected. I expected maybe a short bald, 40-ish, studious fellow, but he was a young, handsome, blue-eyed, folk singer. And I liked him too!

Finally James McMurtry to wrap up a stellar line-up. My bedtime and reunion preparations were calling me so I had to call it a night without staying for James, which is a shame because I knew he could bring the house down.

It was fun. And now I’m off to the reunion that has kept me from this blog for the last week or two or three or ten.

August 3, 2011

Austin’s Best Dressed

Filed under: Austin — Janice @ 9:25 pm

GQ magazine just named Austin the 18th worst dressed city in the country. Boston came in at #1. If you know me and my fashion style, you know I’m not going to care much what GQ says about my city or any city. I certainly don’t disagree with them if you are talking about cities that dress in a “GQ style,” but we dress in our own individual way here and that’s fine with me.

I remember when I got a job downtown a few years back and our office was in the same offices with a law firm. I was a little concerned that my laid back clothing and our laid back office (we booked music, we didn’t have to be GQ) would not fit well in their office. As I drove into work, I was taking my own personal survey of the men on the street and how many were wearing ties. My survey might not accurately reflect true figures though because I had to count a guy that had on a white shirt and a tie, but he also had on bulky plaid shorts and flip-flops. Should that “count”?

I needn’t have worried about how we fit into that office. The lawyers might put on a suit if they had a court appearance, but on non-court days they were in jeans along with their paralegals and office staff. Well, except for my friend that worked there who is always dressed to the nines, even if it is in jeans.

When my old roommate Diane and I moved to Dallas we would spot women and say “She’s Dallas!” That usually meant big hair and lots of makeup and a floral outfit of some kind. This was the 80s. We did our very best to fit into that scene. In Dallas there didn’t really seem to be much choice. Once I found my way back into radio there I did find a more comfortable style of clothing that works in radio nationwide.

But, boy, when we moved to Austin, it really didn’t matter what we wore anymore. It truly was something that we noticed all around us. I remember going to eat at a Macaroni Grill in the early days down here. In Dallas if we had gone to a Macaroni Grill we would dress up a tiny bit. And we did that here, too. At least not wearing shorts and flip-flops. Looking around we could see that was not a concern in Austin. Maybe I’ve never been to the highest priced restaurants in town, but those on the upper end of our living scale are still quite welcoming to the shorts-and-flip-flops crowd. Of course, the restaurants we are at the most probably don’t even require shirts and shoes, but then, they don’t have much service either.

August 2, 2011

Thoughts on Reading

Filed under: Family,Reading — Janice @ 11:36 pm

I visited with a friend tonight and she was telling me about the list of 700 or so books she has read in the last 4 years. Yikes. I don’t know if I’ve finished 70 books in the last 4 years. My Internet habit has replaced my television habit that replaced my reading habit long ago.

Not that I don’t read. I really do. Right now I am reading 4 books. Sarah Bird’s latest “The Gap Year” is at the top of the list and it is the reason I look forward to going to bed and getting in a few chapters before I have to make myself sleep. On hold for the moment is the autobiography of Keith Richards. I had to put it aside to read a book for my book club last month (“The Gay Place” by Billy Lee Brammer) and there it sits. I’ve got a book about Comanche Indians on the Texas Plains called “Empire of the Summer Moon” going and I keep it in the car for when I go out for lunch alone or get stuck somewhere for a while. Sadly, that isn’t often enough and that book has been neglected for a while. And I just began “The Art of Racing in the Rain” at the recommendation of my friend Beth. If I read as fast as my friend Susan (or as much) I would have finished those all before this paragraph was written.

I definitely grew up with a mother who read constantly. In the summer, when I was home to observe her, I would see her do the gardening in the morning and get the house clean and then she would lay down on the bed to read for a  while in the afternoon before making dinner. After dinner and after some TV with the family, she was usually the first to retire to the bedroom so she could read.

My Dad was a gas pipeline land surveyor and his job frequently took him out of town from Monday through Friday or even for two weeks at a time. Those summer days when he was gone seemed to stretch forever. Without his leaving in the morning and arrival in the evening to give the day structure, we three just floated on a never-ending bookmobile. Mom would pull the mattress off of her bed onto the floor and Mackie and I would sleep on the floor mattress and she would sleep on the mattress that was still on the bed. We three would read and read and read late into the night. That is a very pleasant memory for me. The windows wide open because the nights are so cool in the summer in the Panhandle and the only sounds were from a coyote in the distance or our dog outside the window and pages turning in the room.

We also were allowed to read at the dinner table when Daddy was out of town. That was a real treat, too. Probably a treat for Mother more than anyone!

We made a lot of trips to the library in Canyon in the summer. Canyon had the best library in the world when I was in junior high. It was a long narrow military building of some kind, like barracks. I don’t know if it had been moved onto that lot, just off of the square in Canyon, or if it was originally there. It was dark and crowded and you could lose yourself in there for a long long time. When I was in high school they moved into a large modern spacious and airy new building and I never got the same enjoyment from it. There’s something about those dark crowded shelves that made me feel like I was discovering something that no one else knew about.

July 29, 2011

A Grave Mystery

Filed under: Music — Janice @ 10:59 pm

Our overnight trip to the Texas Hill Country was coming to a close and we were now close to home. Mark had asked on the trip out if there were any Cunninghams buried in the Hill Country. He was concerned, I think, that I might suffer from withdrawal without a cemetery trip. I told him I would be fine and bit my tongue every time a story about a dead person came to mind (of course there was no need, Mark is a great audience).

Finally, we are nearing our final destination and getting close to Dripping Springs. Ten years ago we visited a grave in Dripping Springs and Mark had mentioned recently that he would like to go that cemetery again. Of course, I’m all for that! I just didn’t expect it to be on this trip, but I’m glad it was. Mark asked if I could remember enough to navigate us back to this cemetery. I knew that I could and we started on a parallel road with 290 heading toward Dripping Springs.

The grave we were going to see belongs to my great-great-great-grandfather James Powel Hallford who came to Texas with his wife Sarah Medlin Hallford and her sisters and their husbands, one who was married to James’s brother. They all came to Texas early in Statehood and settled around Grapevine, Texas, and were the earliest settlers of Southlake, Grapevine, Flower Mound, Denton, and more. Around the end of the Civil War, several of them relocated to Hays County and lived around Dripping Springs. James Powel Hallford died there in 1868 and was buried in this small cemetery. It was really an adventure to find it 10 years ago and it was not easy. We hunted high and low and had to stop and ask for directions and somehow make it through a locked gate onto private property and then not get shot while we were there. We were up for just such an adventure again.

I had no trouble finding the locked gate again. It had not changed. I don’t really remember how we made it through last time. This time we crawled under the gate. Yes, too hefty 50+-year-olds scooching under a big iron gate that had cedar posts hanging underneath it specifically to keep people out. It didn’t work.

We made it onto this beautiful ranch and started walking toward the cemetery. We came up to a fork and went toward the storage buildings and abandoned cars that are there. No cemetery. We go the other way. No cemetery. We go further and further, though we knew we had not walked nearly this far when we came here before, but where would a cemetery go? I began hallucinating about this point. Either because it was 105 outside and we were in the brightest sunshine or because I was determined to find my cemetery. I swear, I would see a tombstone sticking up as plain as could be and I would get closer and it would have just melted away. Or a solid, squared, on-the-ground stone would catch my eye and I’d plow through the brush only to find it was a limestone rock. We walk all the way back and back to the house and back this way and that and then started back out where we came in, still not giving up, and looking closer on that trail. We hadn’t been paying as much attention on that stretch of path because we were sure when we came in that the cemetery was farther up the road, but this time we looked more closely and there is was, hidden in the trees and weeds.

The cemetery had deteriorated a lot since our last visit, I think. I recall being able to read the gravestone more clearly last time, but the dates now are indistinguishable. The name can still be read if you know what it says already. There are probably 20 graves with gravestones that have names or appear to have a name and at least 20 more just marked with rocks. That means there could be so many more that aren’t really marked at all. This is the grave of my g-g-g-grandfather Hallford:

Yes, you’re looking at the inscribed part. There was no way to take a picture of it where you could actually read it. It was more a matter of touch and being a good detective to know what it says. Mark and I discussed the life story of this Hallford and I wondered again, for the millionth time, where his wife is buried. I’ve seen sources that say she died “after 1880 in Hays County,” but I believe that Hays County part is just an assumption based on seeing her in the 1880 census in Hays County and not finding her later. But I found her later. She was living in Comanche County in 1900 with her son (my great-great-grandfather) and his family and she was 88. That is where her trail goes cold. I know at that point she only had 2 living children of the 10 she had given birth to, but I don’t know who the other one was besides my great-great-grandfather. He died in 1902 and — if she was still alive at that time — I suspect she might have gone on to live with the last living child. I need to do more research one day and see what else can be discovered.

We had our photographs and my cemetery fix and we tromped back to the gate again and scooched once again. A harder scooch this time because it was more uphill. We were on our way again. We stopped at the Sonic to re-hydrate (no, no malt or ice cream this time) and I checked my email. I had seen an email earlier that I hadn’t opened, but I opened it this time. It was a request sent to me through findagrave.com, one of my favorite sites for genealogy. A woman was writing to thank me for putting up the findagrave memorial for James Powel Hallford — the grave we had just visited for the first time in 10 years — and wondering where his wife was buried– the same question we had just debated. It all was a spooky coincidence that makes me want to find out where Sarah is buried. That will be one of my next genealogy quests.

July 28, 2011

Comfort, Texas

Filed under: Music — Janice @ 10:48 pm

Comfort is one of my favorite towns in Texas. Mark and I discovered it (for ourselves, I believe many other Texans had discovered it long before we got there) on our honeymoon. We stayed at the fabulous Ingenhuett-Faust Hotel B&B for a couple of nights on our honeymoon and have been back a couple of times since. It’s one of the few B&B’s that I happily go back to and recommend without qualms. I was going to say “without reservation,” but it is a good idea to get a reservation. Ha!

What really saddened us on this trip to Comfort was finding out that the old general store on main street had burned sometime in the past few years. We had not heard about it.

It was really a step back into history to go into that store. They sold hardware and gardening things along with the newspaper and some staples. It was fun to walk up and down the aisles and say, “Oh, look, Daddy had one of these in his garage.” I think we bought our last rain gauge there just because that was something we needed and it was fun to get to buy something from them. We talked to a clerk at another store in town and heard more of the sad story. Of course the old building didn’t have insurance and the owner lost so much in it and after about a year he committed suicide. With no wife or children, distant relatives inherited it and it sat for a long time with no changes. Finally someone has bought the building, but still nothing has been done. You can imagine the daunting task of trying to do something with it. First, you’d have to have loads and loads of available money and then, once you did something, you’d still have the upkeep because a little town can only support so many antique stores and B&Bs and art galleries.

We had our requisite Dairy Queen chocolate malt while in Comfort. It is right on I-10 (I guess it always has been, but I’ve never noticed before) and has the normal fast food on the highway.

Back on down the backroads through Sisterdale and Kendalia and Blanco toward home…  We stopped briefly in Blanco at a good fruit and vegetable stand that I’ve stopped at while passing through before. I sure wish there were a stand like that on my route to and from work. We got tomatoes and okra and potatoes and squash and Mark had to have some homemade peach ice cream. Good move because it was the really good kind of ice cream with the frozen bits of real peaches.

We’re within an hour of home at this point and then the adventure began! Story to come…

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