The Journey is the Destination
While we are very happy to have left East Texas, Rene and I have been enjoying some rather leisurely meanderings as we head north for the summer before our workamping job starts consuming all our time at Vickers Ranch. Read on for details, with lots of fun photos, and jump ahead if you don’t care for cussing.
Slow the F down, people!
We were working our way through the beautiful back roads of the Texas Hill country the other day, traveling the speed limit and enjoying the scenery. A number of cars passed us, many of them illegally and dangerously—crossing the double yellow, or cutting back in front of us quickly due to oncoming traffic. This type of shit bugs me, but I normally just laugh it off. It was a beautiful Sunday morning though, and it kept happening.
I started feeling sorry for these poor souls living such hurried lives. Then it happened again, multiple cars sped past us on the winding two-lane byway. Less than a minute later, we crested a hill to come upon what I thought was some local festival or special event. Cars were stopped along both sides of the road, and people were crossing, rather quickly. I then noticed one of those cars was upside down, and recognized a couple others that were rather crunched.
Just seconds earlier, these same drivers who were in such a hurry to pass everyone else were involved in—and had likely caused—a very serious accident. From the looks of things, there were clearly fatalities. (After tuning in to local radio news the next day, we discovered that fortunately nobody was killed.)
So slow the fuck down people. Not only does your life depend upon it, but your speed and awareness affect the lives of everyone else on the road.
And now back to our regular programming…
Enjoying the Ride
I first started feeling like we had found our groove again, when we found Nonnie’s Bakery in Caldwell, Texas. We had been to The Kolache Capital Bake Shop in Caldwell a few years ago, and I was looking forward to another tasty treat, but recent Yelp reviews suggest The Bake Shop has lost its touch, and there is a new best bakery in town. We tried Nonnie’s, and the reviews are right!
That’s when we discovered we were on The Kolache Trail, and that La Grange, Texas was not too far out of our way. Ever since I heard the Dale Watson song years ago, I always wanted to stop at that Little Bitty Truck Stop in La Grange. A quick search led us to Weikel’s Bakery, sort of a mini Buc-ee’s in its own right. And yes…
You get a damn good cup of coffee and a mighty, mighty fine kolache…
I finally got that mighty fine kolache, and the Kolache Trail eventually led us back to Naeglin’s in New Braunfels—the oldest bakery in Texas.
Our trip north hasn’t been just about filling up on sweets though. Landa RV Park is one of our favorite Hill Country destinations. Once again, we enjoyed floating down the Comal and watching Wyatt swim.
Entertainment was what this segment of our journey was all about. That, and the celebration of our 19th wedding anniversary.
The week started with our almost annual pilgrimage to Luckenbach, Texas.
While we have seen Ray Wylie Hubbard in the Hill Country a number of times, we fulfilled a long time dream I’ve had to see him play in the Luckenbach Dance Hall.
While I had hoped to give Ray a small token of appreciation for all the good times and music we have enjoyed, I did have the honor of meeting Mother Hubbard. I didn’t want to be that crazy fan stalking the band after the show. So when I noticed Judy heading backstage, I flagged her down and handed her a package with these tags Rene helped me make for all the Hubbards. She asked, “It’s not weed is it?” Anyone who has Read Ray Wylie Hubbard’s memoir will understand how hilarious that is.
If that wasn’t enough, the very next day we headed to Roscoe, Texas to catch the Mavericks at the Lumberyard. This is another hidden treasure that we’ve added to our watch list for seeing bands at favorite music venues in Texas. We were happy to discover the opening act, Two Tons Of Steel. While the dance floor filled up with two-steppers when they sang Waltz Across Texas, it cleared out and left us alone bouncing around to the twangiest version of I’m Sedated that I have ever heard—and the most cowpunk rendition of Deep in The Heart of Texas.
As the sun went down, Rene’s dream came true. She swooned as Raul Malo crooned just few feet away, and we both bopped to another rockin’ show by The Mavericks. Happy anniversary baby.
Between Ray Wylie Hubbard and Eddie Perez, I had just about overdosed on cool.
Sadly, it was time to leave Texas. But not before a stop at Balmorhea State Park, another destination that has been on our must see list for a long time. We finally got to swim with the fishies in the crystal clear water of one of the world’s largest spring-fed pools. Next stop: Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.
We wrapped up our anniversary week with a return to Riverbend. This was one of our very first workamping jobs, over eight years ago. We enjoyed catching up with Jake, and his mom. But I still can’t believe this is the same place! With four new beautiful private pools, three new big public pools, beautiful landscaping, I highly recommend Riverbend Hot Springs for anyone who enjoys a good soak. They’re still looking for workampers too, and you don’t have to clean the pools and strip linens anymore!
The icing on the cake, was another stop at Pie-o-neer Pies.
While we did enjoy pie—lots of pie—this visit was a business trip as I sat down for a couple training sessions with The Pie Lady of Pie Town to show her around behind the scenes of the new Pie-0-neer online store I built.
Will work for pie…
The road goes on forever, but the party never ends.
Out travels this season have taken us to the bottom of Death Valley, down to Big Bend, and deep in the heart of Texas.
Yes, we work full-time and travel full-time. But that doesn’t mean we don’t take our time to slow down and enjoy the journey.
We’re back in the mountains now, enjoying some quiet time to get some more work done before the workamping begins…off the grid, and online thanks to our RVDataSat 840 satellite internet.