Burns Branch, Natchez Trace

You know how I love the Trace, so when Nate asked if we wanted to join him for a hike on the Trace, I was in! We left early this morning to beat the heat. There was a debate six miles or two and a half miles. Guess which won out! Yep the short one. I do not remember June being this humid last year. Yesterday it was 94 degrees with high humidity but today was a little cooler, but still humid. By the end of the hike we were dripping sweat…. At least I was!!

There was so much beauty in this short hike. It is truly amazing to see the variety of mushroom/fungi. I am not a biologist, but I truly enjoyed the different structures and colors
















The eyes of the forest are watching!!


Amazing what you see!

Blow out!

OOOPS! Spoke to soon. Not home yet! Ever wonder what it feels like to have a blow out? We were about 100 miles from home when our right front tire blew! Paul had asked if I wanted to drive, and I briefly considered it and said no. I am so thankful I was not at the wheel when this happened! Paul was able to control it and pull over without a problem (for me anyway!)

Nothing to do but wait!


Four hours after it happened we were on our way. Of course we needed to get a recharge and get a smile on our face, so what better way than to stop and get hugs and kisses from a granddaughter!!

So, now we really are home, and the rig is in storage until we can get a new diesel tank (yes it started leaking again), air conditioning and generator checked, and 4 more tires at $500+ each!!

Homeward Bound

Even when you are retired, there comes a time when you need to leave the road and go home. We camped in some beautiful sites.

Want to see how bad that tire was? No wonder Paul was worried! I am just thankful all of them are not this bad! The metal was showing like this all around the tire.

I think we are both tired of looking and site seeing, so we did not stop to take any sites in on our way home. It was tempting. We could have gone on a “Billgrimage” , and seen all things Clinton in Arkansas. We could spend another week! But I think once you know you are going home, you just want to make tracks. Wonder what the full timers do? They must relax in between sites and probably do not have the schedule of site seeing I impose upon us! (Just ask any of our kids! I would even wear them out!)

We stayed the night in a rest stop in Arkansas, leaving about 5:30 in the morning. Rest stops in Dallas and Arkansas are nice because you can spend the night. A little noisy, but saves $ and time looking for a spot just to park and sleep.

As we entered Memphis there were clouds and

the sun was just coming up

We’re Home 🙂

Family of God

I think I have said it before, but I am saying it again. one of the great things about travel is the fellowship you can have anywhere with other Christians. This morning we were planning on attending the service here at the camp. The sign had 8:45 and 9:45 so we chose to go at 9:45. There was a foyer and we could hear the service. We thought we were early. We waited a while then left and found out that it is only at 8:45. So we missed it. We had seen a small church on the highway not far away so we went there. Sunday school started at 10. As we approached the door they were singing, so we went in and sat down. After the song everyone stood up, so we thought we had missed this one, too, and had got in on the last of it! Not so. I was ushered out to the ladies SS class and Paul to the men’s. Our table was set for tea or coffee. Poor Paul, no coffee for the men. Then we stayed for worship service. From the pulpit, we were told we must be good people since we drove a jeep. (Some folks appreciate jeeps, air conditioned or not!) I think all of the 14 other people greeted us and were so excited to have us join them. We were the youngest there, other than the pastor and his wife. What a sweet spirit this congregation had!
Lazy afternoon. Paul decided to look into getting at least one tire tomorrow. The metal is showing through on one and is worse than he realized. We checked near where we were parked before, and they could order them but not install them. What good is that? So we may stick around so we can get a tire before moving on.

Dallas

This is my 70th blog!! I did not think I would do this for this long, but I have enjoyed it!
After me whining (yeah right), Paul decided he felt like going into Dallas today.
So I drove, driving Paul crazy, trying to avoid the obstacles in the road. Along this country road, the shoulder was wide enough to have a second lane, and if a vehicle was going slow, they just moved over onto this lane!


Traffic in Dallas, though, was not as accommodating! But we made it safely!
We saw the first house in Dallas;

The 6th courthouse built, named “Old Red”;

Dealy Park (named for the first settler who owned the little log cabin above);


the JFK memorial (design chosen by Jackie, but she never came to see it completed);


the 6th floor museum in the old book depository that houses memorabilia and information about the assassination of JFK, from where oswald allegedly shot JFK;

There is an X in the middle lane a little to the left of the middle of the photo to mark the exact location of the 2nd shot. The first is further up the street to the right of the picture.
the infamous grassy knoll;

Paul drove back to our campsite and we spent the rest of the day relaxing, reading and enjoying our view.

Bruceville

These pictures are for you, Bruce!

And what we went through to get it!
We turned off the highway and tried to find the town, but it turned into a narrow street with low branches and low wires.

Seriously, this was close for the RV. So we did not look further for the town.
Paul was not happy.

But you are worth it!

Then we saw the caterpiller. This one is for you John L.

We traveled a little further today than yesterday, which was pretty easy to do since we only traveled 124 miles yesterday! In fact we doubled our distance. We decided to stay a couple of days in the Dallas area so we could check Dallas out. Our only experience with Dallas up to now is just driving through, or transferring planes at the airport. Except now that we are at our campsite, we find out it is 1 1/2 to 2 hours away depending on traffic! Paul is ready to relax all day tomorrow, so we will most likely wait to explore Dallas!
I think he just wants to enjoy this campsite.

Unless he falls off the fence!

Austin Revisited

On the fence: Should we go home, or should we just continue driving?

We left Lake Medina about 8:00 this morning, after hugs and pictures, right behind Barb and John!

Since we took the longer route here, we decided to go back the shorter route through Dallas and Highway 30 just to be different. We will probably still take four days to get home! This gives us an opportunity to revisit Austin and see the Whole Foods Store, which is the flagship store and headquarters

Can you believe this? 18 bins of different salts and peppers!!

and the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas. No picture taking allowed, but these links have good pictures! This museum has, on permanent display, one of five Gutenberg Bibles in the states, one of 48 existing in the world. It is the first complete book printed with moveable metal type, Prior to 1454, books were either copied by hand or printed from engraved wooden blocks. It could take months or even years to complete. Also on permanent display is the “First photograph”. Taken by a frenchman who experimented with photography around 1816, this photo was taken in 1826 or 1827 from a window. He set up the pewter plate with bitumen of Judea, a petroleum derivative, and left it exposed for eight hours. He removed the plate and washed it with a mixture of white petroleum and oil of lavender. it produced the image which he called helio-graphy or sun-drawing. It was really interesting.
In addition to the permanent exhibits, the center had two traveling displays we found very interesting. The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam in several different versions, shapes and sizes, including miniatures, including the smallest. You could not read it even with magnifying glass. Several other antique books were displayed. Read the news article about one of these books from the New York Times April 21, 1912.
A broad variety of black and white photographs displayed honored Frit Henle’s 100th birthday. His art ranged significantly from images of 1930s and 1940s around the world, innovative nudes, famous personalities to being a major contributor to such magazines as LIFE, Harper’s Bazaar, Popular Photography and U.S. Camera. He was known as “the last of the classical freelance photographers.

The state campground we stopped at is just south of Austin, at McKinney Falls State Park. After visiting Austin, we explored the park to see the falls. Click above to actually see the water falling. It has been drought time in Texas right now, so there is not enough water for the falls to even be present. It reminded me of CA with very little water. But the contrast of rock versus water and greenery was fabulous viewing.
Upper falls
The water should be coming over this rock formation, as in the picture on the link.

but it is only a trickle

you can barely see it!

Lower falls
This is where the water should be coming over

Just puddles, no falling water


Like today, we probably need to go at least 124 miles tomorrow. Our intention really is to go home. Unless of course, Paul falls off the fence!

Natural Bridge Caverns

Tuesday we visited the Natural Bridge Caverns, just northeast of San Antonio. The opening is to the lower left of this picture.
They were discovered in the early 1960’s. When you consider how many caverns are around the United States, it makes you wonder how many more are waiting to be found!



On the way home, we stopped in Boerne to do some antiquing.
Paul washed the windshield again today, so we had a huge thunder storm last night! It almost felt like an earthquake! It lasted a long while, complete with bright lightening and thunder overhead and the road becoming like a river.
Today is a stay at home, getting ready to travel day.

Austin


What can I say.
A lot of the museums are closed on Monday. It was further than we thought it would be. So to get an overview in a short period of time we took the 90 minute tour. These pictures were from the inside of a van, so aren’t as good or up close as I would like.
The cemetery included a memorial to those from Texas killed on 9/11, featuring two girder beams from the World Trade Center towers.
The city still has the old moonlight towers, a lighting system began in 1895. There are 17 of the original 31 remain. They each consist of a cluster of six carbon arc lamps (now mercury vapor) that casts a glow over a radius of 3,000 feet This is the only U.S. city with a tower system still intact.

The shorter old fancy building in front of the sky scrapers is the oldest hotel in Texas

(As a side comment, in Texas, everything has a claim to being the largest, only, or best in the world, state, county, city).
We also toured the inside of the capitol building, and that gave us an added insight into the history of Texas. Like all Capitol buildings we have seen, it was beautiful and had some great architectural design.

Since we will be going through Austin again on the way home, I am hoping to stop and visit the Whole Foods headquarters there. I have been told there is nothing like it.