Friday, June 27, 2014

Hill Country Reunion

As many of you know, I like music. As I write this, Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys is playing. Perhaps you will hit the link below and listen as you read.

My father-in-law's family settled a chunk of the Republic of Texas way back in the day when land was $.13/ acre. They settled in the Hill Country, west of Austin on Missionary Ridge, close to Fischer Store.

Some of his cousins, twice or three times removed still live in the area. Our families got together to get to know each other. It is not hard to understand why they chose this part of the Republic. It is mighty beautiful here.

This year has been unusually gracious with rainfall after many years of serious drought.  The wild flowers are still everywhere you look.

Normally everything is brown by now. The ranchers are busy cutting hay. It is a good year for hay in the Hill Country.


It is a great year for the wildflowers.

We took a hike out to the Hamilton Pool

There was no swimming due to high levels of bacteria in the water. Lots of rain results in lots of cow shit being washed off of the ranch and into the waterways.

What a special place this must have been foreons. I bet some of Sam's kin came here when they arrived in the area.

I imagine little has changed except a ranger telling you not to swim or make contact with 
the water.

After a hike, one just might build up an appetite . We headed over to the Blanco Bowling Alley. By the way, in the Republic, they like to pretend that there is no relationship to Hispanic culture. Instead of calling it "BLAHN-CO" in the true Spanish pronunciation, they say "BLANK-OH".  The Blanco Bowling Alley is a mainstay in these parts. You can smoke and eat in one of the rooms. There is no place like that in Baltimore.

I had the chicken fried steak. It was textbook. I liked the corn flakes crust. It was the tastiest thing on the plater.

The next day we headed over to Jacob's Well. This is one of many places where the Edwards Aquifer comes out of the ground and bubbles to the surface. Cypress Creek begins here at Jacob's Well.

Some say it has no bottom. Eight scuba divers have died trying to find out. I suspect some local kids get seriously messed up each year misjudging the edges when they jump from high up.

A true oasis on the first day of summer. 

We then went out to the Pleasant Valley Cemetery. It is all also known as the Peal Cemetery, named after Beth's relatives.

The graves have seen better days.

I don't think the graves get many visitors. This land was donated by my father-in-law's family back in the day.  J.B. Peal, a Baptist minister, donated the five acres of land for a school, church and cemetery.

This is the building that serviced their community. It is now an antiques shop but once this was where one purchased everything one could not produce oneself.

We also went to Gruene. Now for you non-Texans, that is "green" not "gruene" as in the German pronunciation. Texans kind of like their German heritage. Gruene is a total tourist town. We ate lunch and went on up the road. 
The Bob Wills is about to end so I will sign off for this post.

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