Monday, October 31, 2005

"Texas-Size Fun"-Part One

"Where are ya'll?" I shouted into the cell phone to Scott. "We're in a cab at the Coffeeshop at the Town Square in New Braunfels," he replied. "Where are ya'll?" "We're on 46 East," I said. I could hear him asking the cabbie which way we needed to go-I didn't hear the exact words but got the impression that Scott (from South Carolina and having never been to New Braunfels before), was better equipped to direct us than than his "professional driver." During the colloquy, I could hear Cristina muttering something sarcastic and could almost see her rolling her eyes at the inexplicable futility of a cabbie being "directionally challenged." After several minutes it was-"right on Common, left on Union, go to the square and we'll be next to the coffeshop." So it was right on Common, left on Union for us which somehow put us at a dead end near a bunch of shotgun houses. I called back to report the lack of success. I could hear the cabbies voice asking, "what are you near," and I told Scott we had just passed a well-marked hospital. "Stay there, we'll come and get you, we're just up the street-what kind of van are ya'll in?" "I had forgotten the color during the short trip from the San Antonio Airport and I got several different replies from the others in our van, so I threw it back on them-"what color cab are ya'll in?" "It's a red van," he said. Randall pulled right beside the hospital and we waited-I got out to see if I could flag them down when they rolling by. Five minutes-no cab. I told Randall that maybe we should go to the main parking lot to see if they were there so we squealed around and went to the ER entrance. While we were trying to position our ride to be able to see anything coming down the street, Vin spotted a red van with a cab thing on top whizzing down and side street-"follow that van," she shouted and we took off at about 60 MPH to catch up with it several blocks away. We blew the horn, the cab stopped. Scott paid the fare while Christina got out shaking her head in disgust-introductions and hugs exchanged, we were all in our van back to the Town Square where we were supposed to meet in the first place. "That woman (cab driver) was 'on something,'" Christina insisted. Over some 20-ounce Shiner Bock drafts and some lunch, they told us about the the cabbie from hell that drove them from the airport to the hotel the night before-a male of "room temperature IQ," who obsessively referred to his map (not a good sign for any cabbie), who missed their exit by several miles and whom Christina dismissively referred to "not right." It was 3:00 P.M. CDT and we were finally here-a plan had come together!

What were seven North and South Carolinians doing driving around New Braunfels, Texas in a rental van on a fall Friday afternoon? It was part pilgramage, part concert, part chance to spend the weekend with a cadre of fun-loving friends, part chance to put faces with names of some blog friends living in the area, part chance put on the boots and the wranglers and immerse ourselves in the Texas experience-the food, the beer, the attitude and the culture. Texans are fiercely proud of their huge state and rightly so-the variety of cultures, the food, the music and its vast, scenic beauty, draws you in and makes you want to be a part of it-even today, I don't think it would have a problem existing and thriving as an independent Republic, as it once was and once did. Jeans, boots, cowboy hats and belts were scarfed up by those that didn't already have them and by the time we got on the plane heading back east, we were all unofficial, but honorary Texans! (Continued tommorrow).


Blogger Dash said...

Shoulda called a local for directions.

I've been so busy, I haven't had a chance to post about your visit... but I will.

It was great meeting you and your crew from Carolina. You're a fun loving group and are definitely honorary Texans. I'm glad you had a good trip.

5:49 PM  
Anonymous Collin said...

Very helpful info, much thanks for your post.

11:57 AM  

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