Hello dear readers!
It is spring in Texas. That conjures up fields of brilliant wildflowers, endless blue skies, and amazing sunrises and sunsets. Well, let me share a weekend…48 hours in the Lone Star State during spring.
This past weekend, I began my second yearly spring journey into the hill country from the high plains region of the vast state in which I am blessed to have been born and raised and still live. It is my second, because on my first journey two weeks ago, we endured rain and cold. The bluebonnets were bursting forth, but one could not enjoy them when freezing. Therefore, I planned another trip to take in the Bluebonnet Festival in Burnet and to catch more warmth and beauty. Optimistic me.
Our journey began with me taping my FIRST ever video and my assistant, Emilie Rabitoy, placed it live on FB for all to see…much to my embarrassment. LOL Anyway, we began from Lubbock after a massive dust storm. We soon found sunny skies, and took that as a good omen. No trip to the hill country can begin unless we stop at Llano, Texas, and enjoy the best barbecue in that part of the state at Inman’s BBQ. While its neighbor may get all the hoopla and overcrowded waiting lines, Inman’s has the best food by far and we always stop in for more than a fair share of it.
I set out to take some backroads…which I LOVE to do…and we discovered some that were unbelievable for wildflower sightings. No camera can do them justice. I tried, but I admit failure. The sunset was amazing across the hills and valleys and we could not wait for the next day and the festival. If only we had known…
Fickle Mother Nature in Texas…our day began cloudy, and windy. We arrived early to find a good parking spot just off the main courthouse square. The booths were just opening…some with a wait and see attitude as the weather was sliding downhill. I managed to take a photo with the giant Bluebonnet sculpture before all heck broke loose. A police officer came by and basically told my husband and I to “run for it.” All people were being told to head for cover inside the community center a few blocks away. When we saw the black swirling clouds and rain boiling over the hills to the west, we didn’t ask questions. We made it as the first band of rain and high winds began to flood the streets, picking up some of the booths and tossing them around like matchsticks…their goods flung to the winds.
For two hours, we huddled with a couple hundred others inside the building…no windows but when peeking outside, it was a sight. We had high wind, hail, heavy rains and a tornado…making for a memorable festival! But I am not to be denied by a little weather. I managed to speed through the remaining vendors…once we were given the all clear… and came away with some hand-painted treasures and a bluebonnet afghan. The parade, which is usually a great one for a small-town festival, was minus a good number of entries who had cut their losses and high-tailed it for shelter or opted to be wise and not venture out at all on that morning. We ended up freezing with high winds up to 60 mph and temps dropping. Cutting our losses, we ended our day early and headed back for the warmth of the hotel. Basically, we had traveled a few hundred miles to see the inside of a hotel and not fields of wildflowers.
The next morning, we took some more backroads toward home…and the sun was shining gloriously, and a bright blue cloudless sky crowned the day. The temperature was warm and perfect. Figures.
Now, I am back home and longing to be back in the tall hills and beautiful lake country that is enjoying one of the most beautiful springs that Texas has seen in many years. I will share some of the photos I was able to take along the way and wish there had been more. I am once more at the computer, feverishly working on completing the third book in the Blood Brothers series, and trying not to think about the two Christmas novels that are knocking on the door of my brain and wanting me to write their stories next. LOL Take a number…
Until next time, enjoy spring wherever you may be!