We love hanging out with Jim’s cousin Warren and his wife Judy. They are family who are also very good friends, often an unlikely combination. They love to laugh and have a good time and we always sink back into a deep and comfortable friendship and conversation with them.
We had looked in our Elks book but the lodge in New Braunfels was not listed as having RV parking. Judy got on the phone and got the OK from the Knights of Columbus to park there, then she called the Elks too and they said “Come on over.” So we did.
Once again I have to sing the praises of being Elks. The people at the lodge are friendly and welcoming and we always have a safe and quiet place to park. New Braunfels was no exception and the lodge is right in the heart of downtown. We could walk to anything!
They showed us where we should park because they have deer that visit the grassy area in the lot. Every day. They had 15 amp electric so we plugged in and took the cats for a walk. While they were out the deer friends showed up. One deer was very curious about Carmella and approached her hesitantly, snorting and stomping her hoof repeatedly. She got about ten feet away from the cat before she turned tail and ran off. Then we started catching up with Judy and Warren.
Last year we met up with them in Austin in their motorhome. This year they had accomplished the very formidable task of selling their house and alot of their stuff and moved into a new house in New Braunfels, Texas. They also have two new puppies, Kash and Kole, who are littermates and described as a schnauzer mix. They look a little like schnauzers but they have long legs and Kash has very large and expressive ears. They are very cute and much fun. Somebody abandoned them and the mom in a field probably when they discovered they weren’t full Schnauzers. How can people do that? They sure got lucky when they ended up with these guys. Warren said, “How could we not take them in?”
And they are immortalized on the patio.
They brought us one of their cars to use (!) and we drove to their house to watch the first game of the World Series. Judy fixed up a tray of snacks that would feed an army! We settled in with margaritas and puppies to watch the game. Go Astros!
The next day we went to breakfast at Union Station Diner. The biscuits and gravy were really good and I was stuffed all day. We drove to nearby Gruene (pronounced Green) and poked around the historic downtown before eating out for the second time in a day at Cantina Del Rio. This place got good reviews on Yelp and we arrived for Happy Hour. Of course. I ordered shrimp tacos that were really good but everybody else got fajitas. The meat was good but that was all there was, no peppers or onions steaming up the plate. I think they forgot. Get the shrimp tacos.
There was free live music in Gruene Hall, where George Strait got his start, and we listened awhile after cruising the local tourist shops. LOTS of “good stuff!” Then we headed back to their house for Game 2 of the Series.
Our last evening there we went to the Gristmill in Gruene after finding out the patio was closed at McAdoos. We ate outside and had a good dinner. Afterward we went back and played with puppies, drank wine and watched football. We drove their car back to the house and got an Uber for the ride back to the bus. When we got in the car he asked where to (although they already know) and when we told him The Elks he said “the bus, right?” Even though we were tucked behind the building he knew it was there. His name was John and the pic of him in front of the bus shows why you get Uber in the first place! (I blame my phone…)
What a great visit we had! Judy and Warren are warm and wonderful and fun. By the second night they said, “You know where everything is; make yourselves at home. This was the last round of friend visits this season. And a good time to stop eating out for a while! We certainly ended the season on a high note with these guys and look forward to seeing them in the spring. The puppies will be all grown up by then. They are on their first extended road trip to North Carolina to celebrate Judy’s grand daughter’s first birthday. I bet Kash and Kole will have a great time with the kids.
After we left New Braunfels, we stayed four nights at Choke Canyon State Park. I had a work project I needed to finish up and we had a fine campsite with large sites, few other visitors and more deer friends!
I got my project finished and turned over 3700 miles on my bike while we were there. I guess I won’t make 4000 this season. That’s OK; I feel fortunate we got to ride as much as we did. I think we got in about 800-900 miles this season. Shoulda kept track. I know I turned over 3000 in Raleigh, North Carolina.
We will spend the day reprovisioning, fueling up the bus and traveling to our winter spot in the Rio Grande Valley. I’ve been keeping track of where we stayed every stop these past six and a half months and will put together a wrap-up soon.
It has been a great season. We are truly blessed and thankful.