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Longhorns and Javelinas
from Velora

Hello Dear Friends and Family,

After a delay in communication and some boring journal entries, I decided to just write. It has been since Nov that we hit the road. We stayed in FL until after the holidays and Chuck traded in for a new, just slightly bigger RV. A foot longer, wider, taller, makes a HUGE difference in the quality of life for full timing. But we are a class C coach and not nearly as big or small as everyone else we see in the campgrounds. It is an entire life and slice of Americana that I never knew before. It still is the spirit that settled this country. But now we do it with cell phones, sat. tv, WI-FI, a traveling condo, and all the comforts of home. What a difference 150 years make.

We went right to TX from FL. Canyon Lake, in the hill country between Austin and San Antonio was our first big stop. The cities are everthing they claim to be. Austin is the capital with museums, UT, great resturants, clubs and music, and lots of organic markets. San Antonio has the Alamo and River Walk-- which is really an incredible beautification project which drawls the city together in the maze of the river, shopping and resturants, and the art projects and fountains in the entries/exits from the city streets.

Canyon Lake is the result of damming the Guadalope River for a reservoir. It provides a recreational area for boating and a wildife haven. The deer are hand fed at the parks and are tame, much to the chagrin of the dogs. They just walk between the RVs and the girls went crazy seeing them out the windows and on walks. We stayed at two incredible campsites. The Corp of Engineers and the Air Force had parks that were like resorts. Boat rentals, cabins, swimming areas, and no one there but us and a few people. I then got sick again and sleep for days. We then left for western TX.

Fort Davis is up on a mesa whcih is 2 miles above sea level. It was a calvary station built to devend the overland mail route from "indians and bandits." One thing about all these small towns in TX, not much has changed in the last 150 yrs. They are very quaint and charming. Now it is just gift shops and resturants that occupy the buildlings. It still looks like the old west (and just as dusty), but no suburban sprawl. The state park we stayed at was in the mountains above, with incredibly beautiful rock outcroppings. No phone or cell service though. So if you send an email or call, please remember it could take days for us to get cell/email service.

After going to the only doc in town and getting shots for my bronchitis, we traveled 26 miles to Alpine (which is where the train station is) to get my prescription filled (pop 5763). I was glad that is was only that far. It was TX independence day and we saw a parade with one float, the 12 veterans, and all the trucks in town.

We got to go to McDonald Observatory (with the UT). After the day program, we went to the Star Party that night. At a wind chill of 17 F, we Floridians with no winter coats, wore every bit of sweat shirts, jackets and gear we brought. It was a challenge for me at 7000 ft to climb the hill for the night program with not being able to breath, thinner air, and freezing. But it was spectacular! We got to see Saturn and star clusters in the telescopes. Just suck it up and love it!

On the wildlife side, I have seen roadrunners, a myriad of birdlife, a Texas cougar, javelinas (wild pigs), jackrabbits, coyote, and we won't even count the deer. I almost forgot the Marfa Mystery Lights. There are lights ouside of Marfa that have been appearing to white people since 1880's. They are orbs of light that appear, move around, change colors, muliply, disappear, etc. They have been studied, but no one has been able to define them. We did see them and have video. I have no idea, except an anomoly of nature. Or aliens, angels, etc. They were captivating.

Oh, one more thing. Besides the unknown fact of the area being settled by Germans, there are great winerys. Before prohobiton, Texas was the largest wine producing state, having similar soils as France. So besides cattle, there in wine production, pecan orchardes, and hibiscus and tomato farms. We have been in the Chihuahan Mt range, one of nine in Tx. Yes, Texas has mountains. The end of the Rockies, and gorgeous. NM is next.

Love to all,
Velora Peacock

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