6/9/2021 to Texas City, Galveston, Texas on to – lafayette, Louisiana

We arrived late on 6/8 and just went to bed. On the way down here there was a big sign “It’s Huricane Season Be Prepared”. Scared the hell out of me.

On the 9th Rick went to Discount Tire which is who we purchased these tires from and were put on by their reps in New York State a couple years ago. I downloaded pictures and started the last blog. We drove into Texas City where Rick had left the rim. the spare was on and today they got the new tire. put it on the rim and we will have it mounted next week on our way to Louisiana. We had lunch today at Schlotzsky’s, we wanted to try this place last time we were in Texas so we did. They make good sandwiches.

Went into Galveston and looked around. Looked all along Seawall Drive and there are wonderful places to eat, the Pleasure Pier and a lot on Seawall Drive, so we’re gonna check that out and see what we see.

We went into Galveston, and drove along Seawall Boulevard , stores, restaurants and hotels, on the other side is Beach and a few piers usually with stores. We were lucky enough to get a place that was free parking. We went to lunch at Miller’s, it has been in business since 1976 and is located at 18924 Seawell Blvd. I had Shrimp and Grits (I’m turning into a Southern Gal (wannabe) and a side of Mushrooms, Rick had Chicken Fried Steak and Wow was it big. Good food. We found another parking spot (luckly free) sat on a bench and took pictures. The Gulf is brown because the sand is so fine that the waves pick it up and you see it in the water, beyond that the ocean/gulf is blue. All the Rivers, Streams, Bayous, whatever is brown with sand or silt. Not very pretty. Sand must get to places you never want sand.

This was all on the “Pleasure Pier”
it costs $15 to spend all day on the pier that does not include rides.

I know curiosity killed the cat, but I was wondering exactly what Juneteenth celebrated. I had never heard of it until last year and knew it was a date that was celebrated by Black Americans. So I looked it up and this is what wickapedia says : Juneteenth (a portmanteau of June and nineteenth) – also known as Freedom Day,[3]Jubilee Day,[4] Liberation Day,[5] and Emancipation Day – is a holiday celebrating the emancipation of those who had been enslaved in the United States. Originating in Galveston, Texas, it is now celebrated annually on June 19 throughout the United States, with increasing official recognition. It is commemorated on the anniversary date of the June 19, 1865, announcement of General Order No. 3 by Union Army general Gordon Granger, proclaiming freedom from slavery in Texas.

President Abraham Lincoln‘s Emancipation Proclamation had officially outlawed slavery in Texas and the other states in rebellion against the Union almost two and a half years earlier. Enforcement of the Proclamation generally relied on the advance of Union troops. Texas, as the most remote of the slave states, had a low presence of Union troops as the American Civil War ended; thus enforcement there had been slow and inconsistent before Granger’s announcement.[7] Although Juneteenth generally celebrates the end of slavery in the United States, it was still legal and practiced in two Union border states (Delaware and Kentucky) until later that year, when ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution abolished chattel slavery nationwide in December. Additionally, Indian Territories that had sided with the Confederacy, namely the Choctaw, did not release those enslaved until 1866.

Then I looked up what portmanteau meant and this is what the Oxford dictionary said: It is a French “word that means: *a word blending the sounds and combining the meanings of two others, for example motel (from ‘motor’ and ‘hotel’) or brunch (from ‘breakfast’ and ‘lunch’).”podcast is a portmanteau, a made-up word coined from a combination of the words iPod and broadcast”

Oh, how this blog makes me work.

Today I looked up the Grackles on the Cornell Ornithology website and found that the Grackle we have been seeing is the Great-Tailed Grackle. I saw several Cardinals flying across the street in front of me from tree to bush and back. The picture shows a little black on its face and the female has a small amount of red near the tail.

We are going on to Louisiana on Tuesday. Watching the Accuweather (Mark Mancuso is boring, probably a nice man but need to know) they are talking about hurricanes and being prepared, weather means more now. They were talking about the heat in Southern California, San Diego doesn’t look bad we are spoiled,.

Aransas Pass Texas 6/1/2021 to 6/8

We left So. Padre Island in the rain, had to go almost to Brownsville, before we went north/east to Aransas Pass. Interesting trip went thru Combs, Port Mansfield, Kingsville and wondered what their crops were. Saw a little corn which we knew and then a couple we didn’t know. So I went to work on the internet, and found: ” While the primary crops of Texas are cotton, corn, feed grains (sorghum, milo, etc.), rice and wheat, there is an abundance of other crops, too. From peanuts, to sunflowers to sugarcane and more.” We saw 4 large blue trash barrels before the Border Patrol check point with signs on them that said “AGUA”, assuming there is water in them, so we figured that was a path that was taken by those that walked across the border it is hot so water is a welcome for sure.

This whole coast is “The Padre Island National Seashore” from South Padre Island to see below:

While looking at the map saw the Aransas Wildlife Refuge, we drove up there about 1 1/2 hours from here, read the reviews and there are lotsa birds, javelin, deer, alligators, snakes and more. We will probably go there Monday 6/7. We went and saw nothing we hadn’t seen before, the only thing we the most of was lotsa water.

Seagull minding his own business
Seagull taking off to mind someone else’s business

6/3 we went for a drive, took the car Ferry and went to Mustang Beach. There are no Mustangs there, got some shells, they are very thin, the beach is very flat and the surf is very small, so it is a nice place to swim, we are 190 miles east of So. Padre Island. The Gulf is not the same wherever you go.

The vendors were the same as South Padre, in town it seemed like the masks were not universally worn nor required to enter. We had lunch at the Tortuga Restaurant, we both had burgers, mine was w/candied bacon, Rick with grilled onions and marmalade, very good. Interesting beach town, then took ferry back and came back to CWI RV Park. This is a Fishing RV Park, so a lot of the people who stay here are locals who leave their RV’s here as their weekend retreat or summer home. Saw lotsa boats, including fan boats, there are a lot of shallow places so even boats with large engines appear to have short shafts. This RV Park is built at an old airport, and we drive down the Taxi strip turn and the RVs are parked in a long line, patios at each spot

6/6 Ricks Birthday, we went for a short ride to check out what’s around us, Next weekend they are having a Shrimpfest of course we will miss it. We are too early or late for whatever festivities are going on anywhere. Oh well.

6/7 we went to the Aransas Wildlife Refuge, I read all the reviews and they are wonderful. The following pictures we took there. We did not see most of the animals advertised, but we saw a few. I saw 2 white Ibis flying and a cardinal. that I did not get pictures of, the rest are below.


We knew it had rained a lot because when we made the reservation the lady said it had. There was water on the sides of every road we were on, even coming here. One person said he had a friend who had planted corn three times. Each time it rained and ruined the crop so he gave it up ’til next year. We saw a lot of crops, hopefully some survive. We also notices that the palm trees looked pretty bad. Evidently it had been so hot that it almost killed or did kill the palms. The native plants looked healthy, the palms all had yellow or brown fronds. The Palms are starting to come back (those still alive) things will look a lot different then.

Yesterday 6/8 we drove from Aransas Pass to San Leon Texas, it is near Galveston, Tx. We had a FLAT SHREDDED TIRE on the 5th wheel, so we spent all day waiting to get it fixed. I even started counting the train cars as they went by. Nobody came or called from Good Sam. AAA didn’t get back to us, but they finally called a sheriff who came by, AAA had called them (we found out later they could not reach us) and they came by. Several people came by and stopped to see if we needed help. Even a Farm hand born & raised in Texas stopped to ask if we needed help. We were given names, addresses and phone numbers of people who wanted to help and to call them if we needed to.

The really bad thing is….it was hard to call out and no calls came in. We did get 1 text, but not from anyone who could help. We finally called a Truck Tire Place in El Campo, Tx. and we got the tire changed and we needed a Spring Shackle Bolt (whatever that is..) so Rick went with him to Napa Auto Parts and got the bolt we needed and the tire guy helped put it on, but AAA nor Good Sam had helped. Got here about 7pm, had peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for dinner and went to bed.

5/22 to 5/31 2021

5/26. It is really easy to go between Port Isabel and South Padre Island. The Island is a destination, we were talking to the camper next door and he used to come every weekend and have a hotel room for $40 a night, now they run about $450 a night, so he got the trailer and stays here now. One day we just drove around and took pictures of the sand sculptures and turtles, and places we had not been before and you realize this place is a great place to visit, and there are things to see and do all over the place. Port Isabel has painted dolphins everywhere, South Padre Island has painted turtles everywhere. The weather is interesting, and always warm and humid (at least while we were here) and some days are sunny, cloudy, rainy, windy and calm all in one day.

5/27 We went to the Beach again, it is soooooo close and we can drive on it and just relax. I always thought snipe were a joke, evidently not.

5/28 Went to the Bird Sanctuary again, took more pictures

5/29 We had a thunder/lightening storm, again. The thunder was really loud and lightening was everywhere it was very scary, but exciting. Watched a lot of people come back from the beach and a lot of cars left the other beach.
After the storm stopped, people went back to the beach. We see the fireworks every weekend, they are shot off the Pier near Claytons behind The Courtyard Marriott, (we thought it was from Claytons, but is put on by the Marriott) Last night was the best yet. We had wonderful fireworks at night again from the Marriott, and later we got to watch another whole fireworks demonstration about 4 miles away and it lasted longer and was better than any we had seen before.

Rick watches what goes on at Boca Chica Space Port, they have it live on the internet, as well as the NASA spaceport at Cape Canaveral Florida. anyone can watch it happening as it happens. We were able to drive there and were within 100 yards of the spaceship we saw launched and landed earlier. Watching it was an experience never to be forgotten.

Thinking back on what we experienced here, and I realized that I did not even mention some of the wonderful things we experienced here. At the Bird Sanctuary a snake came out of a shaded area that had water and the Grackles saw it and started grabbing it by the tail, the snake would turn around and the birds would let go and jump back the snake kept going.. We watched this go on until the snake disappeared. The Grackles even flew up into the trees looking down trying to spot the snake, never saw it again.

At the beach, in fact at every beach there are alot of people and the most beautiful umbrella, there are many large stores that sell beach toys, floats and beachwear. Most shells we find have holes in them so there must be numerous snail out there.

We have a resident chipmunk that has been around since we moved to this spot, it freezes whenever someone walks by, then scouts around for food. It has a hole there that it goes into to hide.

The mosquitos here are very vicious. they sick blood like their relatives but they are bigger, black and their bite/sting lasts longer, swells more and itches for days.

On the Queen Isabel Bridge, there was a pelican flying even with us, now we know why there is a watch for pelican sign. Kites are a big thing here, at the other end is a kid, surfer or skier.

On to Corpus Cristi…………

Memorial Day

If you are reading this on Monday, Happy Memorial Day. Just a reminder of what this day is for/about/in honor of etc.

Arlington Cemetery STOCK PHOTO

Thank You!

From my Ex-sister-in-law, copied from her post on facebook🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸Monday will be the most expensive holiday on the calendar. Every hot dog, every burger, every spin around the lake, or drink with friends and family…is a debt…purchased by others. This is not about all who’ve served…that day comes in the fall. This one is in honor of those who paid in life and blood; whose moms never saw them again, whose dads wept in private, whose wives raised kids alone, and whose kids only remembered them from pictures. This isn’t simply a day off. This is a day to remember – that others paid for every free breath you ever get to take. Freedom. 🇺🇸🇺🇸

5/13/2021 thru 5/21/2021

It is really windy here, and sometimes rainy so all we do is get out and run around some, generally speaking there is not much to say. Whenever we go out, I take pictures, and I have taken many pictures, some with information attached, some not. We have a lot of Grackles here, and we thought because there were so many everywhere it must be the state Bird, I looked it up and the state bird is the Mockingbird, have yet to see one.

Had another outing to the bird sanctuary and one to the beach. We saw a lot of Jeeps and a lot of flags and many said “Go Topless” and others that said “O’Hana” and some Texas State and USA flags. Didn’t know until later that Go Topless is a jeep rally and in Texas people like flags. O’Hana means family and the jeep rally is called the *O’Hana Go Topless” rally. We see flowers and Great Blue Herons everywhere.

5/19 Another Thunder Storm , I am watching pelicans flying south. looks like they are going out to sea, humm do they know something we don’t? They did, we had a terrible storm yesterday. Lotsa lightening, thunder, rain. We sat out in the truck for a while, just so we could experience it.

We finally came back into the RV, and because the wind was so bad, 47 mph, we pulled in all the pop-outs and put the antenna down and called it a day.

Storm, hand onto your hats!

Today 5/20 we are going to Turtle Inc. then lunch.

Went to Sea Turtle Inc. started by Ilia Loetswcher in 1977 it is non-profit entity. The smallest of the Sea Turtles the Ridley is often found on the Padre Islands where they nest and because the bay is very shallow many Ridley Sea Turtles are seen in the bay.

Then we went to Josephines for lunch I had Grits and shrimp with spinach, bacon and cheese. Rick had the Cubano. We both really liked what we got. Josephines is only open for breakfast the lunch.

5/21 we went to the beach again. and took more pictures.

Surfs up
Ended each Friday and Saturday night with fireworks

This town/City has painted turtles and Sand Carvings everywhere, will try to get pics of those next week.

5/11 Port Isbella, So. Padre Island, Claytons, Thunderstorm

Day trip, drove around S. Padre went around looking at houses and lots. Then we drove around Port Isabella, checked out boat yard, shrimpers and then went to Pirates Landing, walked out on the wharf. Went to dinner at Claytons, we checked it out the other day and so went there for dinner, sat and watched people on the beach and the volleyball players. I had a Pina Colada, which was not the best, and the Fried Shrimp plate, Rick had the Nachos and a beer.

Evidently you can rent chase lounges and umbrellas, that they take down and put away at 6pm. Interesting that people came as people were leaving. saw lotsa coolers coming and going. It does make sense because it is so warm and humid.

That night we had a lightening and Thunder storm, opened the blinds to see. Love these storms.

Lotsa lots available both on the water and off, then we went to Isla Blanca and just watched the people, birds, fishermen & women.

Ruddy Turnstone are everywhere

We went to Pirates Landing

What to drink while watching Volleyball
what to watch at Claytons beach

BROWNSVILLE AND BOCA CHICA 5/7

The Causeway runs between Port Isabella and South Padre Island, is also called Queen Isabella Bridge.

We drove down to Brownsville where there is a huge shipyard that large ships are built, rebuilt or cut-up. I have seen a couple ships and put them in my blog. Ships come in thru a narrow breakwater from the Gulf of Mexico called the Brazos Santiago Pass, then south on the Goose Island Passing Basin continuing onto the Brownsville Ship Channel then onto the Brownsville Ship Harbor.

Brownsvilleis a large city, has all the regular stores, gas stations and a population of. we had really good ,lunch at Raising Caine, then on to Boca Chica.

Bosa Chica is where Spacex has a lot of their operation, it is amazing how many things are going on, and how many people are working on each aspect of getting into space.

We drove on the beach, walked on the beach, collected lotsa shells and saw lotsa birds.

Cinco de Mayo-sn15-earmarks

First of all, although the population seems to be primarily Mexican and we saw nothing about Cinco de Mayo. Maybe being Gringos we were just not invited or maybe there were signs we could not read.

We left early on 5/5 to be sure we had a good place to view the SB15 take-off. People arrived off and on all all day depending on the count-down. We moved a couple of times as cars/trucks came and left. A lot of people fish there, it looks like they catch small fish, there was one lady that had a sizable stringer by the time she left. I will try to get some pictures next time. So we spent all day there, got there about 9am and they FINALLY blasted off around 4pm so I had a lot of time to take dumb pictures. I was really bored and thinking it would probably be scrubbed and it would be another wasted day. The following is a slidshow of dumb things I took pictures of…………

We ate lunch, drank, sat inside and out. It was windy, of course, and sprinkled now and then and since I am so slow, I realized people in So. Padre Island don’t pay any attention to the rain, they fish through it and sit in it and just go on with their lives.

Then FINALLY they decided to launch the SN15. OMG, I was so surprised. I did take pictures of course, I am not a camera expert, But I am getting better……

We were 6 miles away, I started taking pictures as soon as I saw color and kept taking pictures, I really had no idea how loud it would be or how much it is felt. Wow, it was amazing, we could tell when they shut down and could hear when 2 engines started up for the landing I was shaking and the ground was shaking and it ONLY had a total of 3 engines. Rick told me later that eventually there would be 34+ engines. I want to be there, now I’m hooked.

There was a really large cloud of dust as a result of the launch, you can see some of it in some pictures.

Most RV Parks are run by the County, we have a parking ticket that works at any beach and RV Park, except the KOA. we think they have their own.

EARMARKS

Rick and I have been traveling around and saw Roads, Bridges, Parks etc named after people I have never heard of. There are a couple of roads in San Diego County named after people I have heard of, but I am from San Diego. I was trying to figure out who these people were/are and I found they are named after the politician who got earmarks for that item. My feeling is and continues to be forget earmarks, have everything detailed so taxpayers know what they are paying for. Of course every city has a MLK something. but aside from him, I had never heard of these people.

MLK changed our world so his name should always be remembered. but all these other people die and no normal traveling person knows who they were, it seems to me that a lot of these people think they are being immortalized but nor do they care.

National Parks  

President Woodrow Wilson established the National Park Service in 1916 to consolidate management of America’s federal parklands under one agency. … While America’s national parks drew upon earlier examples of European woodland preservation, they were a uniquely American idea rooted in democracy, philosophy and art.

Now, there are 63 national parks

On March 1, 1872, Yellowstone became the first national park for all to enjoy the unique hydrothermal and geologic wonders. The broad array of habitat types found within Yellowstone contributes to a high diversity of bird species, including many whose migratory travels bring them back to the park each year from winter journeys south.

“National parks are the best idea we ever had. Absolutely American, absolutely democratic, they reflect us at our best rather than our worst.”

April 23 2021 to June 1, 2021

We took a couple rides to the flats and wildlife trails and saw lotsa birds

At Wildlife trail saw these whistling ducks cleaning themselves and then a Grackle came to visit
Very windy but Noisy Grackle came to visit, this bird makes the weirdest noises, wait and listen at the end as long as his mouth is open me is making sounds.
Bird Sanctuary Great Blue slowly going back in hiding

It really rained last night, a lot of lightening and thunder 4/29 and then today 4/30 we went to Isla Blanca to watch the take off of SN15 at Bolsa Chica. Lotsa people , SpaceX keeps changing the time, but it is clearing up, so we shall see…..then it rains….. finally scrubbed at 1:00 not trying again until Monday 5/3.

So we watched people, there was a decommissioned ship, dancing girls and a tractor. what more could you want?

Dancing Girls
Boat going out and seagulls flying by


We found out today that they double booked the spot we were gonna move to…….as it turns out they are giving us another one that is better. On concrete full hook-ups. we are happy campers, maybe. It’s raining again we can’t wait til tomorrow when we move. We moved today Saturday, in the rain, waiting to see if we like this space.

« Older Entries