Beginning the Vacation Trip

Written 11/20/04

As I begin to write this, I am sitting at an Exxon station in La Grange, Texas. My family and I are on our second vacation which doesn�t consist entirely of visiting family. We borrowed my folks RV and we are going to Austin, where we used to live, to visit friends.

My folks bought the RV, which actually isn�t too big. It�s about two feet wider than a big pickup and about three feet longer. It will sleep two reasonably well. (The problem with that is that there are four of us. We�re hoping the boys will be able to sleep inside our friend�s house. Obviously it�s plenty for my folks.) They took it on a trip of the MidWest/Western US this fall. They went to Nebraska, South Dakota, Wyoming. They visited the Black Mountains, Jackson Hole, and Mt. Rushmore. Then they went to Yellowstone and stayed there a few days. Then they traveled down to Flagstaff, AZ and went to the Grand Canyon. They�ve been many times, because my mom grew up in Flagstaff and that�s where my dad went to college. But this time they went to the opposite side. They loved it because it was much less commercial than the one they normally visit. After that they went to Phoenix where my mom�s best friend lives. Mom stayed there for two weeks and Dad flew home. Mom hired her best friend�s son to drive her back to Texas. Then Mom and Dad showed him around Texas some, taking him to Galveston and San Antonio, before putting him on a plane back home.

My folks had planned to go to the East Coast this fall, too, but they didn�t manage it. Too many health problems. They�ve been home trying to get well. Hopefully they�ll be well by Christmas because we are all supposed to be out in North Carolina for Christmas. One of my sisters and my only brother both live with their spouses just outside of Durham. My brother said that if Mom and Dad can�t get out, that he�ll fly to Texas to visit. But we�ve already got plane tickets to NC, so we�ll be out there whether he is or not. One of my best friends has moved to NC, to Charlotte, and I�m hoping to borrow my sister�s car and get out there to see her. She said she�d meet me half way, so I won�t get to see the family, but maybe we could have a fun day antiquing or something.

We�re going to be in Austin for three days. Tonight we�re having dinner with friends my husband Ron met through work. They�re a fun couple. They have three kids, much younger than ours. Then we�re going to another friend�s house to park the RV. Her eldest was born on the same day as my youngest and they were best friends when we lived in Austin. They�ve grown very different since then, but they still enjoy each other�s company. Tomorrow we�re going to our old church, Hope Chapel. We are really looking forward to that. In the four years we�ve been in our new area we haven�t been able to find a church as good. We�ve settled down at one for the duration, but it�s nowhere near the best church we�ve ever been to. Our favorite restaurant in Austin is Chuy�s, but we have those in Houston now, too, and we generally go once a week, even though the nearest one is 45 minutes from our house. We�re mostly just going to visit friends. Since we lived in Austin four and a half years, we have a lot of friends there.

The hardest part of moving from anywhere is usually leaving your friends. My move from Austin was a little easier because my two best friends moved soon after I did. One moved the next week, so I knew she was going. The other found out six months later that she was moving. One�s in NC, as I said. The other is in Dallas. But she�ll be in Austin this weekend and I�ll see her at church tomorrow and meet her for lunch on Monday.