Not All Who Wander Are Lost

Not All Who Wander Are Lost
October, 2017 - Mexico

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Texas State Capitol

We left Carrollston yesterday morning around 10:30 am. There was very little traffic as we made our way through Dallas. I think New Years Day morning is an excellent time to travel through a big city. There were very few people out and about. As you can see, it was overcast and a bit hazy, but at least we didn’t have any rain.

There was a lot of construction around Dallas, both road and buildings. I guess the economy is doing pretty well there.

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We’ve never been to Dallas so we may stop in the area on our way back north. It was too cold and rainy to do anything this time.

We arrived at Oak Forest RV Resort in Austin yesterday afternoon. This is another Passport America member campground. The discounted rate is $22 per night, Sunday through Thursday only. What a nice place, very clean and well maintained. They have a pool and hot tub, although its been too cold to even think about getting into the water. The sites are 50 amp FHU concrete paved pull-thrus and totally level. We would definitely stay here again.

The weather has bee unseasonably cold and overcast with highs around 50 degrees which is around 15 degrees below average. The weather people keep going on about how cold it is and there is even a chance of some snow in west Texas tomorrow which is big news.

Today we decided to drive into Austin and see what we could find to do. Our first stop was the Texas State Capitol. We toured the Wisconsin capitol a few years ago, so I was curious to see what Texas had to offer. It’s a very nice looking building made out of Texas red granite. Most capitols I’ve seen are white, so it was a little different to see a red capitol building.

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Outside on the grounds there were a number of monuments and statues. This monument was dedicated to the Tejanos. After reading the plaques, it seems the term has changed meaning over the years. At first it referred to people of Spanish decent. Now it seems to refer more to Mexican Americans. I thought it was an interesting monument.

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We went on the free guided tour. Our guide Victoria was pretty good. The rotunda is 218 feet from top to bottom. At the top is an 8 foot wide star. It looks so tiny from down at the bottom. Around the points of the star are the letters TEXAS. (Click on picture to see a bigger version.)

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We saw the Senate and Legislature chambers and learned some Texas history facts. I must say the Wisconsin capitol is much fancier and more ornate, but this was a worthwhile tour and visit.

P1130360Eventually there was an extension built to house offices of many of the politicians who do business here. There is a skylight where you can see the original dome. What a neat idea. Lady Liberty is at the top of the dome. Parking was free for the first two hours so this was a very economical sightseeing destination.

 

Next we drove around the University of Texas campus. The Texas Longhorns Stadium is huge. I couldn’t get a good picture because of all the buildings in the way. Our next stop was at the Lyndon Johnson Museum and Library. I had read online and in visitor information that the museum was free so we thought we’d check it out.

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When we got to the door, there was a sign that said as of Dec. 23rd they were asking for an $8 admission to help pay for recent renovations. We weren’t interested enough to actually pay so we left.

Our last stop of the day was at Central Market. Our friend Carol had recommended a visit. It’s a Whole Foods type of store. I bought some organic Fugi apples that were on sale. They had some very interesting items, but many were more expensive than we are willing to spend. They had a beautiful looking rib roast which was $90. That’s almost a whole days work at Amazon. No thanks! There were samples of some of the produce, so I tried a couple of different types of oranges. Yummy!!

The parking lot at Central Market has an electric car parking spot. I’ve heard of the recharging parking spots for electric cars, but this was the first time I’ve actually seen one. Cool.

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There are a number of outdoor activities in Austin. There is a bike trail around a lake in the downtown area and some hiking opportunities that looked interesting. Maybe we’ll stop again on our way back north. It was just too crummy out today to do outside stuff.

Tomorrow we’re headed to Mission for our month long stay at Americana RV Resort. We’ll be passing San Antonio but won’t stop there until sometime in March. The weather forecast for Mission is cool and rainy until Sunday. Next week highs are supposed to be in the 70s and sunny. That’s more like it!!

Don’t wish upon a star – Reach for one!