As I mention in a previous post, San Antonio was not the only trip me and Karin made in our new car and next up was Houston, to visit Karin’s mother, step dad and their dog, my mother-in-law, step father-in-law and I suppose, dog-in-law, respectively named Dianne, Craig and Bella. In that order.
We drove down on February 25th, a Friday, and went back on on the 27th, so a nice little weekend trip.
As it turns out, I didn’t take a while lot of pictures, so forgive me for that, Karin and Dianne got some though, so I’ll gracefully steal some of theirs for the purpose of illustrations.
We got to Houston around 10 Pm if memory serves me right (it rarely does, so take that with a grain of salt), said hello to Bella and Dianne (Craig was/is still recovering after a serious fight with cancer, so he rested a lot) and shortly after drove out to pick up a bicycle helmet for Karin, reason being that the plan was for Karin and me to join Dianne on a Saturday morning bike ride the next morning. This gave us an excellent chance to show off our vehicle to Dianne and expose her to some profane rock music off of the Sons of Anarchy soundtrack. For those who might not know, Dianne is Mormon, and it’s always amusing when we expose her to our “way of life”. That said, it’s always in good fun and I’m pretty sure my dear mother-in-law finds it somewhat amusing too. 😉
The next morning we woke up around 7 Am to go off to our biking event. Despite the ungodly hour, it was nice to be on a bicycle again. Those who know me, might also know that I used to be a relatively avid cyclist in my youth, going on cycling vacations with my dad or nice little “rounds” on weekends during summer. In later years, I haven’t been cycling much, and my health deteriorated. Every time I tried to get back into it, the physical discomfort was so severe that I stopped. This time though, I felt great! It turns out the main problem must’ve been my Asthma medication. I’m on a new one now, and experienced nothing of the awfulness of years past!
We did a decent 25 mile round trip, last half of which was mostly in headwind and it was a perfect length for both Karin and me, afterwards we stopped by Five Guys to make sure we put on whatever calories we shed, and then some, after all, we are in Texas.
Karin and me stretching our untrained legs after the bike ride. Photo©: Dianne
After a nice long shower, we wanted to check out downtown Houston.
As it turns out, Karin hadn’t actually been down there, despite living in Houston for almost a year, so it was exploration for the both of us. Surprisingly, downtown Houston was actually really nice, the built up areas were, or at least seemed, much larger than Dallas and it was far more pedestrian friendly. There were several nice parks, the rail system was well thought out and the general layout seemed a lot more organic than that of Dallas.
Parts of a park and the view from it, downtown Houston.
My lovely wife through the “eyes” of a 10mm Sigma.
Trying to be artist now, still in the same park.
As the evening drew closer and our already tender legs grew tired we sat down and pulled out our respective, clever phones to search for a good place to eat. In normal fashion, neither of us had a clear idea of what we wanted, and many a discussion followed. We eventually ended up at a small, I believe family owned, Italian place right off some highway. Turns out we made a good choice. The food was delicious, reasonably priced and relatively filling. Though portions could’ve been a little bigger, one can’t complain when the price is added to the equation. We went back to Craig and Dianne’s place gastronomically and culturally fulfilled.
The next day consisted mainly of driving home. We didn’t want to come in to Dallas too late, as Karin had work the morning after, so we made quick work of the miles ahead. We did make sure to stop at Woody’s Smokehouse on the way home though, where we bough some dressings and I was born again to the angelic hymns of buffalo jerky. Safe to say, I bought some, and every time someone I know drive past there now, I make sure they pick some up for me.
We got back home safely, took a shower and crawled into bed. We had a good time down in Houston, and we’ll probably make it down there again soon, but next up were Colorado. More on that in the next episode of “Rediscovering Vineland, a Norwegians journey through America!”.