Exploring Austin, TX

Trip Start May 01, 2013
Trip End May 01, 2014

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Flag of United States  , Texas
Thursday, April 10, 2014

Day 345 -46 - 47 - We spent three days here in Austin, TX visiting our dear friends Mary and John who are our oldest friends - almost 45 years!  We met in Los Angeles before all four of us were married.  We all belonged to the Yeti Ski Club which was made up of a couple different businesses and friends were brought in by members and that's how John and I got to be a part of this group...and the rest, as they say, is history!

Nick and I ended up spending three nights at their home, and left our RV behind (or darn).  It was such fun, we hated to leave them.  However, Nick did "steal" one of their fitted sheets, so we may NEVER be invited back!  I the small world department, Mary and John's son and wife, Christie and son Jack came over for a visit and after talking quite awhile, Christie tells us that she has an aunt and cousin on Hilton Head and of course, we ask who and she tells us, and low and behold (this is for our Old Fort Drive neighbors) it's DONNIE!!!  He lives on our street just a cup-de-sac away!  How fun was that?  She was amazed!

Our first stop on the sightseeing tour was to the Boyhood home and then the Ranch of LBJ.  We had planned to go to the Presidential Library in Austin, but the Ranch was so extensive with the tours and the memorabilia that we felt that we had seen quite a bit. 

The boyhood home is quite cute in Johnson City, TX, not far from the ranch.  It has several out buildings on the property and if you were willing to take a 1/2 mile walk you would have seen the original buildings that LBJ's grandparents lived in when they first came to Texas.  Johnson's father was a Congressman for 12 years and his mother was one of the only college-educated woman in the area.  She was very keen on education, and it rubbed off on all the children. 

The ranch is run by the NP system (675 acres of it).  It includes the Air Force One jet that LBJ used and the house that they lived in when in Austin (LBJ had visited  there often as a child when his grandparents owned the ranch).  He later purchased it and turned it into (and it still is) a working ranch.  The whole property is around 2500 acres.  Both LBJ and Lady Bird are buried there in the family plot.  It's easy to see why he enjoyed coming here and getting away from the rat race in Washington, DC.  Our dinner was at an infamous BBQ place called "The Salt Lick" it was BBQ Texas Style (reminded me of the New England Lobster in the Ruff places)...Great food.

Next day was the Capitol Building.  These State Capitol buildings are always beautiful buildings with wonderful architecture, wood work, and granite, and lots of ambience.  Then if was off to the Texas Museum of History.  There you could have spent a full day.  I felt like I had read the Encyclopedia of Texas by the time we left.  Another huge museum, and well done.

Did I already mention that Lady Bird Johnson and Helen Hayes got together and had wildflowers put in all the grassy areas of the highways and they are still going strong today.  Started in Texas, but you see it in other states as well.  Quite beautiful.

Until next time...

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Bert on

Nice work, Sandy!

Pamela on

Looks like you chose a great place to spend some time exploring and reconnecting with old friends. Fun, fun.

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