Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Texas Rangers - Waco, Texas

Original Early Texas Ranger Badge, fashioned from a Mexican Coin

Roger here....  We are truly on a fast track (for us) on the way back to our winter home in Mission, Texas. 

 Our typical routine on travel days is to rise when the sun wakes us up.  Drink coffee.  Spend a little time on the computer.  Eat breakfast (usually yogurt and blueberries).  Take the dogs on a walk. Get the motor home ready to drive.  And drive.

Some people like to drive for the entire day.  We prefer to drive less than four hours so we can enjoy the rest of the day.  This may not be everyone's preference, but it works well for us.  That being said, it takes more days of driving when we travel longer distances.

When we left central Arkansas, we knew it would involve several days of driving to get to our home at Retama Village (most of it in the state of Texas).  

Texas Ranger Statue
Waco, Texas was a half-way point and had two museums that we wanted to visit (the Dr Pepper Museum --- Dianne's choice --- and the Texas Ranger Museum).  We decided to spend two nights at an Army Corps of Engineers Campground on Waco Lake to break up the trip a bit, and to allow adequate time for both museum visits.  

Unfortunately for Dianne, the Dr Pepper Museum was closed on Mondays, but we had a very interesting visit at the Texas Ranger Museum.  I will let Dianne take it from here.

Dianne here:  Roger always has me write the museum entries, because I love museums!   I'll post some of the items that caught my eye, along with descriptive captions.

All the flags which have flown over Texas 
Spain, France, Mexico, Republic of Texas (still the Texas State Flag), Confederate States of America, and USA.

Map of Spanish Tejas, showing major Indian tribes

Early guns used by Texas Rangers
Guns pretty much bore me, but these examples of the very early ones were interesting.  

At 11:00 we went into the theater to watch a very interesting video about the history of the Texas Rangers.   It explained that the very first Texas Rangers used whatever guns they had brought with them from Kentucky or wherever else they had once lived.   These didn't hold up well in fights against the Indians, because they were single shot and took up to a minute and a half to reload, while the Indians could shoot off several arrows during that much time.  The colt repeater evened the fight, especially if the ranger carried two of them.  If you are into guns, there were LOTS and LOTS of gun displays.   The only thing I found interesting were the guns you could lift and hold, showing just how heavy they were -- up to five pounds!

Entrance to one of the display rooms
After entering the room above, we saw several posters and displays of Texas Rangers through the years in film and on TV.   One of my favorite TV shows as a kid was the Lone Ranger...

Other TV shows based upon Texas Rangers include "Laredo" and "Walker, Texas Ranger."
My favorite mini-series was also based upon two retired Texas Rangers.   I've watched "Lonesome Dove" and read the book twice each.

Other displays showed the clothing worn by Rangers over the years, and saddles and other items.

One thing we learned during the video was that it was the Texas Rangers who finally took down Bonnie and Clyde in the 1930s.   Here's an oil painting which depicts the final ambush:

The video we watched showed actual photographs taken at the scene of the takedown, with Bonnie and Clyde still inside the car.

We spent a good two hours in the museum -- money well spent to view this interesting aspect of Texas history.  Someday I still hope to also see the Dr Pepper museum!    Back to Roger....

Roger here...  Waco is the home of Baylor University.  I love college football and have come to appreciate the football programs at Baylor (and Texas Christian).  Don't misunderstand, Purdue is still my team during good years and bad years, and always will be.  The Big Ten is still my favorite conference.  However, since I am enjoying Texas football, it was cool to see McLane Stadium in the distance.  

Wandering around a museum can build an appetite. As we left the museum, the museum greeter highly recommended the Brazos Bar and Bistro in the Indigo Hotel for lunch.  

Chicken-black bean nachos
We are so glad that we took her advice!  Dianne had chicken-black bean nachos (picture to the right).  I had the stuffed avocado in the photo below.  We both agreed that it may well have been the best restaurant meal we have had since leaving Texas last May.  It was so good, that each of us gained a pound :-(.  Back to smoothies for lunch for a while.  

Stuffed Avocado

One last welcome back to Texas story...   On the way back to the motor home we stopped by our favorite Texas grocery store, 
H-E-B.  We stopped to get a few groceries to get us back to our home in Mission.  I also bought an insulated Baylor Bears cup in the "Gear Store."  It will be perfect for cool drinks on the warm Rio Grande Valley days to come.

I am writing this from an RV park on the south side of San Antonio.  We will drive home tomorrow.  

We will continue to post occasionally from Retama Village (if there is anything to write about), but not very frequently.  We do plan to take a few shorter trips this winter that might be of interest.  We'll pick back up next April or May when we once again hit the road.

Dianne again:   One of the things we'll be doing when we're at home again is volunteering to walk the dogs at Cinderella Pet Rescue two mornings a week.  The pet photo of the day is not our dogs, but the newest additions who were picked up in Mission, Texas this past week as strays.  I consider all the dogs at Cinderella "my" dogs too!  These two were skinny and malnourished (as you can tell from the photo).   Now they're at Cinderella, being well fed and protected, and will have a chance at a new life with a loving forever home. 

 In the photo below they've been fed and had their bath, probably their first bath ever.   Their new names are Sunbeam and Moonbeam.   I can't wait to meet them and become one of their walking pals!   Let's hope they both find awesome families to love them forever.  
Sibling Cuddle Time after their First-Ever bath

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I've been following your blog for a few years. Somehow I found it because of whippets in the name. I for one miss your regular posts even if it's just showing the animals or the great food you've prepared. You may think it's boring stuff but I so enjoy seeing a new post. When you don't post for a long time I actually get concerned something is wrong. Don't become too much of a hermit!