There’s not much that a morning of blue herons and kiskadees can’t cure

Maybe this yearlong road-trip thing is going to work after all. We’ve just marked our one-week anniversary on the road and it felt like a celebration.

Tensions have eased, tempers have calmed and the pure joy of simple living and traveling has returned. Our traveling bedroom is comfortingly familiar but we get to try out an exciting new “living room” nearly every day. Gives new meaning to the concept of A Room With a View.

Several developments helped smooth our wrinkles. First, we had a great time at the Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley Birding Center in Mission, Texas. The great kiskadees and green jays were gorgeous, and we got close-up views of more chachalacas. The snorting black javelina added an unexpected dimension to the kingfisher blind.

Later we had quite a conversation with this great blue heron at Boca Chica beach in the southeastern-most tip of Texas.

It also helped that Georges took a day to get the oil changed on the Xterra, grocery shop and putter on his own for a bit while Mom and I got a personal tour of the mid-Rio Grande Valley from my cousin, a 43-year resident of Weslaco. (One favorite detail: Weslaco’s Harlon Block was one of the flag raisers on Iwo Jima; it was his omission from the list of soldiers in the iconic photo that formed the heart of the excellent 2006 Clint Eastwood-directed film, Flags of our Fathers.)

With Mom comfortably ensconced at Carol’s we all enjoyed some breathing space. I actually enjoyed doing laundry – alone.

Most significant, however, are the two grand dinners we enjoyed with several generations of cousins. What a great group of wonderful young people – smart, generous, hard working and talented. All told we ranged in ages from five to 90!

Georges is always happiest creating culinary delights in the kitchen, and he found a new favorite sous chef in cousin-once-removed-by-marriage-David. The rest of us were the happy beneficiaries of their salmon-and-Brie presentation. And of course, there was the ceremonial champagne popping!

A couple of nights later Carol made the best calabacita and nopalitas for Mom, Georges and me. Outstanding!

Soon we’ll be headed north, sticking fairly close to the coast. Who knows what next week holds.

At this point, I’m liking this week a lot.

11 thoughts on “There’s not much that a morning of blue herons and kiskadees can’t cure

  1. Thanks, Cecilia. Great to hear from you. We just watched the sun set across Matagorda Bay, 1500 miles and two weeks into our adventure, sipping a G concoction we’re calling an Apri-Kirk Vodka. (Long story.) Loving it! Pls stay in touch via this website. We miss you too!

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  2. Ahhhhhhh. We’re pretty bad birders. But we enjoy them a lot. One of the many parts of nature you get to enjoy because you’re sharing their domain. We saw some fabulous birds in the Everglades. And loved watching the pelicans soar as we drove to the Keys. Glad your wrinkles are easing. Life is good.

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  3. Hard to believe that you have logged the first week already. It must be a little hard leaving the Valley and all of those great birds and warm family. Be sure to visit Lafitte’s Cove on the west side of Galveston Island and High Island just east of Bolivar for some early migrants.
    Bill

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    1. Thanks, Bill! Will do. The chachalacas aren’t as impressive looking as their name would imply but we are in love with all the green jays, kiskadees and Altamira orioles we are seeing! I signed up for both eBird and ibirds. Still learning how to use them. Putting Mom on a plane home tonight….

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  4. What a wonderful trip, amazing idea to take a year and skirt the states. You will return to Dallas when Ev?

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    1. Thx Dorothy! Mom will be back in Dallas late tonight – Sunday.

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  5. WAY TO GO K & G!

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  6. cast300@yahoo.com March 9, 2018 — 9:29 pm

    It has been such a treat having you here (especially George- don’t get me wrong, I love my aunt Ev and “great cousin” Keven, but cooking with George has been delightful, as well as, delectable!!)
    My family is so thankful for these few days we’ve had together. We hate to see you go but realize you have many more exciting adventures ahead! Safe travels to you! I love you all very much!
    Carol

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    1. We have so enjoyed our visit. What a wonderful family you have! We are so impressed with everybody. Would love to have any/all of you visit us in Dallas. Think of all the Texas State Fairs calling our names. Don’t you think David and Georges should do more cooking for us?

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      1. I’m late getting in this chain, but nonetheless hope that the culinary reunion in Dallas could move a little farther east to Lake Tawakoni.
        G and I already miss you both. We’ll be in touch with Evey next week. (In DC and NYC until then )

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