Safely back in our (old) home

Miss D. and I arrived safely in Nashville this afternoon, to be met by an ecstatically purring cat.  We’ll be here for another few weeks before heading back to Texas – this time permanently – at the end of the month.

I have to give a shout-out to the Hyundai Sonata we rented in Texas for the return trip (we left my pickup and trailer there, so that when we head that way again we can drive a rented van and tow Miss D.’s car behind it).  It proved extremely comfortable, almost as much so as the larger and much more expensive Chevrolet Impala we drove 4,000 miles to Blogorado and back last year.  With my fused spine and nerve damage, and Miss D.’s shoulder and knee injuries, we’re used to discomfort when traveling long distances by vehicle, but with the Sonata there wasn’t any to speak of – a rare treat.  It cruised comfortably in the mid-70 mph range, even up steep hills, with very good overtaking acceleration, yet was quiet enough to permit normal conversation, and returned excellent fuel economy while absorbing bumps and potholes with aplomb.  I’m impressed, so much so that when we come to buy another vehicle, I’ve already made a mental note to check out the then-current Hyundai lineup.  I really hadn’t expected that good a car from them.

Returning it to the rental agency was fun, too.  They were completely out of cars, and so were the branches nearest them, including at Nashville airport.  I’ve no idea why there was such a high demand for rental cars today, but there it was.  When we walked in to return a one-way rental from Texas, you’d think we were a relief column for a besieged city, they were so pleased to see us!  They immediately hauled the car round the corner to be cleaned, and I daresay it was back on the road with another customer within an hour.

We’ll get settled in tonight, then it’ll be time to start packing the duplex and getting ready for the move.  I think, if the contractor can finish his work a little earlier than scheduled and our friends can get the laminate flooring laid in time, we might even head south again a little earlier than planned.  I’m eager to get to Texas.  The climate, wide open spaces and distant horizons remind me very much of parts of Africa, and I feel right at home there.  I’m looking forward to becoming an adopted Texan.



  1. Deb and I know a spot on the 173 where you can see zebra and wildebeest grazing, if you feel the need. Another that claims giraffes.

  2. The only complaint I have for Texas is its size when traveling. Driving across most states is fairly easy – crossing Texas is an expedition ! :^) But some beautiful country, yes.

    Be sure to attempt to try and visit the Texas Hill Country during the spring, some beautiful two lane 'Blue Highways' there.

  3. Hey, when you come down to see the Bluebonnets, I can baptize you in the Guadalupe River in Comfort! That'll make you a naturalized Texan! And just for the tally books, Comfort is a few mile away from Welfare…. but only in TEXAS!

    I'm sure the IQ will fall miserably in TN when you leave.

    Welcome home!!!


  4. The climate, wide open spaces and distant horizons remind me very much of parts of Africa, and I feel right at home there

    I knew several South Africans when I was going to college at UT Austin back in the 1970's. All of them stated the climate was a lot like that "back home".

    I gather you are going to be near Wichita Falls. Gonna ride in the "Hotter than Hell 100" in August??? Buddy of mine who was into bicycling did, once.

  5. I've only been driving through Texas once. A trip into Dallas, coming across 10 from Phoenix. Left via 30 through Arkansas on my way to somewhere, DC I think.

    Absolutely beautiful state all along, but my preference is definitely the eastern half overall.

    I'll second the Hyundai. I was totally surprised about how nice they are (as a car manufacturer). When my wife and I were in the market for a new(er) minivan, we checked out all kinds and settled on the Hyundai almost immediately. The only downside was the gas mileage isn't as good as our old Dodge was. But the power in that 3.8L V6 is amazing. I have no reservations about buying another Hyundai in the future.

  6. Just think. You're following in the footsteps of Davy Crockett. (…you might want to stay away from the Alamo.)

    Here's a fun fact about Texas: The distance from Beaumont Texas to El Paso Texas is greater than the distance from El Paso Texas to Los Angeles California.

  7. Welcome to Texas. I've only been here 15 years, so I am still not a true Texan. But my youngest daughter was born in Houston, just barely. It's good to know that we have a genuine Native Texan in the family, just in case we need to apply for citizenship to the new Republic of Texas one day. Coming from New York State, it was good to get an "anchor baby" for our family!

    Loosely translated in the way most legendary quotes are: (directed to the people in his former Tennessee district:) "they might go to hell, and I would go to Texas" – Davy Crockett, ca 1834

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