Texas in July. It’s hot. Yeah, yeah….not a news flash, but the heat has really seemed to kick into high gear the last couple of weeks. We’ve had some interesting weather since we’ve been here, starting with lots of rain, which is atypical, now wrapping up our time here with what is described as typical Texas weather. Greg’s describes it as hell’s waiting room; he’s not far off (just a reference to the heat….nothing more my Texas friends!!).
We loved our visit to Hamilton Pool last week so much we decided go back and take Kennedy since she missed our trip. It was still as beautiful as the first trip and this time we brought water, wore some hiking shoes and used our hiking poles!! Made the whole experience a lot more enjoyable (and safer!!)!!
Hamilton Pool....just beautiful!
Kennedy and Greg at the Falls
Chilling on the rocks....
There was another trail that we didn’t tackle our first trip, so we hit that trail as well. Almost made it to the end before Kennedy declared we were done. It definitely wasn’t as picturesque as the pool, but it was a nice and somewhat challenging hiking trail. Oh, and did I mention it was hot.
Heading to trail #2
Kennedy declaring the hike was over.
Kennedy and Greg share a common bond, belief, love…the love.of Big Foot. They both have spent hours (together and apart) watching “Finding Big Foot.” And by the way, after about 70 or so episodes, they still haven’t actually found Big Foot…..but yet, they still believe. Much to our surprise, we were shocked to discover there have been Big Foot sightings in Canyon Lake, where we are currently staying. What!?!
Kennedy was less than impressed….
One of the local realtors put these cut outs on a piece of land with their billboard next to them. We give it an A for marketing creativity, although I’m not sure I want to buy a house from a realtor with Big Foot as their gimmick.
No trip to Texas is complete without a trip to Lockhart. Lockhart is the official “Barbecue Capital of Texas.” Seriously, it IS the BBQ capital. On May 26, 1999 House Resolution #1024 was adopted by the 76th Texas Legislature naming Lockhart the "Barbecue Capital of Texas," then by the Senate in the Fall of 2003. Obviously, BBQ in Texas is something you don't mess with!!
There are four well-known BBQ joints in Lockhart--Blacks Barbecue, Chisholm Trail BBQ, Kreuz Market, and Smitty’s Market. We tried Kreuz’s this time, which according to Greg, had the best brisket of our trip so far.
And in looking for something else we could do in Lockhart, inside of course, (did I mention it’s hot here?) I found the Caldwell County Jail Museum, so thought we would do the jail tour. Too bad it was only open on Saturday and Sunday and we were there on a Friday, so we drove around Lockhart, snapped a few pictures and called it a day!
Outside picture of the jail.....fancy.
A beautiful Town Hall....also fancy!
And the Library...another fancy building.
Along with all the field trips and stuff, life still goes on, so we have routine things that need to get done….like work, finding insurance, grocery shopping, haircuts, updating our car’s software so it doesn’t get hacked going down the road, etc. One of our bigger routine accomplishments this week was putting finishing touches on our route for the rest of the year, which may sound really fun and easy, but it’s complicated….or maybe I just make it complicated, not sure. We have friends who make no reservations and just “wing it” and while that sounds really fun (and more like us), it just doesn’t work for us right now for a few different reasons—mainly business. So for now, we’ll plan…and route. Route and plan. And if you’re interested in how we do it, we'll be posting our trip planning process later this week.
So let’s talk a little about the drone. Well first, it’s still alive. Just thought I’d start with that. I know many of you had a bet on how long it would take before we crashed it, so if you had a week, you lost.
While we did some research on this flying machine, don’t think we realized what a complicated piece of equipment it was. We had read some of the forums, watched the videos, and of course everything is so easy when it’s on video, but it wasn’t quite so “plug and play” as we had anticipated. First, after getting everything charged up, we turned it on and the lights were red. They weren’t supposed to be red, hmmmm. Greg played with it for a while, and then gave up. I then jumped in and called technical support. (Yes, I’M okay asking for directions; no other commentary.) Their first question, “did you update the firmware?” Uh….no. Somehow that was left out of the instructions/videos!! After we did that, and did some hokey pokey calibration, it was ready to fly.
Greg less than amused, and perhaps a little frustrated trying to get the drone ready to fly.
We brought the drone to my parents for its inaugural flight; thought it would be easier and perhaps a little more controlled from their back yard. We got it up, figured out how to work the controls and also figured out how to take a few pictures. So far so good!! We quickly realized we need another battery because its sort of addicting and flight time per battery is only around 20 minutes.
A picture of the drone taking a picture!!
And a picture from the drone.
Later in the week, equipped with an additional battery, Greg tested its limit (at least that’s my perspective). I had to leave when the drone got out of sight as Greg didn’t appreciate me telling him to “bring it back,” “go lower,” “push the home button.” Said it killed the excitement and I was taking all the fun out of it. Whatever. After reviewing the video of his flight, I think I my comments were appropriate.
This is just a snippit of the video; he went farther (and higher) than the video shows.
Need to practice up on editing.
So, technical start up issues aside, the drone is pretty darn awesome. We are amazed with the clarity of the picture and functionality. It’s fascinating how still of picture it can capture from various heights. Unfortunately, one of our family members isn’t as excited about the drone as the rest of us:
There's no sound, so just imagine incessant barking
And we wrapped up the week with celebrating mom’s birthday. It’s been many many years since we’ve been together on her birthday, so it was great to celebrate with a nice dinner and of course a cake. Happy Birthday Mom!!
Our time in Texas (for now) comes to an end this week as we’re planning on leaving on Friday. My sister and Kennedy will be making the journey with us to Illinois, where we all will spend some time with family and then Cheri and Kennedy will head on to Chicago. We’ll be in Illinois for around ten days, then to Cincinnati, and probably one other stop before we hit southeast PA on August 23rd.
As always, thanks for following along….and stay tuned as our next blog post most likely will be from a different state!!