my POETRY | ANNI'S BOOK CRITIQUES | my ART | my BIRD photography | MLB | NFL | hurricanes



Got a good reason For taking the easy way out
Black and White Background courtesy of free backgrounds




Walking, History - Book Tour [blog-style]

Erik, our son, was here for over a week during the holiday break from his teaching position at the college in Houston. For a few days, weather permitting, he and I did a lot of walking. Of course, he walked faster and way ahead of me for the most part! LOL One day he wanted to work different muscles in his body with a more 'hilly' area instead of the flatlands you find in town. Well, putting my thinking cap on: "Hmmmm, hilly, huh? Okay, how 'bout HILLtop Community Trails then?" Off we went. He did ALL the trails and then walked 'em a 2nd time.  After I walked them once around, I then took photos. This park is a bit of an historical area. With an historical cemetery on the other side of the street...and the park/trails being 'home' to Nuecestown School [1884]. Afterwards we then drove to West Guth Park. Also rolling hills, trails, and swimming pool, duck ponds and picnic areas. I'll share a few photos of that day, keeping  'em small for loading time:



Nuecestown School House - Historical Markers
Nuecestown, Texas [now incorporated Corpus Christi, Texas]





Along the many paths of Hilltop Community Hiking/Biking Trail









Birds Spotted in West Guth Park [between Corpus Christi and Calallen, Texas] top to bottom:

Brown Goose - Hybrid Mallard Duck - Northern Shoveler Duck & Cormorant - Couch's Kingbird [yellow breast] & Loggerhead Shrike




* * * * *

I am not much on historical facts, nor reading much on history. But, throughout the years I've often wondered just how some of the states got their shape within the USA borders. When I found this book [I've been looking for it for weeks at the used book store on my son's recommendation], I bought it. I'm sure I won't read it from cover to cover, but I will glance at it every once in a while when the curiosity gets the better of me. At first glance I skimmed the states' chapters and found Texas of course....for instance:
  1. for what reason is the Texas panhandle?
  2. why stop short of Kansas border creating a panhandle for Oklahoma?
  3. Texas only follows the Rio Grande a partial distance...why?
  4. the northwest border, why turn on such a sharp angle when and where it does?
In short, history tells us Texas is shaped as it is for several reasons. The Spanish [1691], the French, the John Quincy Adams-Onis Treaty, Texas slavery and the Missouri Compromise gives boundary precedence on the panhandle. Before the Independence of Texas it was a much larger land area....with boundaries reaching north to where Wyoming is now. Even with the land that Texas lost once part of the Union, it is still the largest state in the main, continental U. S. What it all boils down to is this: Congress did not create Texas. Texas created Texas; paying off debts etc; selling land. No other state equals!!


I'm sure reading about all fifty states [yes, including Hawaii that, you'd think, would be obvious...but not so. THERE ARE historical facts of interest here too!] The book just may evolve into a valuable history lesson for me.


- - -

I found two books that day. The other one I bought that caught my eye, is a novel. Based on South Texas Folklore, the tale of a headless rider...The Headless Horseman a Strange Tale of Texas Legend. I've only read a few chapters so far. The narrative is slow, but remains interesting and intrigues me to continue reading. From Wikipedia:
    The novel was reportedly inspired by Creed Taylor's (1820–1906) true story of El Muerto, the Headless Horseman. Taylor was a veteran of the Texas Revolution, the War with Mexico, the Civil War and an Indian fighter, who was also involved in the Sutton–Taylor feud, once considered the state's longest and deadliest feud. Also, Texas Rangers & horse thieves with decapitating one wrangler as a warning which prompted: "Travelers and soldiers at Fort Inge near Uvalde soon were reporting sightings of a wily headless rider."

I'm sure this novel would be of more interest to Bud than for me since he's the one who dwells in western novels and novelists with the likes of Braun, Brand, McMurtry, Johnston, Zane Grey, etc. But this may be a new genre that will be a good read; a bit reminiscent of Irving's Legend of Sleepy Hollow,  a favorite of mine...lol.



20 comments :

  1. Hello, Anni
    I always assumed Texas was a flat state with no hills. I guess I was wrong. Wonderful captures and variety of birds. Happy Sunday, enjoy your new week!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, for the most part, in my area along the coast, it's flat. But there are mountains to the west along the Rio Grande and hill country up toward Austin, the capital.

      Delete
  2. You have such energy and gumption for life. I admire your active ventures and inquiring mind. It is so varied and interesting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alas, it's been so cold and rainy I haven't walked in days. I don't like going to the mall, with so many younger folk with school aged children, it's a petri dish this time of year. lol

      Delete
  3. You son's visit sounds wonderful! How great that the two of you got out to do some exercise walking, and that you were also able to get some birding in as well. That Hilltop community sounds like a great place to visit! Loved seeing the schoolhouse. There's a TV show about the shapes of the different states. I've only seen it a couple of times. We are considering getting rid of our cable soon, and getting Roku and Hulu. It will be a different experience, but I think we will b so happy when we do, especially for the savings in money! Anyway, that Headless Horseman book sounds really great! Here's to the coming year! Hope all is great for you and yours!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I thought of you with the states' book!

      Delete
  4. Those looks like some great trails to walk. Glad you had a nice visit with your son. Your son must be quite the athletic one doing the trails more than once. I would be lucky to get through once. Heck just reading about you two doing all that walking I'm exhausted :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He used to be...but got 'lazy' when he started teaching. He was anxious to get back in the groove.

      Delete
  5. Fine pictures, Anni. I'm glad you took the time to photograph them for me. And that's some interesting Texas history. I kind of wondered about the shape of Texas and now I know: it grew itself! :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope to go through it eventually, finding the reason for the shapes of the states, but I'm in no hurry. lol

      Delete
  6. What a marvelous place to hike and tour, and as far as the facts go, I often forget most of it too, but I always remember how a place made me feel. Your pictures bring that same feeling of being there. I hope your new year finds you many more places to visit and share with us. Take care.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My sister has the same outlook/attitude....she remembers the feelings and tells me she has the photo permanently etched on the back of her mind always!!!

      Delete
  7. A nice variety of birds!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I'm glad you were able to have Erik there, and good for both of you in getting that walking done. It looks like a pretty spot for it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a pretty place...and oh so quiet for the most part. I like that.

      Delete
  9. Oh that book on state shapes sounds very interesting!!
    Don't you just love it when the adult children come visiting. I'm glad you had a nice visit
    Hugs madi and mom

    ReplyDelete
  10. I'm glad you could take a walk with Erik. It's a pretty place and I love the bird photos. That book on state shapes sounds interesting.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Sounds like you had some lovely time with your son. I've often wondered about where they came up with the names of the states, but I'd never considered the shapes.
    Hope you have a happy, healthy 2016!!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Sounds like your son kept you moving, Anni! I'm impressed with your exercise regime. Keep that heart healthy!

    ReplyDelete

.