Friday, May 19, 2017

Bounding to Burleson

It came to my attention rather recently that although we visit Burleson frequently, I’d never
Decorated fence
written a blog about it. Burleson is the closest ‘city’ to Vince; this is where he does most of his shopping. It has lots of chain restaurants, some ‘big box’ stores, and medical facilities. It was also the location of my first venture into the job market. I was about 16 and had just gotten a driver’s license so I needed money to support the life-style to which I wanted to become accustom. While the other students in my high school were driving into Fort Worth to work as salesclerks, burger flippers, or other jobs suitable for that age group, I went to work on Saturdays for a medical doctor; I also worked there in the summers. It seemed like a good idea at the time and did give me a chance to decide if I really wanted to work in the blood, tears, and other bodily fluids that could on occasion spew forth from a human being. The answer to that question was a profound, ‘No’!


Friday, May 12, 2017

History on Headstones

Headstone art
Dave plays golf at a number of clubs in near Keller and never likes to take the same route to them more than a couple of times. This means that he see some out-of-the-way places, discovers things of interest and gets lost a lot. Old cemeteries catch his attention because of the artwork on the monuments and the sometimes odd places they are located. One day neither of us was content to stay home, so we went to visit two of these graveyards that had aroused his curiosity.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Looking around Lantana

Entrance to Lantana
Lantana is a community that was developed around the Lantana Golf Course. There is not much history to it since it was established in 1999. Near-Normal Traveler, Dave, discovered it when he met a group of men to play golf at the course there. What neither of us realized, until we explored the area, was that is site ‘cheek by jowl’ with Bartonville.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Going to Glen Rose

It’s not lions and tigers and bears, but reptiles and water and mud, Oh My! One of my
Old tree and blue sky
memories from the 1950s is traveling to the Paluxy River to see the dinosaur tracks. I thought that the tracks were made the day before and was rather disappointed when I was told that they were trace fossils; I wouldn’t see any actual dinosaurs lurking in the woods. We clambered down the side of the river and stared into the muddy water to see holes in rocks. My other disappointment was that there had been lots of rain and the water was too deep for me to sit in the tracks. I was underwhelmed. I’m fairly sure that I hadn’t been back to Glen Rose until this last visit. This time, although there had been rain, the water was clear and the tracks were visible, plus it was a warm day with a bright, blue, Texas sky – it was worth the drive!


Friday, April 21, 2017

Out in Oakland and Reviews

Across the Bay Bridge is the municipality of Oakland. As complex as San Francisco, it has a
Getting on the Bay Bridge
completely different flair. There are neighborhoods rather than Districts and the downtown has a much more industrial feel to it. With the same background as the other cities (Huchiun Indians then Spanish settlers, then part of Mexico, and finally claimed by the US) Oakland was originally called encinal, Spanish for ‘oak grove’, because of the extensive oak forest that covered the area. The Oakland Long Wharf at Oakland Point and the major terminus for the Central Pacific Railroad proved the wisdom of Horace Carpentier, Edson Adams, and Andrew Moon in establishing the city in the mid-1800s. Other entrepreneurs, such as Francis "Borax" Smith developed a streetcar company; other such innovations as electric service and telephones connected Oakland and Berkeley, making both cities desirable places to live and work. By 1920, Oakland boasted many manufacturing industries, including metals, canneries, bakeries, internal combustion engines, automobiles, and shipbuilding. A short nine years later, Chrysler added another automobile manufacturing plant, making Oakland the ‘Detroit of the West’. Thankfully, it has not suffered the same fate as Detroit. 


Friday, April 14, 2017

Berkeley Byways

When Teri was a young child living in Texas she told her parents she wanted to go live in
View of San Francisco Bay from Lawrence Hall of Science
Berkeley. Twenty years ago she made this dream come true. She and John live in a pretty house that is often visited by opossums and skunks raiding the cat food dish on the back deck. And the wild turkeys still get the right-of-way on the hilly streets. Whatever I expected the Berkeley area to be, a home to wild animals wasn’t in the picture. Looking up into the hills you see houses surrounded by lush vegetation, while in the other direction there is a wonderful view of the bay. Perched nearly at the top of a hill is an iconic institute: Lawrence Hall of Science. Out of this organization come the underpinnings of innovative science education programs that have been adopted around the country. Before I left academia I was privileged to participate in the distribution of one of these programs, FOSS. I still believe that the best method for teaching science and for getting students intellectually involved is through experimentation; FOSS develops both intellectual involvement and curiosity to support life-long learning. Teri has one of the best jobs on the planet; she writes and tests the curriculum for the FOSS modules.


Friday, April 7, 2017

Open Your Golden Gate!

Swarovski crystals and gift bags
Again this year I traveled to the City by the Bay (see Sashaying around San Francisco) to do some Beading by the Bay. Our wonderful instructors were Maggie Meister, Sherry Serafini and Liisa Turunen. I’m sorry to say that I have yet to complete even one of the projects the delightful women taught, but I am working on them! Like many large cities, San Francisco includes a bunch of ‘districts’ that give it even more color and texture. And thanks to good friends Teri and John, I was able to sample more of the area than just around the hotel. We had some wonderful adventures and ate some outstanding food!