Friday, March 28, 2014

One hump or two?

Hunting for some good fried catfish for lunch brought me back to a place I spent part of my teenage years, Mansfield, Texas. We did find some catfish that I’d rate as ‘passable’, but after lunch we stumbled onto a surprise.

Mansfield (1865) was built around a water powered mill that refined corn and wheat, and later was home to what my teen-aged friends and I knew as ‘The Famous Kow Bell Indoor Rodeo’ (1959). This was a great place to see your friends fall off of various livestock and on the odd Saturday night watch the motorcycle races, once again seeing your friends fall face-first into the dirt. Sadly, the Kow Bell Arena has been replaced by a high school.

All around Mansfield are rural roads overhung with ash, oak or willow trees; beside these roads you may see groves of old pecan trees or dense underbrush punctuated by redbuds. There are also the remnants of
Camel near Mansfield, Texas
homesteads, some still with the requisite cattle, horses, pigs, chickens and so forth. However, near the corner of FM2738 and CR528 we were surprised to see two camels. One was hiding in a ditch, but the other was out enjoying a nice lunch. They may have been rescued from something as romantic as a caravan or as mundane as a failed circus, but for now they are residents of Mansfield.

There are a bunch of little towns around Mansfield, such as Rendon, Retta, Venus, New Hope, and Lillian.  All of these have historic cemeteries and some have interesting downtown areas.

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