In a Furrow at Palo Duro

Furrow

My final ride at Palo Duro Canyon wasn’t quite finished. I’d found an unmarked trail and discovered one of various reasons why it was so.

There was surprising diversity in the canyon. Aside from the occasional crack, there were also rocks to be found,

 

caves to be explored,

 

 and trees with shade (or at least sunblock).

 

 The trails, in kind, were equally diverse ranging from easy to challenging. The climb up Rock Garden was probably the most difficult but it was over 90 degrees and crowded with hikers. In any case, the trails and scenery make Palo Duro worth a visit.

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Thanksgiving Done Stark at Palo Duro State Park

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I sure hope your Thanksgiving smelled better than mine.

Spending Thanksgiving in the Grand Canyon of Texas, Palo Duro, has one significant shortcoming, the perfume of the Panhandle. Thankfully, the wind and cooler temps gave me a little nasal congestion so I got a reprieve.

I was also generally too distracted by the landscape to focus on the inconsequential. Lighthouse Rock is the most notable hoodoo.

IMG_1004Turkey jerky, dried cranberries, and sweet potato crisps taste great on the trail but I’m looking forward to a make-up Thanksgiving meal when I return to civilization. After exploring the 25 miles of trail at Palo Duro and 65 at Caprock, I’ll be plenty ready to eat it.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Henry Rollins Sasaeng

Rollins

No one would ever accuse me of being a groupie. I’ve never been overly enthusiastic about an actor, sports team, or much of anything except maybe White Castle. Yes, I’ve seen MDC in Thailand and the Untouchables in Tijuana but those were matters of chance, not intention. As I found myself driving 330 miles to see Henry Rollins, I had to wonder… am I a fanboy (girl)?

The Kessler

The Kessler theater located in… Dallas.

Had it been a weekend in Houston, I would’t have given it a second thought. But no, it was Tuesday, a school night, in Dallas of all places, and I had to administer the PSAT in the morning. I also discovered that a freeway closure would impede my return trip and well, even Henry started the evening talking about enjoying the experience of encountering “weather”. The remnants of some hurricane was saturating the area.

Carbide

330 miles to see Henry’s… photos.

  I may have even been able to linger in denial embracing the notion that its the Trump years and Henry would have much to say on the topic, making it politics but uh, no… it was clearly advertised as a slideshow. A slideshow… I was driving 330 miles in miserable conditions to see pictures taken by a punk icon… no Margaret Bourke-White here. No seat, either. All the seats had sold out but my $40 allowed me to stand in his presence.

As always, Henry was highly entertaining. I can’t say that he has the same effect on me as he did 35 years ago when I left City Gardens staring at the area of my forearm where his sweat had dripped on me for the first time but there’s still something that impels me to go out of my way to see him. I’m not currently on my way to Colorado hoping to catch him at the Boulder Theater tomorrow so I’m probably safe from fanboyism but maybe I’ll stop teasing Lora about stalking Mumford and Sons… maybe.

Happiest Girl in Hill Country

Bluebonnets

Nah… don’t really care about bluebonnets…

“He went away… he’s been gone for such a long time…”

A few weeks after I finished the Munda Biddi, my Trek was stolen. I never expected to see him again, so you can imagine my surprise when I received an email from a Senior Constable of the Perth Police about retrieving my stolen property. Initially, I thought it was a scam. Eventually, I came to realize I just needed to figure out how to bring him home! It took a few weeks to work out the necessary logistics, but…

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“now he’s back and things’ll be fine.”

  We’ve already explored about 30 miles of rocky Austin trail together. I still wonder about our time apart but its been great getting reacquainted.

Where am I?

Dana Sunset

A sunset by a lake.

It started as any nice weekend might with a stroll by the lake after work to unwind. While overcast, the following day was warm and dry and so I did a little exploring.

Dharmachakra Mudra

Dharmachakrapravartana Buddha… teaching from the heart.

While I am no Buddha, Buddhist, or mudra expert, my interpretation of the the wheel of dharma is “teaching from the heart”. I may be wrong but I found it heartwarming to discover this statue.

 Evidently, I had found Wat Pah Samarkki.

Hmmm, trails by a lake, wats… I know its suspicious but I haven’t returned to Thailand. My next find did lead me to wonder…

Does the gruffalo exist? Was this the creature that inspired H.R. Giger? Do aliens live in my backyard? Where am I?

Current Habitat and Hog

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I don’t own the house just plan to live in it for the next 15 weeks.

Top 5 things to remember now that I’m not in Thailand.

5. Don’t wait for an attendant to pump your gas.

4. Don’t buy XXL.

3. Don’t leave your keys in the ignition for safekeeping.

2. Don’t scoot someone’s else ride aside to make room to park your own.

1. Don’t drive on the left!

Counting Dong in Saigon

As usual, I started my trip with a few essentials, money and street food.

I generally enjoy walking about a city to learn its layout but Ho Chi Minh was an exception. The grime on the awning is indicative of the soot I had to wash off my exposed skin later. Luckily, the area I stayed in, district 7, wasn’t congested with scooters so a stroll to a convenience store or cart was fine. It also had lots of Korean goodies.

The Notre-Dame Basilica was closed for renovations but the post office and Independence Palace were open to visitors.

Independence Palace

View from Independence Palace.

While not terribly convenient, I couldn’t pass up a tour of the Củ Chi tunnels. It gets rather cramped and very dark. Our crawling about was rewarded with cassava root with crushed peanuts and tea, supposedly staples of the Vietcong.