Time, as always, is pressing me to be brief. It’s my last night in El Portal. There’s still much to be done before calling it a day to rise to an early morning of lots of driving without coffee (day 7 of being coffee free! it started with being sick and now I’m just seeing how far I can take it…). But I want to share a bit about Dallas before it gets lost in the shuffle of new and exciting experiences of my everyday life.
My visit to Dallas was a fun trip. It was pretty low-key overall, which was what I was going for. I flew in on a Monday. I saw Yosemite Valley from the plane, ate free peanuts, and arrived an hour late due to a thunderstorm that required re-routing the last leg of my flight. But I arrived to a Julie and a Steph and a latte and a late night with Mom and the fish tank. A true harbinger of what to expect for the next week. Mom and I picked up Craig from the airport the next evening and he spent the week with me, with both of us flying out on Monday to spend the night in Sacramento to get a little pre-Tuolumne supply shopping in.
It was a week of… espresso (lattes, americanos, affogatos, frappuccinos), tex-mex (CM tortillas and tamales, Chito’s with their delicious hot salsa, homemade enchiladas with local ingredients, Freebirds burritos), asian food (homemade eggroll night, Ra happy hour sushi), gelato (affogatos almost every day), touring my old stomping grounds (Pecan Grove Cemetery, downtown McKinney, UNT campus and downtown Denton, Northpark Mall), visiting with family (group-participation pizza-making on Mother’s Day, fishing at Lake Tawakoni with my brother, the surprise early return home of my nephew for the summer; we were sad not to see UJ, but excited at the prospect of a visit from him this summer) and friends (sleepover with Julie, Steph, and Spartacus, many shenanigans with the first two, and evening coffee/tea with Megan), some necessary drudgery (going through paperwork and boxes at Mom’s with trips to Goodwill and Half-Price Books and the dumpster), and, of course, playing naturalists (coyote sighting in the city, ladder-back and red-bellied woodpeckers in the cemetery, nutrias, many unknown flowers and butterflies, scissor-tailed flycatchers, barn swallows, northern cardinals, baffling raptors, oh-so-many common and great-tailed grackles). Oh, and let’s not forget Craig’s encounter with a Texas bull (not mechanical, but I think it was close enough).
I actually didn’t take that many pictures, but I did catch a few really awesome moments…