Texas

It’s great to be back in Texas. We drove in a different way this time via Arkansas and were happy to pass through Hope (the birthplace of Bill Clinton) before fueling up alongside the highway in Texarcana. And speaking of hope, some of us were hoping  that Bill might be outside waving in his front yard but alas, we were denied.

I was expecting the Texas/Arkansas border to be somewhat magical as I had been listening to REM’s “Texarcana” in anticipation the day before:

40, 000 stars in the evening

Look at them fall from the sky

40, 000 reasons for living

40, 000 tears in your eye

Perhaps it’s different at night. It’s hard to see those 40, 000 stars in the daytime.  I guess that only happens at the Junos.

They did have friendly clerks at the post office so we were able to send off some mail order and a couple of Elvis postcards picked up at a gas station in Memphis.

Normally there is a big “Welcome to Texas “ sign when you cross into Texas. (Never seen one crossing into Iowa. That would be an obvious prank. Maybe I’ll tweet Ashton Kutcher with the suggestion) By the way, I want to be the first to tell you about a new social networking site. Twitter. I think it’s going to be big.

New state signs are always something to look forward to. Especially when you’ve been driving all day. Mile after mile. State after state…

Welcome signs make us feel like we are making progress. Moving forward. Fresh pastures. Greener grass. Turning over a new leaf. Smiling faces to sing to… Maybe road construction interfered with Rebecca’s #1 hobby of taking pictures of state welcome signs as we weren’t able to spot one. What’s a girl to do? So the next two days we assumed we were in Texas. The Don’t Mess With Texas signs along the highway should have been our first clue but we didn’t know for sure until we drove by the Alamo on our way to Casbeers in San Antonio.

We’ve played Casbeers many times over the years at their old location but we haven’t been to Texas in a while.  In the meantime they’ve set up shop in a new location. And what an awesome location it is!  It’s an old church in an historic neighbourhood not too far from the Alamo. The restaurant is downstairs and is still serving those tasty enchilada’s, with the concert area being upstairs in the church. Very rustic and beautiful. Apparently the stained glass was made in Europe, shipped to Pennsylvania and brought by train to San Antonio in 1912. And here we are looking at it in March of 2009!

Rebecca and Chris hopped on the shuttle to check out the historical majesty that is the Alamo. The rest of us chilled out and chatted with people we hadn’t seen for a while. Elli got up and sang some songs. We did too. Amazing acoustics. It’s always special playing in a church. So many things to reflect upon.  Thinking and wondering about all that’s happened within those walls over the years: Weddings. Funerals. Christmas eve’s. Easter mornings. Communions and baptisms. Drooping eyelids and crying babies. And tonight? Let’s turn it over to our celebrity MC Art Garfunkel:

“San Antonio. You are in for a treat. For one night only. The sweet, sweet tones of the Clumsy Lovers.  But first, a poem I wrote yesterday:

O Kathryn, I kissed you goodbye.

You were wearing a white cotton dress with pale
pink satin.
You were in the corner of the limousine, thirty
minutes ago.

Outside the car, on the sidewalk, it was 4:40,
Saturday afternoon.
Gorgeous, radiant sunshine fell on daddy and me.

It was the very middle of May.

How you delighted me all day long…You were
like a brook. And like a running mountain
brook you caught and reflected the
dazzling light.

You arrived cautious and curious. You had been
shopping for smells, and you bought a bubble-gum-
smelling eraser, a rootbeer lip gloss brush, a bottle
of cologne.

—Do you play chess? you said in the second minute.

At The Empire State, when we hit the big view at
the top—you took it in your own time. You were
Loch Lomond.

You like: typewriters, jigsaw puzzles, chocolate,
pianos, grape soda, three in a phone booth, Pez,
playgrounds and limousines. And most of all, it
seemed, was playgrounds—the carriage ride we
took to the carousel (where you rode the inside
horse) charmed your daddy and me

but the playground was the cat’s whiskers
to you. I tried to sign your nose…Kathryn,
thank you so much for giving me

Outside, daddy was saying “She’ll never be five
again.”

So my goodbye kiss is to the beautiful wake you
leave behind your beautiful course Kathryn.

the tribute of the current to the source

And now, as promised. The Clumsy Lovers!

Great to see Barb and Steve and all of our sweet San Antonio friends again.

It’s only an hour away so tomorrow we’ll wake up in Austin! Hope we didn’t miss South by Southwest….

Waking up in Austin is always cool. Assuming you have A.C. in the hotel room.  Such an awesome music town by the way.  Half the band got up early and drove downtown to check out the sights. The other half arose a while later and walked alongside the highway near the airport looking for signs of civilization. The hot Texas sun and the nervous pace made for a calorie neutral day and to top it off we weren’t mowed down by speeding traffic on our quest to locate a store to furnish us with money orders to pony express to various people waiting in various locations with their palms up.

We all headed downtown around dinnertime. Unloaded in the back alley and went off looking for parking. (this exciting account can be found on our Twitter page . Search clumsylovers. Our Twitter page is pretty lame so far but it’s not too far behind Larry Kings in terms of content…We’ll post lots of fun and mundane stuff when we are on the road next assuming Twitter is still around in a few weeks. Excuse me for a sec. I’ll be right back. I need to Ask Jeeves directions to Vancouver from Austin Texas:)

We eventually found parking but were disappointed to not see Lance Armstrong zipping by on his bike in search of Kate Hudson or the Magnolia Café or maybe an unprecedented 8th Tour de France victory…Did see a cute girl on a Bianchi though…

Played outside on the balcony tonight. Big beautiful moon. Perfect weather. Excellent people in abundance. Music blaring from everywhere in every direction on the streets surrounding. What more can you ask for to wrap up three weeks on the road?

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