Recently, our plans to travel to Dallas and stay in a real hotel with an elevator and room service and a pool and strangers everywhere were canceled so, we (my travel partner Mr. Parker and I) chose to drive to Bend to see what all the fuss is about – you know, Gorman Falls and all. Well, come to find out the Colorado Bend State Park is a very busy state park (like Enchanted Rock) and you really need reservations.
We enjoyed the Bend General Store (which has been around for more than a hundred years), saw some beautiful old farmhouses, mentally planned our trip back with kids and grandkids and saw a giant wasp nest on an antenna. Then we traveled back through San Saba and Goldthwaite. While driving along the Texas highways enjoying the wildflowers, it struck me – COVID-19 for the most part in Central Texas seems to be of no concern anymore! Most of the people we run into are vaccinated or have had the disease.
News flash! Special events are back on!
We had an already-packed picnic lunch, so in San Saba we stopped at Mill Pond Park and discovered a classic car show (a magnet for us.) The reason for the little show and shine was the San Jacinto Celebration Day. There were things we hadn’t seen in a year: crowds of people eating barbecue, children playing games and old folks visiting in front of the museum! By the way, San Saba has an amazingly displayed collection at the Mills County Historical Museum.
Earlier on our way to Bend, we had noticed an event at the Goldthwaite City Park. Mr. Parker thought it was a swap meet, so we were already planning to stop. Upon our return from San Saba and closer inspection, we realized that special events again are back! Goldthwaite was hosting its renowned Annual Barbecue and Goat Cook-Off. There were crafts booths and sunshine and crowds of people eating and shopping—oh the joy!
Keep in mind, we had left Comanche knowing it was the Comanche-wide Garage Day Sale and that a bull riding event was happening that evening at the Comanche Rodeo Arena.
A side note – On the way to Bend, we stopped at one particular historical marker (like we always do) and happened to notice these giant monsters in the next pasture. Not squatch, not the Loch Ness Monster. Ostriches! And they hung around the fence waiting to meet us. We were just as excited to see them as they were to see us! We took our trademark selfies with the ostriches and here comes a young man on an ATV. I’m sure he was used to big city gawkers but found us. As the owner of the ostrich farm, he stopped not to check our intentions, but to warn us about the pecking! We had a wonderful educational visit with the owner and discovered we had friends and associates in common.
Folks, it’s been a terrible, heartbreaking year of pandemic worries, illness and death. Prayers are answered in Texas that things are getting back to some kind of normal. And remember that heritage tourism events are back! Read your newspaper, mark your calendar and check them out!
Mills County Historical Museum
1119 Fisher St
Goldthwaite TX 76844