The Longdogs

The Longdogs
Harley takes his role as navigator seriously!

A Relaxing Day at Lake Pointe RV Resort, Canyon Lake TX

This morning the Traveling Longdogs and I went for a walk around the park while it was still cool. The head housekeeper was busy in the recreation hall cleaning.  They have a TV viewing room, a library, and restrooms with showers.  There is also a room with a coded lock on it for over 18 year -olds which has a couple of pool tables and some other things.  At the other end of the building is a room with a pool table and ping pong table for the 17 and under crowd.

Next was the playground which has a cute little fort and another little play building all for the under 12 year old crowd.  The doxies complained loudly when they saw the "No Pets Allowed" sign at the front of the park.

They pointed out that it was hardly fair when you take a close look at who was using the playground when we walked by.

This is the laundry room.  There's quite a porch around it so it isn't quite as large as it appears.

We walked back to the RV so Willy, Harley, and Gretchen could get a nap in while I went up to the office to see what kind of equipment they might have to check out.  This is the family pool which is a junior olympic size and quite nice.  You can see the lake out in the background.

The fenced area up in the trees is the adult pool which you will see in a minute.

This is the adult pool up by the office.  It is right next to a huge deck around the office and lounge area.

 I think these deer were on their way down to the lake.  Or they may have been planning to get in a little shuffleboard.

This is the office and lounge area.  There is a fireplace which may get used much later in the year.

The lower deck is very pretty with another deck beyond that looks over the open area down to the lake.

Nice way of warning people not to hit their heads on the "Headache Tree".

I got another cup of coffee in the office and sat out on a porch swing enjoying the day.

There is a small fountain in front of the office parking lot.  A lot of people have golf carts around here but it really isn't far to walk.

Someone also built a small "Memorial Garden" up near the gate.  As you can see, there is a high fence so this is one place the deer are not welcome.

On the way back to the RV, I walked past another building which is available for large parties.  You can see a volleyball court in front and there are also horseshoe pits.

After my coffee, I went back and hung some pictures in the RV, did a little cleanup and then went for a swim in that lovely pool.  95 degrees didn't seem like much when swimming in a nice pool.

Some Views of the Park--Lake Pointe RV Resort

I'm pretty happy with the site I picked out.  There is shade quite a bit of the time which is important since the temps are in the mid 90s or higher.  It was pretty nice sitting out under the trees this morning with my coffee because there was a little breeze.  We went for a walk all over the park first thing while it was cool.

I had my coffee and kindle after we got back and the Traveling Longdogs were enjoying their play area.  Fortunately, they are fastinated by the deer and don't bark at them.  It's usually a staring contest on both sides.

This spot has more of a lake view but there is a 3 foot drop right behind him.  I think the park is about half full right now but there isn't anybody home at quite of few of them.  I expect they will show up for the weekend.

But it's not like nobody is around.  I saw one buck with about 9 points on his rack.  They are very tame.  I think that must be some kind of a salt or food block; I've seen several around the park.  I guess you can buy feed at the office too (or bring your own in if you like).  I've heard that dog food is actually more nutritious for them than deer corn.  They won't be getting any of the Traveling Longdogs special food though.

Are you following me lady???  There is a number of paths between the resort developed area and the lake.

The "town" closest to the park is Hancock and there are several restaurants, coffee shops, Dollar Store, etc.  The closest real town is Sattler which is five miles away.  They have real grocery store which used to be a Super S but is now a Lowe's Market.  Prices weren't too bad and they have about anything you could want.  There is also a great Ace Hardware store which is really well stocked.  They even carry quite a few RV items.  I found several items that I haven't been able to find elsewhere.  I also saw an RV repair place, VFW (open to the public sign), several restaurants and a bakery, a feedstore, and numerous other business places that make it a worthwhile trip.  

On the Road Again, So Happy to be On the Road Again

Picked up the RV from storage yesterday afternoon, loaded up this morning and hit the road.  We didn't go far but the Traveling Longdogs and I are so happy to be out in the RV.  I called on a whim last week to see if La Pointe RV Resort might have any openings--didn't expect to get a yes because the COE campgrounds are all full.  The trick is that they don't take reservations here.  It's a membership park but they don't take reservations from members either.  They honor Passport America and Escapees as well as a couple of others.  Sooooo, I called again yesterday to see if they still had openings, got another yes, and went to pick up the RV.  I came early in the week because I figured most people would come later.  School started in Texas this week.   Here we are tooling down the road to Canyon Lake.

Even though school is on, the toobers are still doing business.  It will be hot here for quite a while.  And, no, those are not rainclouds.  There is no rain around here and we could use it.

Sometimes it's "toobs" sometimes it's "tubes" but then you are liable to get "haus" instead of "house".  Anyway, the toobs are the round donut floats that were originally from tires but are now usually plastic inflatables.

Okay, I'm here and this is the only picture you are getting tonight.  I took it out the back window of the 5th wheel.  Nice, huh?  See the deer?  I've seen at least 10 or 15 including a mother with two fawns and several guys with racks.  Of course, these deer aren't a whole lot bigger than my youngest son's mastiffs.

Things are all set up or stowed away depending on the item and I'm off to bed now.  I'll be back with more pictures.

A Date with Bussey's Flea Market in San Antonio

We decided to check out the Flea Market today.  It's been awhile since we wandered through and the temperature is down under a 100 degrees so today sounded like a good day to do that.  Technically Bussey's Flea Market is in Schertz not San Antonio but Schertz is right on the northeast corner of San Antonio.

You'll see the the flea market sign right off of IH-35 as you head north to Austin.

When you get even closer, you'll see the Texas size armadillo.  See, they are claiming San Antonio too.

The Flea Market itself is free but they do charge you $1.00 for parking.  Pretty cheap for an afternoon's entertainment and you never know what you will find.

There is some shade as most of the flea market has covers over the walkway.  It was actually a bit more crowded than it looks here.

This booth has all kinds of frou-frou to pick through.

But you never know what you will find.

Incense anyone?  How about some Mexican pottery?

You can grab a bite to eat from this cantina or one of the other booths selling sodas or ice cream.

These vendors put up their own canopies.  Military items on the left, lampshades and homemade craft items on the right.  How about some Legos by the pound?

There's lots more to see.  The garage style booths are at the front and more permanent booths fill up the rest of the area.  There's a tool and hardware store.  Also a rug store.  How about some antiques?  Maybe some kitchenware.  Come and while away an afternoon.

And what do the longdogs do while we are at the flea market....well, they nap of course but you'll find it hard to catch them at it.

Pimping Up the Motorcycle

Okay, now that I have your attention.....not much has been going on around here this past week.  DH likes to putter around with his motorcycles when he's bored.  So this week he built a custom backrest for his Kawasaki.

Getting the curve just right and fastening the backrest.

Checking out the pad from one of his many, many, many bags.  All these bags and racks and backrests have to work together you know just in case he sets off on that round the world tour, or maybe around the U.S., or even around Texas.

Here it is all painted up.  See what I mean about all the bags??

We wouldn't want it to be too let's add some decals.

Whatever turns your my case, it is the RV going on the road!

Unwelcome Nighttime Intruders

Usually nights around home are pretty quiet, too quiet sometimes, okay, boring even....  Every once in a while something happens to upset that pattern.  DH and I were watching TV.  Normally that means that at least two of the Traveling Longdogs are on my lap, sometimes all three.  Gretchen has been spending a lot of the evenings since our last trip outside keeping an eye on her yard.  Even the boys have been out.  Of course, that could be because the days have been in the 100's for quite some time now.

It was getting later, about 10:30PM.  And then this horrible racket started.  First I thought it was the neighbors dogs behind us going crazy.  That occasionally happens but not enough to drive us nuts.  Oh, no!  It was my dogs making the racket!   How embarrassing!  I realized that all three of them were outside so I flew out and called them.  Nothing.....   Called them again....  I could see them down at the back of the yard along the fence by the bushes.  Called again....  Finally, I saw Willy take a few steps towards me before he turned around.   Knowing there was no way I could corral all three of them, I headed back in the house for the "Treat Jar".  Okay, I know, blatant bribery.   I stood on the patio and shook it.  Shook it again harder while calling them.  Finally, Willy headed toward me then Harley succumbed to the lure of the treats.  They followed me into the house and I quickly shut the inside door so they couldn't escape back through the doggy door.   Want to see what was causing all the commotion?

That just left Gretchen.  She  is a determined yard protector but she usually doesn't bark that much.  She just stands guard to make sure nothing is going on that shouldn't be going on.  She didn't know what to make of this intruder.  I mean, the squirrels run.  It's a game with them.  She is very careful not to catch them.  But this guy just sat there.  Dave finally went down and got her.

I sure hope this little guy picks someone else's fence to hang out on.

Hotter Than Heck

Well, it's a tad warm here in Texas but then it is summer and will be for another 6 weeks or so.  I'd still rather be warm than cold so I guess that is just fine.  This morning was actually not bad at all, a little breeze and it didn't hit a hundred until after noon and the humidity is only 38%.  The grass is a little brittle in the back yard; it could definitely use a nice rain.  That probably won't happen so I hauled the hose around and watered the crepe myrtles and small oak tree last night and this morning.  The dogs are enjoying their backyard and being able to dash in and out the doggy door whenever they feel like it.  But then they don't get those walks like they do when they are traveling in the RV.  It's a trade-off I guess.  If you have been keeping up with my friends traveling in Alaska, you will know that they are already seeing signs of autumn.  Don't worry ladies, it will still be plenty warm enough to wear your shorts when you hit the bottom of the lower 48 in September.

Last Night on the Road--Gulf Coast RV Resort, Beaumont TX

We had an uneventful and pleasant trip from New Orleans to Beaumont.  One thing I wanted to mention was about the roads in Louisiana.  At least in the south part of the state, they are rough even on I-10 and I-12 (the cut-off if you don't circle down through New Orleans).  Last year when we stayed on I-10 through New Orleans, I thought we were going to be shaken to pieces on the concrete panels.  This year, a big improvement, the road was much, much smoother.  We headed back to the Gulf Coast RV Resort, another Passport America park.

Although not as fancy as Ponchartrain Landing in New Orleans, it is still very nice.  They have a great playground...

individual restrooms with shower...

a nice pool, office and small store, a small library, and the best part, a free serve yourself breakfast with waffles, cereal, bagels, juice, and coffee.  (No, the kids were not with us--this is a picture from our last visit).

And then home, to deal with replacing the tire, piled up mail, laundry, unloading and cleaning the RV, and 100 degree heat.  Steve flies home in the morning.  Ah, I'd rather be on the road.

"The Big Easy", New Orleans LA

I checked in with the office and paid up for my two nights at Pontchartrain Landing (remember we arrived after the office closed at 5:00PM) after we got up.  Then we took the doxies for a stroll around the park.  We didn't go to the dog park since several big boys were in there playing and the Traveling Longdogs have a nervous nelly mom but they enjoyed the walk just as much.  Then Steve and I headed down to the French Quarter.  On the way, we passed this above ground cemetery but didn't stop since we visited them another time.  If you haven't been to one, it is interesting.

We used the GPS just to make it easy but it's only a few miles from the RV park to the French Quarter.  There was some construction going on on a few of the roads near the Quarter.  See the barriers?

We parked in the parking lot near the Jax Brewery since the F250 is a big boy.  The streets are pretty crowded and finding on street parking is pretty hard even for smaller cars so be prepared for the parking lot shock.

There were also quite a few buildings being renovated here and there.  See the one on the left with the windows out?

You can learn a lot about the history of New Orleans if you just keep your eyes open.  As you can see in this sign, it is very old.

A hundred years later, the Steamer "New Orleans" made it to the city by coming down the Ohio and Mississippi rivers which spurred further growth of the city.

So, how do you get around in the city these days?  Well, if you are a resident, you might ride around on your three wheeler.

If you are a visitor, you might ride around in a pedicab.

You can also ride around in a mule drawn carriage.  Or, like us, you can park your vehicle and walk around.  Be sure to wear comfortable shoes because there is a lot to see so you will do a lot of walking.

The first place we headed after arriving was to the French Market district.

We were headed to the building on the right with the green striped awning......

Ah, yes, you guessed it.  We were on our way to Cafe du Monde for cafe au lait and beignets.  The Original Cafe Du Monde Coffee Stand was established in 1862. The Cafe is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It closes only on Christmas Day and on the day an occasional Hurricane passes too close to New Orleans.  The Original Cafe Du Monde is a traditional coffee shop. Its menu consists of dark roasted Coffee and Chicory, Beignets, White and Chocolate Milk, and fresh squeezed Orange Juice. The coffee is served Black or Au Lait. Au Lait means that it is mixed half and half with hot milk. Beignets are square French -style doughnuts, lavishly covered with powdered sugar. In 1988 Iced Coffee was introduced to the cafe. Soft drinks also made their debut that year.  The coffee is very strong so I recommend the cafe au lait which I can drink without sugar IF I have beignets.  Otherwise, you will probably want sugar too.  A visit here is one you won't want to miss as part of your New Orleans experience.

If you walk around the back side of the Cafe du Monde, you can see the beignets being made.  The dough passes under a roller to flatten it and then a cutter cuts it into squares about 2" by 2".  The man is lifting up the individual pieces and......

tossing them in the deep fat fryer right behind him without even looking!

You see art everywhere.

There are some newer buildings.

We walked up on the riverfront.  There were several large ocean going vessels.  There is a ferry that crosses the river along here.

And there is also a riverboat that you can take tours on.  I think they even do dinner.

We found this New Orleans Jazz National Historic Park just behind the French Market and went over to take a look but it is closed on Mondays.  Darn!

There are some benches in this area along with some more art and even free Internet.

I meant to go around to the other side of this little pocket park to see who this statue is but it's interesting because it's a woman leading the charge.

This is the Market Cafe.  We ate there last year and the kids got their first taste of alligator--tastes like chicken according to them.  They liked it better than their real chicken.  I had a muffallato sandwich which was good but don't order a whole one because it is the size of a dinner plate.  They cut it in quarters.

Then we made it to the actual French Market building.

where it was National Farmers Market week although we didn't see any demos going on and there is always music somewhere in the Quarter.

There are some fresh vegetables and other food items but you'll see more counters with food for sale and all kinds of tourist items for sale from sunglasses to crafts.

There are all kinds of shops and tourist haunts in the part of the Quarter.

You never know what you might see when you look in the door.

You can stop in this store and.....

get some Cafe du Monde coffee to brew at home and maybe some mix to make some beignets.

I enjoy looking at all of the buildings.  Most of them are very old.  Some are in good shape and some are not.  Bourbon Street is colorful at night but a little seedy and dirty in the daylight.  You just have to take it all in stride and enjoy it for what it is.  As you drive around you will see plenty of houses and other buildings that look just about like they did after Katrina rolled through while next door is rebuilt.

This is the beautiful cathedral from the park in front of it.  Be sure to take a look inside.

One of the things I like best about New Orleans are the wrought iron balconies and the plants and flowers on them.  They hide a lot in some cases.  Also, if you get a chance to peek into some of the apartment areas; most of them have interior courtyards like little parks.

Some of the buildings are very fresh and clean looking like this small hotel.

We had lunch at Coop's Place.  I know, doesn't look like much but it is extremely popular with the locals.  My DIL Helen found out about it from a local when she and Steve were here for a conference a year or two ago.  A Decatur Street staple since 1983, Coop's Place is the place to go for a true taste of New Orleans at down home prices.  Coop's was named after the owner's bulldog.  Coop wasn't here when we had lunch but we got to meet him last year.  The place is a bar, kind of a dive, but the food is GREAT.  The kitchen is out back behind those doors, actually in another building.  They have an outdoor cooker in the open area between buildings.

Sock Monkey tried to get in on Steve's Abita, a local beer.

Steve had the Coop's Taste Plate --  A cup of Seafood Gumbo, Shrimp Creole, Cajun Fried Chicken, Red Beans & Rice with Sausage, and Rabbit & Sausage Jambalaya.  I had a, okay, you can see above, I had the Coop's Burger.  Both were delicious.

By the time we finished our early lunch, the inside which is not large was full and a line was beginning to form.  Sometimes the line is half a block long so go early.

There is something to see wherever you look.  Lots of artists booths.  Some of the art is good and some is good in the eyes of the artist.  I know, everyone is a critic.

You really need several days to see everything.  Alas, we had only one day but we enjoyed it!    Back to the RV park to relax, a walk for the doxies, some time in the pool to cool down, definitely the hot tub after it cools down.  I thought it was humid in Florida but it was unbelievable here.  They have had so much rain.  It looked like a storm was coming in with lots of lightning and thunder so we got out of the hot tub but the storm blew on through without any rain and it sure felt better after.