Waxing Gibbous Moon
Fort Worth Stockyards
The morning after P. S. I Love You's fun-eral service and the subsequent most pleasant gathering at Uno and Roadie's house, I moved on to the next phase of my journey. The first stop was Fort Worth and lunch at Joe T. Garcia's Mexican Restaurant near the Fort Worth Stockyards with Bearcat Mike. This restaurant is busy and famous and efficient with terrific food in an expansive garden setting. I arrived early, so I walked down the street to the Stockyards to see the sights. I have been there a few times before, so there were no big surprises, but I like the whole relaxed historical cowboy/cowgirl theme the town presents here. There are signs that big money has started to take it over, but I will probably keep coming back any time I am in the area - as long as they don't "Dallas" it up too much.
I have known Mike since the 3rd grade (1960!) so we always have a lot to talk about. Also in our class back then was a kid named Cosmo Lucchese, whose family was in the cowboy boot business. I haven't seen Cosmo since then, but I guess they are doing pretty well these days. Fort Worth is a big city, with all that entails, but I like it better than most. I have been to the Stockyards with Pat before, so I know she liked it. Also, there were hardly any flies.
My next visit was down the road in Cleburne with my beautiful, loving sister Diane (aka Dinesey) and her kind and generous husband Patt (aka King Safari). Other than to say it was great fun and all too brief, I will keep our conversations private, if not top secret. I never pass up a chance to see them if I can help it, though. They are the ones who introduced me to Glen Rose (awesome small town), Dinosaur Valley State Park (very cool dino tracks), and more importantly, the Billy the Kid Museum a little further down the road in Hico, Texas.
The museum in Hico is a kick in the pants. Not because it is so grandiose or anything approaching that description. What makes it giddy and remarkable is its alternative theory about the death of Billy the Kid. According to the museum's curator, the loquacious and pert Ms. Sue Land, Billy did not die at age 21 from Pat Garrett's gunshot to his chest. Billy actually escaped Fort Sumner and fled to Hico, where he changed his name to Brushy Bill Roberts and lived there undercover (for the most part) until 1950. If you want to know more about this fantastic story, I will leave that up to you and Dr. Googlie. Either that or go to the Hico museum and ask Sue about it yourself. I recommend it!
Pro tip: if you are traveling from Fort Worth to Austin, steer clear of the I-35 nonsense and follow the backroads through the eclectic small towns that offer authentic old school Texas vibes, great food, and glimpses (true or not) into Old West history you won't find anywhere else. Do it soon, before they Dallas it all up.
Peace, Love, and Long Live Brushy Bill,