In 2010 The Bike Hermit took his first bike jaunt in Texas. Titled Texas Buckaroos, his adventure is well chronicled on crazyguyonabike.com. Since then, I have heard about his trip pretty much Every Single Day; how amazing this part of Texas is, how friendly the people are, how we need to move to Texas, how Boise is actually hotter and colder than Alpine – you name it, I’ve heard it. Being who I am, my initial reaction was there is no way I am moving to Texas. Those who know me know that I tend to balk when others rave about certain places or things – yes even when The Bike Hermit is the one doing the raving :). After a few years of his pushing Texas I finally let the brain crack open and began to soften to the idea of at least going for a visit. It took a few years to line up all the stars but suddenly the idea was becoming a reality. Originally we planned to go in early 2015 but with everything slipping into place we decided we’d planned enough and we’d just go for it. Again, to those who know us, this should come a no surprise.
From the start of our Texas Bike Ride I vowed to have no agenda, no expectations and to allow each and every day unfold of it’s own accord. A little self congratulations are in order as I think I came pretty darn close to achieving that goal. (okay there may have been a few moments and there were some very choice words thrown around on a particularly nasty section of Glenn Springs Road in Big Bend National Park) But as always when riding, it got better.
Everyone approaches bike touring in their own way. We all have our little rituals and habits. One of mine is to make up songs as I ride. My theme usually involves what ever I see or experience on the the ride. During our 3 weeks in Texas I wrote a great little riding ditty. My singing is totally restricted to riding my bike with Jim either way out in front or somewhere behind me. I can carry a perfect tune, as long as no one is listening. Here are the words: (the tune is The Heart of Saturday Night by Tom Waits)
Little Yellow Flowers growing by the road, tucked in with the cactus and a flowering yucca plant too.
Bike riding in Texas, having a marvelous time.
Got the wind at my back, the sun in the sky, riding along with my favorite guy.
That’s why I like Texas, have a wonderful time
So, what do I think of Texas? I will answer that with, we are busy planning the next trip. As the standard response from a certain someone. “Just listen to the Bike Hermit and all will be fine.” West Texas is a country unto itself. I am a lover of wide open spaces and certainly got my fill of beautiful, quiet, rugged country.
Are we moving to Texas? Well that move, if ever, is certainly a longs ways off. I look forward to doing quite a bit more Texas bike pedaling and have many more places to explore. The isolated beauty, while amazing to visit, may become a bit tarnished if I were to experience it day in and day out.
You can never go back – a mantra of mine for sure. I believe one will never have the same experience twice so when we do go back, I will once again embrace the adventure with no expectations and just look forward to enjoying the beauty Texas has to offer. Have a wonderful time.