Freedom and Liberty

Freedom and Liberty
I travel in Freedom but sleep in the security of Liberty (not only on the road, but in this amazing country of ours)

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Thinking Sites Along the Way

Location: Matagorda Bay Nature Park and RV Campground; Matagorda, Texas

Stop #9
It was a short tow of only 120 miles but I needed to stretch it out to about a three hour trip so I wouldn't show up to early here at Matagorda. I was also watching the weather since storms were passing through the area and I knew I may have to slow down or speed up. The roads were in great shape so I just locked in cruise control at 55 mph and took my time. It was a very easy drive with the roads mostly straight and flat. I wished it had been a clearer day since it was a very dense overcast sky with misting rain off and on. The temperature was in the low sixties, perfect for window down, cruising weather. It was one of those days where the traffic was light and I could let my mind wander. It was a good thinking drive. 

A couple of things along the way got me to thinking. One was an isolated shade tree in the middle of a freshly plowed field.

It got me to thinking about how it got there, who planted it, how old was it, how many men stopped under it for their noon meal, how many wives or girlfriends met their men there for a picnic or to bring them fresh cold water. I imagined a story about the many generations of men and women who worked this land. I thought of the first man who cleared the land and planted the first crop. With that crop, a sapling grew. Every time he passed it he told himself to cut it down before it got bigger. But, instead, he let it grow. Now, seventy five years later, his great great grandson is working in the same field in the middle of a very hot summer. The sun is beating down with barely a breath of breeze. Every step brings a puff of dust from underfoot. On towards noon he would be soaking wet with sweat and dusty from head to toe. As he reaches for the lukewarm water jug in the tractor he glaces towards the old shade tree and there she is; his wife of many years, standing under the tree with a fresh jug of iced cold water. It was as if she read his mind and knew he needed a break. As he walked towards her, he sensed he wasn't alone. Alongside him were three other men walking towards their wives. While he was kissing her and reaching for the water, the rest of the people faded away leaving only him and her.

The land around the tree looked to be freshly plowed, so I felt good in knowing that at least one more generation was enjoying the tree. But as I drove on by, I wondered how many more future generations the tree would provide shade for such loving acts.

On down the road, I saw another interesting sight. 
I saw the flags first. The American and Texas flags were flapping in the wind and caught my attention from about a mile away. 

As I got closer I noticed the building was actually a church, but something looked odd about it. All of the windows were shuttered. Thinking about it, shutters on a church seems rare. And for them to be closed seemed ever more rare. It told me it wasn't used that often. Maybe it was part of a chain of churches using a circuit preacher. That is still done in parts of Louisiana so maybe it's here too. Also, the church was not facing the roadway and it had no parking lot, that was odd. Then I noticed the graves surrounding the church-house. Now roadside graveyards are not unusual for these parts of Texas and most of the south, but these were different. From what I could tell as I whizzed by, almost all of the graves had new headstones. What could have happened here? Was there a family tragedy that claimed many family members at the same time? Perhaps the land had changed ownership and the new owners wanted to establish a family graveyard. I've traveled a lot of roads around this country from border to border and coast to coast, but I've never seen a set up like this.

It is still rainy, chilly and foggy here so no explorations today. There are a couple of things I came here to see and I hope the weather clears out of here tomorrow since that is my last day here. The slow moving cold front is supposed to pass on out into the gulf late tomorrow. We will see.

My campsite here at Matagorda
Ya'll take care of each other. I'll Cya down the road. 


  1. Some more of my old stomping grounds. I would drive down there to Riverbend boat ramp and launch into the Colorado River. Then run over into West Matagorda Bay for shrimp catching. Have fun and thanks for bringing back the memories.

    1. I'm glad it brought up memories for you Barney. The next post will have more pictures from around Matagorda. Be safe out there on the border.

  2. Thanks for your blog Darrell, I live in N. Texas and am especially enjoying your travels and photos. I was wondering, how far were you from Sutherland Springs when you passed the church? It seems to me it is near that part of Texas, where the church shooting occurred and killed 26 (in 2017). I may be way off base however. The info about the shooting is here:

    1. Hello Jools. I remember your comments over the years. I hope you're doing well. I hadn't thought about the church shooting but it's not the church. The church in my picture is 130 miles, as the crow flies, from Sutherland Springs. It appears the church in my picture will remain a mystery and float around in my silent echoes. I'm glad you're enjoying the blog. If I remember right, you were hoping to do a little traveling yourself. Take care.