It has been very hard to post for the past few days, between not having access to a computer, much less the internet, and a visitor I have had for a couple of days (not complaining about that). Bill arrived in Navasota, our planned meeting place, a day early. So I invited him to dinner in La Grange on Monday night. But, more about that later.
April 9 dawned much nicer than the days before, even though it was cold. We left Bastrop anticipating a nice ride into LaGrange. The first 15 miles of our route took us through Bastrop State Park. There was no traffic and quiet roads, but very steep hills, one reported to be about 15%. Most of us had to walk that one. The SAG was waiting for us at the exit to the park.
The rest of the day was uneventful, except for the beautiful wildflowers. It seemed that around every curve there was yet another field of Bluebells, Primroses, Thistles and other that I could not name.On this day, I also saw my first Texas oil well on this trip, and some live oaks with Spanish moss. The live oaks thrive in this part of the state.
We arrived in LaGrange in time for lunch. I stopped at the courthouse square and ask a man where we could find the best lunch in town. He answered, “My house, but it is not open today.” So we opted for Frank’s place, reminiscent of the old Frank’s or Brook’s in Metter. Several of us chose big, juicy hamburgers and the best onion rings in Texas!
It was at Frank’s place that we found out why LaGrange is famous. Does the name Sheriff Jim Flournoy ring a bell? How about the “Chicken Ranch”? If you are still not sure, see this article.http://www.tsha.utexas.edu/handbook/online/articles/CC/ysc1.html
So here is Sheriff Jim. Wonder if the “Yard Eggs” came from descendants of the “Chicken Ranch” chickens?
After lunch, Ramsay, Hille and I decided to explore the town. The most impressive building in town is the courthouse, built in 1891 for $96,000. For more information on its history, see http://www.texasescapes.com/TexasCourthouses/FayetteCounty/FayetteCountyCourthouse.htm
As we entered the building and walked around the lobby and inside courtyard, somehow I could feel Ogden Doremus’s spirit there. Then I realized that it was the time of his funeral in Metter. Music was playing in the background as allowed myself to relive some of the ways in which he and Carol had touched my life since 1974, and the lives of so many other people. It is amazing how feelings come over us sometimes. We just have to take the time to understand them.
The final site we visited in LaGrange was the old jail, except for the size, not entirely unlike my memories of the old jail in Metter. While it is now a visitor’s center, some of the old cells and other features have been preserved.
When we left the jail, we found our way back to the motel, where Bill was waiting for me. It was so good to see him. He experienced our evening meal, along with several other guests. One was a vet who gave us a lesson on the various kinds of cows in Texas. Very informative.
After dinner, I told Bill goodbye, temporarily because he would be waiting for me the next day in Navasota.