In March we came to Texas during Betsie and Eli’s spring break as the Texas Rodeo has become sort of a tradition. It was never on my list to go to, but I have to say once you go, you want to keep coming back year after year. It is incredibly fun and the artist’s they bring in for concerts are amazing! This past year there seemed to be many vendors from Fredericksburg, Texas and I have also read the how cute of a town this was. Since it was not out of the way, we decided to make a stop. Plus, we used to live in Fredericksburg, Virginia so it seemed fitting to stop in Fredericksburg, Texas.
However, true to our quote on our home page, Will wanted to “explore” about 12 miles outside of Fredericksburg in Willow City. For those of you who know Will, know he loves bbq and brisket. Imagine when he found there is a place called Rabke’s Table Ready Meats. Thinking it was a “storefront” and of course there must be some relation off we went. Imagine driving down a two lane country road for 12 miles and then turning down a very long driveway for another 6 miles passing ranch after ranch with signs saying “loose cattle ahead” until we hit the driveway of the warehouse and the Rabke’s 103 year old house! Will was the only one to get out and walk up to “see” if there was anything worth getting out of the car for. Unfortunately, there was not. But, he did meet Linda Rabke, who’s husband, Stanley was out in the field working his way back in for lunch and she shared a few pieces of history with Will. It wasn’t the butcher shop Will was thinking, but nonetheless, it will not be the only off beaten adventure we take on this trip.
From there we drove back into Fredericksburg, Texas and it was the cutest town! There was not enough time for us to explore everything and I certainly want to come back one day. Part of the town reminded me of Yountville, in California where Will and I celebrated our 20th anniversary two years ago. We parked at the visitor center as it had the biggest parking lot for our RV. Will held office hours and took a few calls, while the kids and I went out to lunch and walked around a little. Before coming back to the car, the kids got ice cream they could have later in the day on our three and a half hour drive to our overnight stop in West Texas. Anna Cate was the only one to try a local favorite, homemade Fredericksburg Peach and it was delicious and fresh!
This was the first drive where the landscape started to change, as well as, the amount of wildlife freely roaming around. We had to be very watchful as there were so many deer. Knowing we were going to be getting to our campsite later again, I prepped dinner on the road again. While I was doing this, Anna Cate was napping, Eli was reading and Betsie was Will’s co-pilot. She spotted a deer on the other side of the road and pointed it out to Will, right when it decided to run….in our direction. When I say, we came extremely close to having a hood ornament, I mean the deer was less than ten yards from the front of the RV. Praise Jesus we did not hit it AND no one was behind us when Will hit the brakes, hard! My potatoes went flying!
Another aspect of our trip we always have to be conscious of is the weather, both where we are and where we are going. Will read and watched many videos on our particular RV to understand as much as he could before we left and one thing he wanted me to keep reminding him of is the wind speed. We are not to drive with winds over 20mph. As we were driving to West Texas, to make an overnight stop in Fort Stockton, there was a severe thunderstorm in Fort Stockton. I was watching it closely on an app other RVers have recommended called Hi-Def Radar. It was extremely helpful and let me watch the wind speed as we were traveling. Luckily we never hit rain, but the West Texas winds are a different story!
Did I mention I love that I can prep dinner on the road (and I probably will say it a thousand times!). It truly makes for a calmer arrival and set up. We arrived around 7:15 pm and it was the first time we could not eat outside as the winds were strong! Every RV park/resort we check in to they give you a site map and rules of the land. On our sheet it said in bold red letters, WARNING- WEST TEXAS WIND– The wind in West Texas can change in minutes from a gentle breeze to gale strength. They were not lying!!!!
Our Bacon Ranch Chicken with Red Potatoes cooked in foil packets on the grill were ready in no time! As we were eating we saw the most beautiful sunset AND a rainbow! We certainly felt the presence of God all around us.
Seeing as it was a later evening for us and we wanted to try and have an earlier departure we didn’t stay up too late. One positive to the winds was we were able to sleep with the windows open to enjoy the fresh air and breeze. Sometime during the night the winds died down and the gentle breeze of West Texas welcomed us on the morning of my 44th birthday! Will made cinnamon rolls in the toaster oven outside and I enjoyed them while I started my blog post for the day. We have a (hopefully) busy day as the park we are going to only opened back up on Tuesday. Due to COVID precautions they are only allowing a certain number of people in and it is first come first served. Whatever the day holds for us, we will be flexible and roll with it!
I am going to start prepping what I can for tonight’s dinner while we drive into the next time zone!