Local news this morning included a feature on the upcoming Strawberry Festival to be held this weekend in Pasadena, a pretty fair-sized city of a couple hundred thousand or so located just southeast of Houston.
It reminded me of many years ago when my daughter was about 12 years old. She and I went to a lot of festivals around Texas, including the one in Pasadena. Hubby usually worked on Saturdays, so it was most often just the two of us.
We both loved to go and watch all the people having fun. We'd ride the rides, play the games, eat whatever food was being featured, and just have a high old time. We'd come back home laughing, sunburned, and exhausted.
Texas has a lot of festivals. I don't remember for sure, but it seems to me that -- if we'd wanted to -- we could have attended a different one every weekend. Neat!
This one weekend, however, all three of us were in Schulenberg (perhaps one hundred miles west of Houston) for a bowling tournament. We finished early on Saturday. Maybe we were knocked out of the tournament? I don't recall why we finished early. ANYway, there was plenty of time to do something else. We'd already booked a motel room for the night, so we started checking around to see whatall else might be going on that we could take in together as a family.
We thought, perhaps a movie. Well, there was no theater. We thought about just taking a nice leisurely walk around the town to see some of the historic sights (Schulenberg is one of many communities in Central and West Texas that was settled by German immigrants). Then, we heard about a strawberry festival being held in a town maybe half an hour's drive up the road. We went.
This particular rural community was large enough to support a blinking red light in the very center. Wow! A law officer stopped us, and asked if we trying to get through on the state highway. (It seems that the blinking red light area had been closed off to traffic. They were having a street dance! We could hear the music and laughter, and couldn't wait to get there!!) When we told him that we were there for the festival, he gave us some hints as to where we might try to find a parking place. We found one.
Have you ever been to a street dance in a rural area? Well, it's something else!! Young people dancing with old, people dancing holding mere infants, people with no sense of rhythm at all (& who cared?) having just a wonderful time.
We quickly got into the spirit of things. Mostly, tho, we were immensely enjoying ourselves just watching the action. The atmosphere of good will, fun, and hilarity was contagious.
At one point, we were all straining to hear what this 'old coot' was muttering. We'd noticed him standing off to the side, slowly shaking his head and talking to himself. We didn't want him to stop talking. We just wanted to hear what he was saying!
So, we edged closer and closer until, finally, we heard, "Ah thought ah knew everyone in Fayette County, but ah guess ah don't."