"Two roads diverged in a yellow wood... And sorry I could not travel both. I took the one less traveled by. And that has made all the difference." --Robert Frost

Monday, April 12, 2021

Texas with Friends

Fort Stockton, Texas
Centex RV Park

After leaving New Mexico early, it was a long 6 hour drive to get to our next stop in time to have dinner with our nephew who was in town for business.

Goodbye New Mexico, Hello Texas!
We arrived, set up, then headed an hour north to the small, dusty town of Monahans.  There wasn't too much to pick from so we ended up at a place called Pho & Italian Restaurant.  What a combo!  Our nephew, Michael, and I had the spicy Pho and Steve had Italian.  I have to say it was all very good!  The service was very, very slow, but the food was delicious!  Funny thing, they don't sell alcohol but we were told by the owner we could go across the street and buy what we wanted and bring it in. They call it BYOB.  Apparently it's a thing.  It was a short dinner visit but we were so happy to see him again by chance!
We rarely stay at private parks but there isn't much to choose from in Fort Stockton.  It was too hot to stay at the Walmart so we chose Westex.  It's a fairly new private park far enough away from I-10 to be quiet.  Very simple and very clean.  There are a lot of small campgrounds around here to house workers from the oilfields.  The park was mostly empty.  The owner was nice.  We had FHU for $25.  The sites were large.  We were in #3.  They have a nice dog park separated for small and large dogs.
We filled up the tank in town and left early in the morning.
It was only 2 or 3 years previous that you'd get little to no cell before and after Junction but now they have added more and more towers and I had reception the entire way.  Nice. Originally we were headed to Junction for a stop-over to see Red & Pam after leaving Fort Stockton.  Then I  heard from Pam that they were leaving early from Junction and driving straight over to Greg & Cori's where we were headed the next day.  They wanted us to skip Junction and come straight to Spring Branch so we could all have dinner together and celebrate Red's birthday that night.  So we did.
Another long day of driving and here we are, at The Center for Mental Wellness, as they jokingly call their place.
Red & Pam on the left, us on the right.
They built their "Barndo" on 11 acres which also has a barn, and RV parking (with FHUs)!  When we get ready to do something similar, this is exactly how I picture it.  Great job guys!
Happy Birthday Red!!
Red, Steve, Pam, Cori & Greg.
We arrived just in time for dinner.  Fillet Mignon & Scallops, loaded potatoes and salad.
Enjoying a little Peach Moonshine :-)

Greg and Cori added a new member to the family.
Meet Trip.  He's a cutie pie!
Trip and Hurley palled around.  Hurley was happy to have another 4 legged companion.
And this cute gal is Sadie.  New family member of Pam & Red.  She's adorable too!
Me, Steve, Red & Pam
Trip, Greg & Cori.
Pam & Red left after a couple days to head over to Arizona to visit with her Dad and we still had a few days left.  Cori planned out some distillery tours.
First up was Ben Milan Whiskey in Blanco.
I loved this tin(?) kayak beside the entrance.  Very cool.  Nice design on top too.

The guys had a sampler and Cori and I chose cocktails.

Then we had a small tour of Andalusia Whiskey Company.

Another afternoon once Steve was off of work was dinner at Gristmill River.  What a beautiful place above the river in the cute town of Gruene.

Built in 1878 on the old gristmill and cotton gin.  Beautiful gardens and seating inside and outside.
The best and biggest Onion Rings for an appetizer.  So tasty!
After dinner we walked next door to listen to some country music at Gruene Hall.  Such character!
Back home the pooches relaxed.  Hurley was overcome by the sheer number of toys Trip had.  He kept going back to the basket to check out more.

Our last day we were in search of some Goat Milk soap for me.  Usually you can find it at any cute little downtown store.  So many were closed when we stopped by, including the Fischer Store.
On the way back we stopped in at Buc-ee's.  It's a Texas staple.  If you haven't had the chance and you see one, you must stop in.  It's the biggest gas station/snackers heaven/multi-purpose place you'll ever see!  There are over 100 gas pumps and they are all used.  This place is HUGE!  And BONUS, I found some great Goat Milk soap to stock up on!
It might be hard to tell but that's two very long islands of gas pumps!

We sure enjoyed our time with our RV friends that we made when we all attended the RV Dreams Seminar 7 years ago.  As a matter of fact, right now, this very minute, the final Seminar is going on as Howard and Linda (the founders) will be moving on to their next phase of life without an RV.  Thank you Greg & Cori for the hospitality!!  
We sure loved our time at the "Center for Mental Wellness" and your place!
Thanks for celebrating my birthday with us again!

Our third and final stop in Texas would be closer to the eastern side of Texas before we enter Louisiana.
We saw this while driving.  Not too sure if I'd feel good about skydiving here.
I talked to my folks on the way and was glad to see they were having a great time back in California Striper fishing with Brennan and his wife, Alex, and her parents at their duck club.  

San Felipe, Texas
Stephen F Austin State Park
This park is small and very well kept.  It had a lot of flood damage a couple years ago but all fixed back up.  The sites are huge and well spaced out.  It's so green here!  We love all the moss hanging from the huge trees.
$28, FHUs.  We had site #23.
More RV friends!  This time we are joined by Craig & Jo.  This is their nice class A.  We just had 3 days together but we shared nice dinners and a lot of catching up.  It's been about 3 years since we've seen them last.
More pictures of our site.

We went out to dinner at Repka's Grocery Cafe for some uh dem mudbugs!  The 3 of them ate 8 lbs! I had the catfish.
Lovely sunset on the way home.  The weather is getting more and more humid.  We know the rest of the trip will continue this way.
The Brazos River
We took a couple short hikes while we were here.

There is a nice memorial and information center just outside of the park with the area history.

Another nice visit with friends and now we're on our way out of Texas and into Louisiana.
More friends and more food!


  1. That’s awesome you guys got together. Greg and Cori’s place seems to be a pretty popular stop over for many. Safe travels!

    1. Yes it is very popular!! They did a fantastic job on their place!

  2. So cool that you were able to meet up with Greg and Cori and
    Red and Pam. We have yet to see their place but hope to stop by someday. Craig and Jo seem like great people too. We had met them once when we first hit the road. Nice stripper, I would love to catch one of those someday!

    1. It's so nice to SEE people again, face to face! Especially from the Old Gang! They caught quite a few Stripers that day.

  3. How great to be able to stop and stay with friends! FHU is sure a bonus too :-) I've heard of Buc-Ee's, but haven't stopped at one. You're moving quite fast-6 hours drive days are long for you. When is your niece's wedding? I bet it'll be wonderful to see family again!

    1. It really was nice to visit with RV friends again! We need to be in FL mid-May for a wedding. That did turn into a long day but worth it to be with friends longer.

  4. We love the TX state parks, we stayed at Stephen Foster SP our first year on the road. No mudbugs for me either.
    We're hoping to one day have a similar type of set up, just have to figure out where but one day we'll find it.
    In all our years in TX we've never stopped at a Buc-ee's, I'll have to get Dave to stop one day.

    1. I don't mind the crawdads, but I like catfish much more! It's funny that most people don't care for the weather in their hometown, but that's where most of them build! I can't believe you've never been to a Buc-ees!


I’d love to hear from you! It’s more fun when you leave a comment!