Hill Country Hideout

Hill Country Hideout- “Someplace down in Texas” (It’s in Canyon Lake). Wednesday is open mic night and just because it’s Christmas day, it makes no difference. There are 29, or so, taps but because of the holidays, there are only a few. Some real good singers (the host is not included in this description) share the mic, one at a time, and the one guitar. The sign says something about mics and bikes. “Bikes”,however, don’t mean pedal bikes, because, Texas.

Llano to Castell.

A profile of the county road between Llano and Castell, Texas would resemble an asymmetrical standing wave as it rises and falls through the central Texas Hill Country. A two lane road with no shoulders but little traffic. The drivers who do use this road are invariably courteous to cyclists. It might be because they are unaccustomed to seeing us on the road, but I prefer to believe it is because being courteous is a mandate in Texas.

Indian Paint Brush and whatever Bluebonnets survived the recent freezing weather are blooming in the borrow pit. Beyond the road right of way is the scrub brush , pecan trees and live oak trees that thrive in this part of Texas, all behind the fences of the private ranches. A light, steady southwest wind blows.

At the Castell store I order a hamburger and Stacy orders the grilled chicken sandwich. A half dozen men sit at the bar considering topics of local importance. While waiting for our sandwiches on the front porch, a man with a red and white MAGA hat steps out of a pickup. A sticker on the front door of the store says something about a village in Kenya missing an idiot.

A buzzard wheels high overhead.