What does one pack for a trip when the destination is only slightly cooler than the surface of the sun? Personally I have no idea, only that I'll probably melt into a puddle the minute I step outside of the air conditioned bliss of the Austin airport. Why would anyone in their right mind take a slightly extended mini-break to Texas in the middle of July? Only for the love of a family member- my brother is leaving for Afghanistan next week and my sister, parents and his fiance are all converging on that hottest of locals for 5 days of family fun.

Not that Kileen is the happiest place on earth, but rather where his base is so in this situation we come to him. And really, from what Glenn has told me Kileen is in the exact middle of nowhere. I really expect the first thing I'll need to do after de-boarding is pick up some sunscreen since the TSA is so unkind about the amounts of 'liquids and gels' one can bring with themselves aboard a plane. 3 ounces of sunscreen is nothing and I'm very, very white. I glow, people. Last year I had more free time (thanks second job) and so had spent more time outside building up some natural color (while wearing the 'screen). And I'm going to try to avoid like freaking hell to check bags since I would be charged an addition $15 each way. Shelling out ridiculous amounts of money already on ticket wasn't enough, now they want to bleed me dry to check a bag.

Ok, so $15 won't break me but it's still ridiculous.

Right now I'm focusing on the positives, Melissa will be free from all her adorable little goblins since they will be staying at home. Straight up sister time! We've not had that since we took a trip to Vegas a couple of years ago; the last family outing which involved a hospital visit, an intervention, and gambling- the perfect Vegas trip no? Oh, Melissa and I also hid out in the bathroom every morning in our hotel room, drinking coffee and eating fresh donuts and trying not to wake the other sister who was still sleeping. I don't know why but that is one of my favorite memories of us, our backs pressed up against the tub laughing and downing coffee and donuts.

So anyways, Melissa and I are hoping to spend some time pool side, slathered in copious amounts of sunscreen drinking some Shiner Bock. We've also got a very strict goal of eating as much as we possibly can, all our childhood favorites to be specific (we all lived in Texas for 10 years in the 80's). On the list are mexican food, snow cones (no one does snow cones like Texas), BBQ and Ranch Beans. I'm sure there are more things but really I'm trying to appear not entirely gluttonous right now. I know I'm not the only member of the family that is obsessed with the good food from Texas, my Dad is planning on stopping at his favorite chocolate place and loading up. I fully expect that by the time they reach Ohio he'll be deep into a Fudge Love coma.

In preparation for the trip I also bought a new camera, shocking behavior for a photographer- I know. My old point and shoot was complete shit, it was a lemon from the day I got it and I sent it back for repairs at least 4 times before I just gave up on it entirely. Its been half operational for a year and half, and really it was time to upgrade. I ended up with a little Canon Elf, and thus far I'm completely in love with it. It is exactly what I've been looking for in a little point and shoot- the color is good, it works well without needing the flash (providing there is appropriate light available) and is small. Now I will barrage you all with photos.

It's a good thing I'm leaving soon because these pickles I made the other night are taunting me from the refridgerator. 10 days feels entirely too long to wait before I'm allowed to open the jar. Patience is clearly a virtue I lack:

Random salad I made for dinner. Roast beets, bacon and pine nuts in a basil chili feta dressing:

Bernard (the MG Midget) and I went for a drive, stopping at these old, sort of creepy brick kilns:

Here I am being a chicken shit about going inside:

Phallic smoke stack!

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  • At July 03, 2008 6:42 PM, Blogger Hillary said…

    nice photos - I especially love the pickle one

    hope you enjoy your mini-break!

  • At July 07, 2008 2:55 PM, Blogger Ian said…

    What is that in the pickle jar? It looks like a toe.

  • At July 07, 2008 6:31 PM, Anonymous Jemima said…

    One packs a caftan and a floppy hat. Or a string bikini and SPF 5000.

    I'm so jealous that you're eating southern food! Have some barbecue and baked beans for me. Mmmm... (just had special moment)

    I think having giggly moments with your sister are the best memories ever. My sister and I can share an inside joke by just not looking at each other. The snorting hysterics come later. God, I miss her.

    Also love the pickle shot. I'm dying to jar some stuff. Was it hard?


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