February 6, 2016 – Sunny, 60 degrees
Miles Today: 44
Miles to Date: 11,449
States to Date: 28
Welcome to the Texas Hill Country – gigantic high school football stadiums and the cheapest gas yet. Fill up your car for $135.9 per gallon in New Braunfels. According to the inflation calculator, that’s cheaper then the 25-cent per gallon gas I used to fill up my very first tank as a fledgling driver in Oklahoma in 1971.
The weather was perfect for cycling, although the wind gave me a workout. I oscillated between three environments: lovely quiet Farm to Market Roads, miles of big box houses along the I-35 corridor, and the picturesque town of New Braunfels, which has vintage Texas architecture, both commercial and residential.
I took a break at the New Braunfels library to get relief from the wind and enjoyed two hours writing at a counter with a vista of the blue skies sand rolling hills. Two old men near me discussed presidential politics. “This guy Bernie Sanders is a communist. He lived in a kibbutz!”
Beyond New Braunfels the village of Gruene is a busy tourist spot. I navigated around a phalanx of parked cars, heard the folk singers entertain from the outdoor open stage, and marveled at the number of people who gathered to shop and eat at this crossroads on a sunny Saturday afternoon. I seemed to be the only person riding open on two wheels instead of being enclosed by four.
The final stretch to San Marcos was pure delight. The wind dissipated, the shoulder was smooth. I cast a long late afternoon shadow. Last night’s rain left the air crisp and fresh. The deeper I inhaled, the more I wanted to draw it into me.