Kerrville, Texas

Our route follows the Guadeloupe River for many miles. The valley that holds the blue-green water is serene; trees and grass growing within the river’s reach are verdant. We crossed the shallow channel today half a dozen times on low concrete bridges.

I had spoken with my uncle on the phone about perhaps meeting today, and we decided to rendezvous in a state park outside of Kerrville. When we rode into Kerrville-Schreiner State Park, the Odoms were already there. Janette had prepared a casserole, a dish that is well-known in the family as Sackie’s Mess. We ate well on the banks of the river. This was the third consecutive dinner that I did not prepare. We are becoming spoiled.

Dusk is falling swiftly. There is a group of perhaps two dozen ten-year-olds camping within a hundred feet of us. The noise emanating from the swarm is enough to drive a man crazy. In addition, every one them has either a glow stick or an empty plastic tube and is covered in glowing liquid. Several glow sticks dangle from the trees. The ironic “quiet whistle” has pierced the chorus of hellish screams several times. Helpless adults scramble to round the demons into tiny little tents. I almost hope it rains three inches tonight to wash their camp into the river.