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Our 2005 Road Trip, Part 8 of 10: Dr Pepper Picked a Place for Prepping Peppers

Dr. Pepperbot!

Dr Pepper-bot welcomes you to Waco, not to Westworld.

Previously on Midlife Crisis Crossover:

Welcome to the first installment of another special MCC miniseries, representing the original travelogue from our 2005 drive from Indianapolis to San Antonio, Texas, and back again in far too short a time…

I’d love to say our whirlwind tour of Texas was a two-week sightseeing spree through all the major cities you’ve heard of from movies and TV, but time didn’t permit and they’re not all in a straight line five miles apart. (Houston and Corpus Christi were particularly disappointing to miss because at the time we knew folks who lived in each.) If all our Plan A’s had worked out, right about here would be a bonus chapter on our first expedition into Mexico, but time didn’t permit and two of us three travelers chickened out. Part of me is also annoyed at past-Me for skipping out on any Austin research altogether, but time didn’t permit because we hadn’t earned enough vacation time in our respective office jobs to take more than the single week we’d set aside.

But as always, we did the best we could with what we had to work with. And if that meant taking a slight detour to go Be a Pepper, so be it.

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Our 2005 Road Trip, Part 7 of 10: Total Texas Taxidermy

Moose and Us!

The oddest thing about this moose photo op is that I have no memory of the shirt IM’ wearing in it. Once I started regaining lost weight in the years ahead, it was probably first into the Goodwill bag.

Previously on Midlife Crisis Crossover:

Welcome to the first installment of another special MCC miniseries, representing the original travelogue from our 2005 drive from Indianapolis to San Antonio, Texas, and back again in far too short a time…

As you get older it’s always interesting to look back through your old photos, recall past occasions spurred by visual stimuli from the photos you saved, and kick yourself for the pics you either lost over time or never took in the first place. Searching our personal archives in preparation for this remastered miniseries got a bit annoying when I realized we had five times as many dead-animal pics as we did live-animal pics. The disparity between this entry and our San Antonio Zoo visit was no intentional slight on our part against the Lone Star State or its perception of animals.

Or maybe at age 33 I just thought stuffed animals were more fascinating than live ones like what we have back home at the Indianapolis Zoo. Honestly, we’ve been to our own zoo so many times, we probably have enough shots to make our own flipbook of the animals aging in real time. But creatively posed ex-critters? That’s, like, different. I guess?

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Our 2005 Road Trip, Part 6 of 10: Riverwalk Wanderlust

San Antonio Riverwalk!

If you think the only Texas greenery are tumbleweeds and tobacco, the San Antonio Riverwalk begs to differ.

Previously on Midlife Crisis Crossover:

Welcome to the first installment of another special MCC miniseries, representing the original travelogue from our 2005 drive from Indianapolis to San Antonio, Texas, and back again in far too short a time…

Our hometown of Indianapolis has its own Downtown Canal Walk, patterned after similar, larger pathways developed and fostered in other states. There’s something about a swath of nature cutting through the heart of civilization’s artifices and escorting tranquility and beauty into an otherwise hard-shelled environment. Anne and I have also visited riverwalks in Pueblo and in Milwaukee, but my favorite is still the first one we did through faraway San Antonio. Once we started up its staircases and across its bridges, it wasn’t long before wanderlust kicked in and I wanted to see every path through to its end, or as far as they’d take us before we collapsed in the dry Texas heat.

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Our 2005 Road Trip, Part 5 of 10: Remembering the Alamo

Alamo Morning Anne!

Before you ask, no, they wouldn’t show us the basement, just gave us some poppycock about having no such thing. It’s probably for VIPs only.

Previously on Midlife Crisis Crossover:

Welcome to the first installment of another special MCC miniseries, representing the original travelogue from our 2005 drive from Indianapolis to San Antonio, Texas, and back again in far too short a time…

Before making any plans for 2005 we’d asked my son if there was any particular place he’d like to visit within a reasonable driving distance. His first qualifying suggestion off the top of his head was The Alamo. That fleeting thought became the centerpiece of our 2005 vacation planning. To this day he doesn’t remember the suggestion, why he would’ve chosen it, or most of this week in his life in general. But his wish was granted, even if “wish” was too strong a word.

One odd find: as I was digging through boxes to compile our 2003 vacation keepsakes a couple months ago, I came across an ad on the back of our souvenir Smithsonian Museum program that, in the grand scheme, could be interpreted as foreshadowing of this trip. Who knew.

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Our 2005 Road Trip, Part 3 of 10: Deep in the Heart of Texas

Texarkana Welcome Center!

Pit stop at the Texas Welcome Center in Texarkana, Texas, which is not to be confused with its next-door twin city of Texarkana, Arkansas. Not sure which one’s the evil one.

Previously on Midlife Crisis Crossover:

Welcome to the first installment of another special MCC miniseries, representing the original travelogue from our 2005 drive from Indianapolis to San Antonio, Texas, and back again in far too short a time…

Texas. The Lone Star State. The largest state we’ve ever visited. Which is logical because the only larger United State is Alaska, which we’d have driven to by now if it were thousands of miles closer. We even know someone who lives there, so someday we’ll have to find an excuse to head up there. Maybe if we ever dive deeper into the world of air travel, save up enough vacation days, and remember to fly with any airline other than United.

Wait. Where were we? Oh, right: Texas. That big, long, flat, dry, world-famous state. From our first day inside its borders, as the driver I mostly remember the “long” part.

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