Tuesday, June 28, 2016

History in the Making


A recent trip along the back roads of East Texas led us to a quick stop at the Rusk County Depot Museum which had tons of history on display in the form of documents, antique equipment and restored buildings.  There is way too much to cover in one blog entry.

I also didn't have a lot of time for this stop so I spent most of it strolling the grounds to check out the old buildings.  One thing I learned was that I was genuinely interested in knowing how brooms were made.  I honestly didn't know this until I came here.

https://2.bp.blogspot.com/--z7IN2EzGPk/V3LqTpG1UiI/AAAAAAAAD3M/y_qi3zsY6joK5822tDGd76XHOKySQVrkACLcB/s700/oh2.jpg                https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-4u5Zdsr7tgk/V3Lqd5KWVDI/AAAAAAAAD3U/vDsevqUeLcEc-Xha_xuTDZrnVnR3obgRQCLcB/s700/oh3.jpg

All right, so brooms don't grow in the wild...we've learned that today but there's an even bigger lesson to take away here.  In my opinion the most memorable building on the location is the "Arnold Outhouse":


Sure, it may not be as exciting as the See-Thru Bathroom in downtown Sulphur Springs but it is historically significant.  So much so that it has its own Historical Marker:


The marker reads:

     "Prominent Henderson businessman and civic leader John R. Arnold moved his family to this property in 1908. He added a second story to the home (razed in 1966) that already existed at the site. He also built a number of structures around the property, including this outhouse. It was larger than most standard outhouses of its day, and the milled pattern on the door and window facings matched that of the large Arnold house. The Arnold Outhouse is preserved to illustrate part of the lifestyle of 19th and early 20th-century Texans."

But that information is no substitute for witnessing an outhouse firsthand:


Yes kids, that's how it used to be.  This was the best case scenario for getting your "thinking done."  Ask your grandparents why there are catalogues and corncobs in there.

And when you start thinking about how bad the world is now, I would encourage you to always look on the bright side.  Despite political, economical and environmental turmoil...at the very least...we get to poop inside.  And sometimes that makes all the difference.


Monday, June 13, 2016

Eat and/or Be Eaten


As you can imagine, the "East Texas Gators and Wildlife Park" in Grand Saline is packed with various wildlife but the main event is definitely the gators.  And the best part of watching gators is: feeding time!  Each day at 11:00 AM and 3:00 PM a park employee will bring out the feeding bucket the frenzy begins!

The gators' menu seems to consist of (at least during scheduled feeding times) chopped up chicken parts.  When a piece hits the ground it doesn't take long to end up inside a gator's belly.  Here's a little glimpse at supper time:




 If watching that makes you work up an appetite then the Park has a way to turn the tables and put you in the role of predator by offering a small selection of dishes with alligator meat at the Park's Grill (bottom left):


Behold the Gator Kabob!!


A little small for the price but the gator meat was fantastic.  It was perfectly seasoned and well textured.  The old cliche is that it "tastes like chicken" but this had more of a red meat vibe, probably since it was grilled with similar spices that would be used on a steak.  It wasn't gamey at all.  The veggies were good too!

So whether you're interested in gators eating or eating gators, this place is definitely worth a stop!