Published: February 19th 2011February 19th 2011
End Wall of Bunk House
Remember the picture of all the cracks, etc.? This is what it looks like now.
.Jan. 23-27 The final week of the Pharr project. We spent most of the week putting the final touches on everything and painting the whole building. One of the church ladies told us that she overheard another person not of this church say how nice the place was looking. We felt very proud of our job.
Thursday night we had a team dinner at one of the winter homes of a couple on the team. This way we got to say goodbye to all the new friends we had made. It certainly is easy to bond with such nice people when you work hard together. The last day becomes bittersweet.
Jan. 28: Not everybody left the same time. Don and Evelyn stayed as they are also working the next three weeks for the same agency. They had decided to go over the border to Mexico and shop for a few things today. Evelyn was anxious because a missionary had been shot in a Mexican border town just a few miles from us. I believe the incident was on national news. We decided to go anyway. They drove their truck and parked at a border parking lot and we walked
The completed front of the dorm at San Juan Methodist Church.
across the bridge spanning the Rio Grande River into the Mexican town of Progreso. One of the first things we saw was several Mexican soldiers armed with machine guns standing by a tank. I'm not sure that made me feel any safer!!! I really wasn't worried, however. There were plenty of other Americans also shopping. The streets were lined with pharmacies where one can buy just about any kind of medicine short of narcotics. Also there was store after store advertising doctors and dentists. We found one big store that handled all the things I wanted to look at. I wound up buying a rainbow colored stole, a little corn husk doll, a t-shirt and some candy. I hope nothing was made in China!!
After coming safely back across the river, we headed to a produce market and then back to the Rvs. I packed up and unhooked. The next group would be pulling in very shortly. Giving one last farewell to Don and Evelyn, I drove to Edinburg and parked in a Flying J truck stop. Bootsie—I did not like where we stopped at all. It was very noisy. These big giant things made loud roaring noises
and seemed to be everywhere! I thought they were going to come right into our house and get me. Everything seemed to be moving, too. There were lots of lights and things. I paced all night and kept pestering Marty to tell her I was not happy. She would pet me and talk to me and then one of those big noisy monsters would come by and I would jump and hide. I was scared. I hope we never go there again!!!
The bell tower at San Juan Methodist Church where we worked.
Jan. 29: Well, Bootsie and I didn't get much sleep last night! I think this is the first time we have stayed at a Flying J since I got him. I decided maybe a Walmart lot would be more to his liking so went looking.
I had been trying for several days to contact my cousin Linda and her husband Eddie who live in Edinburg. I was thinking I might have to leave the area without getting to see them, when Eddie called. I told him where I was parked and he said they would be over later in the afternoon.
It was wonderful to see Linda again. She is the youngest daughter of Leo,
The bridge we walked across to get to Mexico.
one of the only set of twins of the 14 children. She looks a lot like her mother did. Last year she had many health problems and spent a lot of time in the hospital. I was so glad she was able to get out of the house to visit. I had never met Eddie before. We talked and talked. I learned that they also have a motor-home that Eddie is fixing and they hope Linda's health will allow them to travel some this year. We went to supper at one of the area's well known Mexican restaurants. The place was packed and the food was good.
January 30: Eddie came by this morning to take me to church with him. Unfortunately this wasn't one of Linda's good days. She had been sick all night, possibly from the spicy food we had. Eddie said they never really knew for sure what triggered the headaches and nausea attacks. I was disappointed not to get to see her again, but I certainly understood
After church, I sent Eddie back home to Linda and hit the road again. I wanted to explore the gulf coast line and had made reservations at
Rio Grande River
From the bridge.
an RV park in Corpus Christi. I arrived at the park just at dusk, which was good. I don't like to drive at night
Jan 31: I found out that the Naval Air Station is just down the street from the park. It's a great opportunity to renew my military dependents card which is due this year. The fellows were so nice that did it. One of them grew up in Interlachen. Isn't it a small world? My new card caused a little pang. Arnie was marked "dec." and the clerk said I am my own sponsor now.
This afternoon I explored the north end of Padre Island. It was a foggy, foggy day, so I didn't get the beautiful vistas the area is noted for. It was still very interesting, however. I have been on several barrier islands on the east coast, so wasn't really bothered by the reduced visibility. This is the second time I have been in such a heavy fog while on a coast. The other was in California. Anyway, I listened to a ranger talk about the different kinds of shells one can find on this shoreline. Unfortunately, the good shelling places are
available only to four-wheel drive vehicles. My RV certainly doesn't fit that! I could just see myself stuck in the sand in that thing!
I walked up and down the beach looking at the birds, mostly terns, stayed huddled together against the wind and maybe the fog, too. I confess I had fun walking up to the groups and making them fly up. Then I would take pictures. Got one or two decent ones out of about 100. I love my digital camera!!!!
I drove down to another accessible beach area where there is free dry camping right on the beach. Again, I don't think I would be brave enough to try it, but the sand was hard and there were trailers as big as my RV there.
Coming back to the mainland, I saw one or two interesting fronts on buildings, so snapped some pics. The bridge over the inland waterway was, of course, very high so ships could come and go. I thought about my friend Maureen in Interlachen who hates high bridges. She closes her eyes if she had to be one. The causeway leading to the bridge is a long one, but not
Welcome to Mexico
Our first sight after crossing the bridge.
There are more photos below