Bluebonnets. I don’t know what it is about them, but every year, they seem to bring a smile to my face. Sadly, they only stay in peak bloom for about 2-4 weeks out of the entire year. Maybe it’s all those grade school lessons or that picture of my parents in a field of bluebonnets that sat in my childhood home for so many years, either way the state flower of Texas holds a fond place in my heart. MJ and I usually get our fill of bluebonnets along the road to Houston, but on our last 2 trips, they had yet to bloom. Thankfully, this year, the hills in Austin were covered with them and their beautiful companions, the Indian paintbrush.
But clearly my appetite was not satiated as MJ and I drove 160 miles to the small town of Ennis, TX just to look at more…bluebonnets. Known as the “Official Bluebonnet City” of Texas, Ennis is located just south of Dallas and is home to one of the largest Czechoslovakian populations in Texas. MJ was hoping to try some Czech food or at the very least enjoy a really good kolache; I on the other hand wanted a jumbo corndog, potato twisters, and a roasted turkey leg at the festival – we ended up getting a scoop of Cappuccino Chocolate Chunk frozen yogurt from Braum’s. Random. I know. But I must say it was incredibly satisfying on this warm day in Texas.
The festival was definitely geared towards families as there were plenty of activities for the kiddos. Pony rides, a rock wall, a trampoline station, and a mechanical bull were just some of the attractions. I could tell being around all the little ones pained MJ a little, though, as we continue to try for one of our own. The road’s been tough, but I’m confident that our patience and our trusting in God will not leave us discouraged for too long. In any trial or sorrow, more than anything of this world…Jesus is better! We continue to pray that this is the true belief of our hearts.
With our visitor map in hand, we made our way to the “Official Bluebonnet Trail”…At first, we were discouraged as we had seen better views in Austin, but then one turn down a dirt road and we saw it…a vast sea of blue! I had never seen anything like it.
There was something special about that moment, breathing in the sweet aroma of the wildflowers and being in the company of my wife. These are the times I cherish – when the stresses of life just seem to melt away and the worries of the day just don’t seem to matter anymore. We stopped often on the dirt road to soak in all the views and ended the trail with this lovely sight…
It was about this time that my stomach started talking to me and reminded me that all I’d had to eat in the last 5 hours was a cone of frozen yogurt. Needless to say, we quickly made our way back to the main road and headed for home. Will we be back? Probably not. Now I don’t want to take away from the experience, but as spectacular as that field of bluebonnets was, there are a number of places closer to home that give me the warm fuzzies in their own ways. Chappell Hill, for example, has an annual bluebonnet festival that I would recommend over the one in Ennis. And Fredericksburg offers some great views at about half the driving distance.
Whoa…600 words. Did I mention I like bluebonnets?