I’m back, unscathed, from vacation. We had a lovely time, mostly not doing anything, which for me was a huge deal. I didn’t realize how really hard it is for me to shut everything down.  It took me a couple of days to really figure out the whole relaxation thing. My brain didn’t really want to shut down. The first evening, I kept wanting to turn on the television. And then I was going nuts not knowing what was going on in the news. And then it started to be pretty awesome, and there were long stretches of whole minutes at a time where I could just gaze out on the lake and do nothing at all.

This was on one of the hiking trails. Texas has just about every kind of terrain–deserts, mountains, forests, coastal plains and beaches–but the Hill Country in the central state is what most people picture as characteristically Texan. Limestone hills, red dirt, lots of cactus, mesquite and live oak. It was very dry when we were there, but in the spring when the wildflowers bloom, it’s beautiful.

This was the view from our porch. You can see a little bit of the lake here. Lake Buchanon is actually quite large. The dam that created it is some kind of unique structure, built in the 30’s, and the last of it’s kind. I wish I’d gotten a picture that showed more of the lake, which is actually in a valley, with some gorgeous vistas. But I didn’t.

This is slightly blurry because this guy was so close to Mr. RCM that he couldn’t focus the camera properly. (Well, he probably could have, but it was my camera and therefore unfamiliar, and Mr. RCM doesn’t believe in reading the manual for anything.) I include it because few non-Texan have seen an armadillo that isn’t squashed on the side of the road.  Few Texans, for that matter.

This guy kept peering up over the side of our porch. Obviously not afraid of humans.

Here is Lizzie, in my spot. Lizzie and I spent most of our time here, except when we retreated to the air conditioning. Lizzie is not an outdoor dog. It was kind of funny that she showed much more interest in the kids that were there than any other dogs or animals. Lizzie clearly thinks she is a person, and all other dogs come in the same category as Rocky the raccoon up there: interesting, but Not Her Kind.

One last vista, this time of the lake, again, not really doing justice to it’s setting.

These are just a few of the pictures.  If you want to see more (actually, the Hill Country is quite beautiful, even in summer) you can go to my web gallery.  There aren’t a ton, but there are some nice ones. (And more of Lizzie, of course.)