Friday, September 20, 2013

There's a spirit can ne'er be told...

Being born and raised in Bryan/College Station, Texas was an idyllic experience. The best of both worlds; Mayberry meets a major university (Texas A&M University). After living in three different states since the last time I lived in Texas, I still consider it my home in my heart and soul forever. And I've been blessed to be able to visit several times a year for the last several years. This year was a banner one; I was there every other month in the last six months and a trip earlier in the year. My oldest son has made it his home (his and his middle brother's daddy is also from there). This last trip, the first week of September, was particularly special since my mother met me there from where she now makes her home in Oregon and we got to go to an Aggie game for the first time in over 25 years. My mom had not been back to B/CS for almost 15 years. I'd been trying to talk her into meeting me there but she'd resisted until one day, a couple of months ago, she called me and declared she wanted to see Johnny Manziel play football in person. See, I come from a football family. Sure, all of us Texans do, but I come from a woman's football family too. My mother's mother went to University of Nebraska. Her husband, my grandfather, was a football fanatic and so was she. My grandmother passed away on January 1, 1997 and her doctor said that the he truly believed that she lived until then because she wanted to watch the Nebraska bowl game the night before. I have no doubt that's true. My mom watches football and baseball but any and all football. And she calls after every Aggie game to go over highlights. So when she said she wanted to go I went to my precious Becky and she made it happen. Becky and I have been best friends since we were six and her family has a box at Kyle Field. She had told me several times to pick a date and they seats were ours. Of course I knew better than to ask for Alabama seats; I would never have taken those from her and her brother, Sam. We saw the Sam Houston State game, a great one.
This is me on the left with Becky and her family together for her cousin's wedding when we were about 12. We have a long, close history. 
Yes, 50 yard line seats in a box! 
My favorite part of the school and the game, The National Award Winning Fightin' Texas Aggie Band.

The game, the box, the friends and family in the box, everything was great...amazing.

Before that, on Friday night it was First Friday in Downtown Bryan and I had arranged for my bestie childhood friends who knew my mother well to meet us for dinner downtown. It turned out to be beyond my great expectations and here's why. For one thing, Becky's kids and mine are very close...the next generation of our friendship and it warms our hearts to no end. And her brother, Sam, always meets up with all of us whenever I'm in town. We are one great, happy family and, along with our other longtime best friends, a bigger, happiest family. So Friday night we were all together for dinner and then some...
Becky's older son, Harrison, my oldest, Lucas, and his girl Kristen.
The friend I've had the longest on the left (can't see her at all but you can see she's there), Cindy, then Cathy and Betty Ann, dear friends since childhood.
A huge highlight of the night is on the left, Kristi, my parent's God daughter, my mom, and brother Sam. Kristi surprised all of us by just showing up having driven in from Houston to see my mom. It was awesome!
Mom, Kristi, and Daddy at Kristi's baptism, St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, Bryan, Texas, 1963.
Later, on Friday night, Lucas found a band playing next to Village Cafe' and we dance the night away. Since Becky and I have a good friend who has a band, we know how to support one and were the only dancers to the great music while people sat in chairs! I'm a dancer; I love music, I dance in the grocery store if the music is good. And Becky is the same way. So we danced. Then the lead singer, between songs, said how much he appreciated everyone including his good friends for coming out to support THEIR FIRST PUBLIC GIG. He said that they really appreciated their band dancers, ha!, that was me and Becky. After taking our bows, the band's friends figured out that they weren't being as supportive as they thought they were and hit the dance floor, filled it, then it was a party.

The weekend ended with just as high a note as the rest. Church with mom and Billie and lots of other folks who mean so much to us at St. Andrew's.
Then Lucas and I took Mom out to the Brazos Valley Veteran's Memorial Park to see my daddy's name etched on the maroon wall there.
The last stop on our tourist tour was the George H.W. Bush Library. It was my first time to see a presidential library and I was very impressed. It obviously inspired me to try on the "presidential suit" with my cabinet beside me. (It was casual Sunday) My mom was campaign chair for H.W. when he was running for congress so our families were friends and she enjoyed the memories.
I'm the 11 year old with the ponytail, my mom is in the sunglasses next to George W. Bush. We were out campaigning for his daddy.

It was all good...past and present. Connected.


Julia said...

Great weekend...the only thing missing was me. So wish I could have been there for the family dinner and the dancing on stage. You are my twin sister from another mother.

Glad you had a year full of trips to the land that you love. I feel the same way about that place. Perhaps, it is the innocence that we miss but oh, what a childhood that place gave us.

Love you, J

Doojies said...

And we missed you so!!!! Yes, we are sisters because we did share that wonderful childhood and are so much alike. I love you dearly Julia!!!

Becky W. said...

Great post Steph...loved it!!!

Doojies said...

Thanks Beck!!!