163. Houston, Harris County

Some friends of mine have been talking about making a trip down here for quite a while. And we had some special impetus to do so. That’s why we all piled into a van and went! Two of us had our own side missions to attend to: one person wanted to visit the Davis Meat Market to pick up some legitimate cracklins and boudin, and I wanted to photograph a courthouse. I didn’t do a full walk around because a) I had people waiting on me and b) it was really hot, especially after we had completed our primary mission. But the functioning courthouse shared a square with…

…the old courthouse. A lovely creature, no? A little part of me is regretting not walking around, but I have more than enough reason to return here on my own so I may come back to the courthouses for a more thorough visit. But we had just come from doing what needed to be done. And this one, for me, needed to be done soon.

Welcome to the Battleship Texas. This beautiful old dame possesses a number of superlatives: second oldest dreadnought still in existence; served in both WWs One and Two; five campaign stars during WW2; first with AA guns, to use computerized targeting, and to launch an airplane; and many other things. For our purposes, however, the important bit is that there is a virtual here. Even more important is that it needed to be claimed soon. You see, the Texas is being moved in the near future (by the end of the year, they say) so I can’t say how long the virtual will remain. It filled a Jasmer hole, too. That, and we wanted to see some big guns…

Apparently, a lot of people had the same thought. A ranger told us that this was the busiest they had seen in years, probably because the preparation for the move was set to begin two days after we left (about a month ago as of publishing) and everyone wanted to see it before the process began. Once it’s contents are packed up and moved, the ship repaired, and then placed in a new location and reopened, about five years will probably elapsed. We also happened to check in another nearby location that also happened to have a virtual.

Welcome to the San Jacinto Battlefield. This where Texan forces won the final battle of the Texas Revolution. And that giant column column, the tallest masonry column in the world? It marks the battlefield. And we went up to the top.

What a view, no? The virtual was claimed and more shenanigans were had. Most importantly, the guys and I had one heck of a day out. Of course, there’s a world of other caches around Houston and even ones in this park, so I’ll be back. This is probably not the last you’ll see of this place from me, but this was a fun, between roadtrip trip. The real road trip began a few weeks later in…

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