03.05.15 – Texas – Day 3, Nacodoches – Sulpher Springs

My poor body is still not in sync and I woke up at 4am again, full of the joys of spring and ready for the day.  Try as I might I couldn’t get back to sleep!

Our plan was to head towards Dallas today.  We knew we wouldn’t make it all the way to Dallas as we had some things planned to do on the way so we would stop nearish to it and carry on in the morning.

20150503_094332 The first thing on the itinerary was Caddo Burial Mounds. The site housed a village of Caddo Indians more than 1,200 years ago.  Today the site still has two platform mounds and one burial mounds.  It sounded fascinating and I was delighted to learn that neither hubby nor my in-laws had been there before.  I love Indian culture and history.

We arrived shortly after it opened and had the place to ourselves.  The hosts were welcoming, friendly and very knowledgeable, especially Anthony who spent a lot of time with hubby discussing the history of the Caddo Indians and answering questions.  Anthony was a mine of information and clearly loved his job.  This rea20150503_094303lly came across and I can’t praise him enough. Also, he had a gorgeous Georgia accent (I’ve got a bit of a things for accents!  Have you noticed?) and I could listen to him read the phonebook!  They seemed a bit surprised that we were from the UK and had come to see the mounds!

The site consisted of a visitors centre and a 0.7 mile walk around the trail to look at the mounds. We wer20150503_094747e offered a golf buggy but preferred to walk which was definitely the right decision.

It was a perfect day with clear blue skies and such peaceful tranquility with just the noise of the insects in the field to break the silence.  It was easy to look at the site and envision how it must have been back then.  I love that this site has been preserved and that people are coming here.

Today was ‘free’ day.  We didn’t know that when we came and the site was running all kinds of activities like animal tracking and plant identification.  It is a bit like the things that Kent Wildlife Trusts do at their sites.  If you are ever in Texas I’d definitely recommend that you take a trip to Caddo Burial Mounds.

20150503_123126After we’d finished it was almost lunchtime so we headed on to Henderson where we stopped in Denny’s for lunch.  I adore Denny’s and wish they were available in the UK.  They are kind of the equivalent of Beefeater in the UK but they are so much nicer.  There is so much on the menu that I would eat which is quite unusual as I’m so fussy.  I adore skillets so it was a no brainer for me.  I had to have a skillet with tortillas for lunch!  That was me in piggy heaven!  Service can be a bit variable and I got my meal (minus tortillas) about 5 minutes before everybody else got theirs.  I also ordered these delicious pancake hush puppy things.  On the menu they looked light and fluffy but when they turned up they were rock hard, over cooked and very, very brown!  As the waitress put them down she said ‘it’s up to you whether you eat them or not but I wouldn’t!’…..well at least she was honest!  I politely declined, they were taken off the bill and we were given an extra 10% discount which was nice of them.

After lunch (and this is one of my favourite parts of the holiday to date!), we wandered into the shop next door which was connected to Denny’s.  It was like the shops you get in petrol stations.  It sold everything and nothing.  I was delighted to discover Krispy Kreme Juniors and doughnut holes.  I settled for the Krispy Kreme Juniors which were small, bite sized (if you have a big mouth like me!), powdered sugar, Krispy Kreme doughnuts.  If I was in piggy heaven before, I don’t know what I’m in now!  I am so enthusiastic when it comes to food and America ticks so many boxes for me.  It’s just as well I don’t live here because I’d be the size of a house!

We went to pay and as she was putting our items though, the lady who was serving us said ‘Y’all aren’t from around here huh?’.  When we told her we were from London I thought she was going to explode with excitement!!  She was so excited and enthusiastic.  London is her favourite place in the world she told us.  She has never been there but for her it would be the trip of a lifetime.  She keeps telling her husband that the need to go there.  She was so excited to meet people from London.  I’m smiling as I write this because her energy and enthusiasm was catching!  She was so sweet!

I told her that it was the same for me with Texas, this for me is the trip of a lifetime.  I’ve always wanted to come here and to visit the Deep South.  These are my must haves in the USA.  I told her I was falling in love with Texas and didn’t think I was going to leave.  This earned me a high five from her colleague!  I love that everybody is so patriotic here and proud of their state.  Her colleague offered to let me live in her barn or in her mum’s trailer!  I was absolutely delighted!  I’d love to stay here.  If I had no commitments it would be a serious consideration (though not in this lady’s barn, as kind as the offer is!).

One of the highlights of the trip so far has been the people we have met along the way.  I know we are unlikely to see them again but their stories and the things they share, simply meeting them is great and adds flavour to the trip.

20150503_153134 20150503_144342 Once we’d said our goodbyes we moved on to Jefferson which the book describes a quaint southern community.  When we got there they were just finishing up a civil reenactment day which meant the town was fairly busy.  I didn’t find Jefferson as friendly as some of the places I have been to on this trip.  That’s not to say it is unfriendly, far from it.  I didn’t immediately fall in love with it either as it felt a bit too touristy for me though this could have been because of the civil reenactment day that had taken place.

If you ever visit Jefferson be sure to pay a visit to Jefferson General Store which is an absolute treasure trove o20150503_144255f stuff!  There is so much to see that you can’t take it all in at first glance!  The ice cream is delicious too.  I had wedding cake which tasted to me like cookie dough ice cream without the cookie dough, hubby had some kind of chocolate concoction which was delicious. Be sure to look out for the gorgeous old blue truck parked out the front!

We stayed in Sulpher Springs that evening and we decided to make dinner a simple affair.  Father-in-law fancied Long John Silvers which is a fish and chip chain restaurant.  I’m not keen on fish and chips (how strange with me being English and all!!) but there was a Taco Bell in the same building so I was able to try that for the first time.  It was quite nice but I’d like to see how it compares to a local Mexican restaurant.  There is probably no contest at all!!  Hubby bought some gorgeous cinnabon balls to take away.  They were filthy things that were served warm with a cream cheese middle.  Delicious and probably horribly calorific…the best things usually are!!

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