Saturday, September 29, 2007

Let's not get testy...

We are at a Wal-Mart off Westheimer Road in southwest Houston (map). We're here because we made dinner reservations at one of our clubs last night, the Houston City Club, and the mapping software said this was the closest Wal-Mart. Interestingly, it's the exact same place we stayed 18 months ago for the same purpose, even though that stay was for a different club. We learned last night that the club we visited then, the University Club, has since closed. They were in the Galleria Mall and apparently could not get a suitable renewal on their lease. In any case, one of the things we remembered from that stay was easy access to transit from here, and we were able to get to dinner easily last night on a single bus, although returning required a transfer. $2 buys you a 24-hour bus pass here, which is a great deal.

Now that we're completely done in Houston, we're a bit adrift -- we want to remain in the southeast for the rest of hurricane season, but we have no specific destination or plans on the agenda. Cooler temperatures to the north are tempting, to get us out of the heat and humidity here, but that seems like a lot of "wasted" driving if we will just end up back on the gulf coast anyway. There is a nice state park on Galveston Island, where we can get power for the air conditioners, and jump in the gulf waters for a refreshing swim, and perhaps we'll spend a few days there while we watch Karen and Melissa to see if either will become a landfall storm.

That concludes today's update, however I am going to use my bully pulpit here to respond to a comment posted yesterday. Apparently, I offended a reader, or at least bruised his Texas pride, with my comments about Traders Village. The comment torqued Louise so much that she also responded, in the comments section.

First off, I'd like to point out that I did not actually make any "negative comments" about the flea market -- I simply used the word "thankfully" when describing the fact that our visit did not overlap with it. And one of the key reasons we are thankful is that we did not have to compete with flea market traffic either on our way in or way out of the RV park -- it's very clear from the layout of the roadways and position of the "toll booths" (which we had to transit each way) where they collect the entrance/parking fees for the event that we would have had some issues with this. Now that's hardly a commentary on the quality of the event.

But more importantly, whether or not the event is high quality for a flea market, as, apparently, both the Chronicle and Business Journal opine, the simple fact is that we detest flea markets. Now, if that fact offends you, perhaps you're reading the wrong blog. But, c'mon -- if you told me you couldn't stand Chinese food, it would be sort of foolish of me to rant at you that a particular Chinese restaurant was the best in town, and how dare you disparage it.

I did make rather negative comments about the RV park, which I said was "depressing." Nevertheless, you will note that we stayed four nights, so clearly we found value in it. If you've been following along with us here for any length of time, you will know our parking preferences: ideally, we'll be someplace where we can't see or hear any other rigs. Good places are some of the federal and state lands where there is a good 30' or more of separation between sites, typically with some sort of vegetation to provide additional separation. This isn't because we're anti-social (although perhaps we are, to a degree) -- we're happy to sit around in the picnic pavilion with you, drinking wine and telling war stories. It's because Odyssey is our home, not a recreational toy, and, when we retire for the evening, we value our privacy. Having a rig on either side only six feet away is definitely not conducive to privacy -- the blinds need to be completely closed after dark, which means no windows open for fresh air, etc.

Now, we do occasionally stay at truck stops, where there are rigs even closer than this on both sides (albeit generally without windows looking in on us), and plenty of random parking lots. And I'm not on here posting about the lack of privacy there. But neither are they charging us $30 per night for the privilege. And, frankly, we find Wal-Mart to actually be more private than this sort of side-by-side RV park -- the cars are too low to see inside, and it is rare indeed for another rig to come in and park right alongside us. So I stand by my remarks -- the RV park was great, inasmuch as it was where we needed it to be and had the electric power we needed for this visit. But, absent a pressing reason to be there, it is not the sort of place in which we would choose to while away our time.

1 comment:

  1. Sean, I agree with you and I also find it amusing what some people get their hackles up about. Keep on posting, enjoy reading your adventures. Spyderman


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