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Written by Texas Highways

MagicOften where we travel and why is motivated by food, whether a journey charted to find new favorites or a desire to return to a place where a great meal—or maybe just a slice of pie—was once memorably enjoyed.

Baytown Race TrackJust east of Houston, where sandy soil meets swampy waters, there’s a town that thrives in the humid breezes of Southeast Texas.

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Just outside the quaint East Texas town of Mount Vernon, County Road 2025 stretches ahead like a postcard from the past. An unbroken tree canopy arches over a narrow dirt road, forming a two-tone traveler’s tunnel—green on top, brown on bottom. I fully expect a Model T Ford to round the bend any moment.

Fort Concho35Some say my lodging for this evening—the commander’s quarters at historic Fort Concho—is home to a ghost. About 13 years ago, an overnight visitor reported seeing the apparition of a cheerful, mild-mannered girl in the building, wearing a peach-colored dress with her hair pulled back.

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As a Tex-Mex-deprived Northeasterner, I try to get my spicy food fix as often as possible during my annual weeklong visit to see family in Texas, and there’s no place more satisfying for Tex-Mex and ice-cold margaritas than the Original Ninfa’s on Navigation.


At Sweetie Pie’s Ribeyes, a popular restaurant across the street from the pink granite Wise County Courthouse in Decatur, there’s no ambiguity about the house specialty.

GonzFlagWhen empresario Green DeWitt was given approval from the Mexican government in 1825 to establish a 400-family colony in south Texas, there was no evidence to suggest that these new residents would become revolutionaries as well as pioneers. But it’s safe to say that the Mexicans would go on to regret their support of this expansionism.

butterflyI’ll confess. I’m addicted to butterflies.

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I grew up in a Texas family that does country-western music. The lilt of a fiddle breakdown, the rhythm of a shuffle drum beat, the soulful wail of a steel guitar—these sounds seeped into my pores in the 1950s and ’60s, forevermore setting a button on my internal radio dial to “classic country.”

doseumNow that my son August is on the cusp of turning five years old, he’s stumbled upon the concept of “infinity” to express a world that is becoming larger and more awe-inspiring by the day. “Can you count to infinity?” “The redwood trees—are they infinity big?”

Ghost Finish 1The once-bustling river port of Jefferson has been saluted for many things: the state’s first gas streetlights, one of the state’s first breweries and, my personal favorite, an abundance of ghosts. The satisfyingly entertaining and quirky town is no been-there-done-that destination.

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Back in 1973, times were simple on Acacia Lake Drive. Our family had just moved to Brownsville from Mexico City. I was a 10-year-old fisherman who, while in Mexico, used to practice casting with my Zebco rod and reel into the empty lot next door.

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