This past week found me traveling through much of central Texas for business and pleasure. It was interesting to note the character of the different communities, when it came to materials used to construct their homes, and how they were decorated. However, stopping and talking to people was of the greatest interest to me.
On Sunday afternoon, you could find me outside of a church in Spicewood, which is just outside of Austin, sitting in the shade of a tree with my tea, speaking to an artist from Germany, who is now living in our fair state. I was admiring a cross that she had made from timber, copper, and driftwood, so we spoke about her work. We swapped birdhouse designs as the hummingbirds flew past.
Our conversation turned to life in different cities, with a focus on commuting. She was going to return home to pick up some pieces to deliver to Fredricksburg later. She was not looking forward to the drive under our Texas’ sun, but it was one that she needed to make. She mentioned how travelling around was easier in Europe, where she did not need a car. Her vitriol was directed to the traffic jams of my city, Houston. She did not see how I could live with it. I mentioned that I heard a report the Judge Emmet was looking into reviving commuter rail in the region. Much of the infrastructure is here, but it is used for other purposes. She did not believe that Houston would go that route.
Upon coming back home, I find an e-mail informing me that my region is moving ahead with commuter rail. I guess that high fuel costs bring about unexpected benefits. At first, I thought that the plans would just be between Houston and Galveston, but I discovered that it will be much more than that. The plan has its critics, but mainly it seems that people are complaining that they are not included, rather than having rail come by them. Well, we are just in the first steps, and there does seem to be a desire to make such a system work, so I feel that eventually the rail will be more inclusive. I would like to see if this system will somehow tie into the light rail lines that are now being built to pull the city together.
We are still in the proposal period for this development, so your voice can be heard, if you wish to comment about the routes or plans. Follow this link to read them for your self.
If only they had a train to take me to a tree in the Hill Country for a peaceful Sunday afternoon, I would be ever so happy.