Marrying a Texan meant learning about Bluebonnets. The bluebonnet is to Texas what the shamrock is to Ireland, the lily is to France, the tulip is Holland. (Jack Maguire, Historian ~ Texas Bluebonnet Sightings)
For many years, I never saw one, since our trips to Texas never coincided with their flowering. I gathered their fragility and beauty from paintings – especially by JulianOnderdonk and W.A. Slaughter. Over the past years, I have only seen sightings as we whizzed along some highway. Today, we went bluebonnet hunting in Ennis Texas.
Small Texas towns are neat – reminding me of small towns in Western Maryland and the Eastern Shore. Today, Ennis turned its Main Street into a promenade of booths where Texas artists, crafters, cooks and hobbyists sold their wares, whetting our appetite for First Monday in Canton, TX.
No, bluebonnets don’t grow in town. So, after sampling grilled cactus tacos, we headed off to roads marked as good vantage points to perhaps catch a glimpse of has inspired Texas painters for a century. Even though Ennis is small, its outskirts unfold for miles. We drove past a few sprawling ranches, seeing Black Angus cattle, horses, and several acres of recently ploughed black land prairie. What would the first settlers have thought seeing what we saw, unencumbered by telephone poles, fences, houses and highways?
I am glad I wasn’t one of them, lovely as the imagine vista was – it was good to speed back to Big D in air-conditioned comfort, sipping ice water and listening to Prairie Home Companion.
I may not have much of a pioneering spirit – but I wish did have Mr. Onderdonk’s or Mr. Slaughter’s talent, though – however, recapturing this wonderful day’s scenery may be my next painting!
|Me Trying to Snap Doug Snapping Bluebonnets!|