Thursday, March 29, 2007

Road trips reveal mysteries

"In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength..." Isaiah 30:15

I know I haven't typed in a while...I've been quiet and trusting.

Here are a couple things on my mind today:

How many birthplaces could Texas possibly have?

At the intersection of Highway 225 and Center Street in Deer Park, Texas, is a sign that reads, "Welcome to Deer Park, The Birthplace of Texas."

I get a chuckle now each time I drive past it. A few weeks ago I took a roadtrip up to Austin and San Antonio for a few days, enjoying the beauty of the Texas hill country and frankly, two cool cities. On the way up, I passed a sign somewhere on 290 that reads, "Welcome to Washington County, The Birthplace of Texas."

I figured someone at the Alamo could tell me which is actually the birthplace, so while I was in S.A. I stopped by. A man very well-versed in Texas history gave an excellent presentation on the battle of the Alamo. I pulled him aside after his talk and asked him the question.

Guess what?

According to him, the Alamo is the birthplace of Texas. Could someone please email me and let me know where this state was born? Shouldn't folks come to a consensus on something as important as the birthplace of Texas before printing it on multiple signs and posting it on several different Web sites?

I was born only at Memorial Hermann in the medical center. That will never change. I can't say I was born in two or three different places. Although I experienced the "second birth" (John 3: 3-7) in Deer Park -- one of the many birthplaces of Texas.

I started thinking about this because I caught a portion of Jay Leno last night and he was talking about roadtrips with a guest. I love roadtrips. I enjoy them so much I video them.

I was so excited about taking a week of leave from the Marines to visit Houston in 1993, I decided to video the drive from Barstow for some reason. Long streches of I-10, a $5-a-night room at Ft. Bliss in El Paso, and strange roadside structures made by UFOs all comprise this nine-minute yawning festival.

I warned you. Why did I hang on to this videotape for so long? Why would I shoot such a video? Maybe, subconsciously, I wanted to hang on to a piece of nostalgia that could always remind me that no matter where this life leads, I can always find a road to Houston.

Maybe it's not quite so deep. Maybe I just wanted to videotape a long drive.