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September 23, 2016     Post-Gazette
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September 23, 2016

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AG_ E 4 POST-GAZETT_E, SEPTEMBER 23, 2016 [l'., ' "I'm Much Too Young To Be This Damn Old" My nephew's family, Dominic IIl, Dominic IV, Shafecca (front row). Helen and Victoria (back row). These are some of the lyrics was non-stop, the only way to of a good country song I heard fly. You couldn't pay me to take on the radio this morning. Since an eight-hour flight with stops coming home from another seemingly at every street comer. great T xas vacation, I've been This year was also a first for listening to country music. This me, a Labor Day Weekend va- was my twelfth trip to Texas. cation to Corpus Christi inside Mostly, I visit Austin, the state my vacation to Austin. Never capital where my nephew re- been to that city before. It is sides with his family, right on the Gulf of Mexico and This coming November will be I ended up finding myself in 90 the 50th anniversary of my first plus degree waters. Oh, what Texas trip. It was involuntary, a day at the beach that was! I I enlisted in the United States ended up taking a tour of the Air Force after graduating from USS Lexington which was next Boston English High School. It to the silky, sandy beach. The took eight hours and nine stop- ship was built at the Quincy overs before we arrived in San Shipyard right here and saw Antonio, just outside Lackland action in World War.II. Today, it Air Force Base. is a naval museum and a great Who would have known back tourist attraction. then that Texas would become Austin for most of the sum- my favorite getaway destina- mer was hot with rain, lots of tion, huh? This year's vacation rain, which was unusual for Downtown Austin, like Boston in a constant building boom. f INSURANCE ALBANO F. PONTE, CEP Financial and Estate Planning Email afponte @ Phone 617-320-0022 MICHAEL F. NOBILE, CPCU mnobile @ BOSTON MEDFORD 30 Prince Street 39 Salem Street Boston, MA 02113 Medford, MA 02155 (617) 523-6766 (781) 395-4200 Fax (617) 523-0078 Fax (781) 391-8493 J Texas Pride is everywhere. them. Everything was so green down there and Boston in a drought looks like what Austin should look like with yellow hay for grass. It rained more than usual for me down there on vacation, but it also was hot, hot, hot. Every day, the Texas heat took over and the temps were in the high 90s and the humidity was pretty bad. I went to the pool every day to cool off. I can now travel aroundeverywhere with- out need of my GPS. I no longer feel like a Texas tourist. Just Uncle Sal visiting his nephew and family. I look forward to these trips and so do the Texas Giarratani family. I went to a real Texas rodeo down in Wimberley, Texas, just outside of Austin after passing through Driftwood on Route 1826. Stopped by a great flea market with 19 acres of cool junk you can't do without. Picked me up a cool LBJ style cowboy hat for only twenty bucks. The guy wanted $50, but I knew the place was closing soon. I offered $15, he said no. I upped to $20 and he reluc- tantly took it, after I told him the twenty bucks was better than no bucks. I got the hat and as I was leaving I heard him say, "Damn Northemersf Austin has food trucks just like Boston. This is a growing business across the country. I found a great one at the comer of Third and Congress right next to a shoeshine guy polishing his act on the walkways. Told me he was from Philly and try- ing to bring back a lost art. I was wearing my Nikes. No sale from me. The food truck was called "Kabobalicious," and of course I had a kabob wrap. Who would have thought that in Texas I would be eating kabob over ribs? On the last whole day of my vacation, I went down to Lake Austin at the end of downtown and took four plus power walks around the lake in 97 degree temperature. The walk was great and everyone walking or jogging talked to each other, all just trying to stay healthy for as long as humanly possible. Oh, by the way, the Margari tas are so strong down there, all the bars have a two-Margarita limit. Can I tell you, finishing one wasn't possible? It was that strong. Oh, I had some Texas Chili too. So hot that my eyes started crying and my mouth smoking. It wasn't easy saying good- bye to Texas once again, but I will return, as General Douglas MacArthur once said. Also fly- ing back to Logan, it made me appreciate Boston, too. Vaca- tions do have to end, and now I am back in my reality for a while again. I DIAMONDS 1 FIO/..EX ESTATE JEWELRY Bought & Sold Jewelers Exch. Bldg. Jim (617) 263-7766 Kabobalicious Food Truck, Graham, Maegen and K/eran at your service. Halloween Texas-style. Lake Austin is their Charles R/ver. Engine 1 - Austin Fire Department crew-members, I R: Joshua Lake, Nathan Jones, Bill Kessler, and Joey Schwab.