Thursday 30 August, 2012

Days 74 to 77 – Houston


I’m visiting Houston to see Jack and Marilyn Van Hesteren, Sally’s dad and his wife. It’s a huge sprawling metropolis. The lack of zoning gives it an unusual flavor, with industrial areas mixed with subdivisions mixed with retail space. It’s expanding at an astounding rate, with over 500 square miles and growing every day. A [...]


I’m visiting Houston to see Jack and Marilyn Van Hesteren, Sally’s dad and his wife. It’s a huge sprawling metropolis. The lack of zoning gives it an unusual flavor, with industrial areas mixed with subdivisions mixed with retail space. It’s expanding at an astounding rate, with over 500 square miles and growing every day. A chunk of city the size of San Francisco is added to Houston every couple of years. Its the Winchester Mystery City!

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My first morning there jack and I went to the bowling alley to knock some pins down (or in my case throw balls past them at exactly the right distance to keep from hitting them). I met Harry Pepper, local bowler who is 102 years old and still bowls every week. That morning he threw a 180 game.
We went to another alley and played for a few hours. Got some good tips from jack and some bad tips from his friend Don (they played good cop bad cop all afternoon).

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My bike was long overdue for an oil change, so I took it to a shop a few miles away. I talked with the mechanics who raced the annual Vegas to Reno run and we chatted about vintage 80s bikes in general and sporting two strokes in particular. Afterwards I visited a really cool record shop called Cactus Music.

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Recently Jack had bought a .22 Ruger and an air rifle second hand from a neighbor and I could tell he was itching to try them out.  Jack is still a fine shot, he spent the afternoon obliterating the center of his targets with hundreds of tiny holes.

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My last day we went fishing on a little bit property in NW Houston that Jack helped to create for his church. There was a peaceful pond with a covered pier to fish from. It was the quintessential fishing day. We each caught some sunfish and bluegill, a bass or two and I fought a catfish and a turtle. It’s a catch and release pond, so all of them lived to swim another day.

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Towards evening it began to rain, turning to a downpour as we traveled home. We picked up some middle eastern food for appetizers which I served up as Jack made dinner.

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One Comment

  • Jack VanHesteren says:

    Thanks for your commentary on your visit to Houston, Scott. Stan Anderson is the other pal who joined us at the shooting range, and shared his M1911A-1 .45 cal.Automatic Pistol. Harry Pepper–my 102 yr old bowling pal–is currently bowling 3 leagues every week, and is carrying a 140 average. We all enjoyed your visit immensely, and certainly enjoyed your introduction to more of the mediterranean cuisine.


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