Saturday my young friend and I went to Market Street in Allen for breakfast. I had an oatmeal with brown sugar, granola and fresh blackberries. He had an oatmeal with a slightly different configuration. The oatmeals were great.
We decided we should go to a town we'd never visited before. We drove to Gainesville, a bit over an hour away. Gainesville has a lot of history--once the headquarters of its own circus, a lot of somewhat sad Civil War history (pro=-union small farmers oppressed by pro-Confederate planters), and lots of current quarter horse farms. I assumed that downtown we would find a vibrant little coffee shop with free wi-fi. Alas, downtown was full of those little gift shops which, in my view, have scant appeal. They did have the fried pie shop, but two men who recently dined on hearty oatmeal did not need fried pies.
We went to the Game Exchange, which had a mix of reasonably priced and exorbitantly expensive used console games. We glanced at the stores of the outlet mall, all devoted to clothing and other similarly uninteresting items. The local museum was closed until noon. I had been interested in a second museum, the Bomber Bait Museum. It sounded like a home-based museum, and who could resist a fishing bait museum? But we did not seek it out. Instead we decided to hit the road.
We drove to Muenster, less than 20 minutes further down the road. Muenster was settled in the 1880s by German Catholics. Though it now also has a Baptist church to accompany its Catholic church and school, it keeps its German heritage alive. In a town of but 1,500 souls, there are three restaurants that serve German food. Another two places provide baked goods and sausage. We enjoyed a meal at Rohmer's. I had a plate of smoked sausage and bratwurst with sauer kraut, with a slice of coconut cream pie for dessert. Then we went to the brand new public library, which was a lovely small building, just right for the small town. The helpful staff showed us where we could plug in our laptops, and we surfed the internet. Then we stopped by a bakery, where we got a cherry strudel for my friend to take home. This little town set amid open fields on Highway 82 really gets it right.
We drove home listening to youtubes on my car sound system. All the Youtubes were about best and worst games on the XBox console player. I do not own an XBox, but it was oddly interesting.
Once I dropped my friend at his house, I went home and went for a walk in our local little park.
I saw cardinals and mockingbirds and mallards.
My wife and I met our friends Scott and Donna and drove together to the House of Blues. My wife and I's friend's covers band Groovadelix was playing the front room at the House of Blues. The service for our meal was bad, but otherwise the evening was a success. The band was great--a lot of cool covers from Bowie's "Heroes" to the Soul Train theme "TSOP (The Sound of Philadelphia)" to the Don Covay song (recorded by Aretha Franklin) "Chain of Fools" to Adele to George Harrison's "Wah Wah". We know the keyboardist for the band, who is in a club my wife is also in. It was fun to say hi to them.
We left at 9, just as the band was launching into its final number, "Midnight Hour". They played a very tight, nearly spot-on set. We drove back to Plano, reunited our friends with their car, and drove home.