Let’s Go to Luckenbach, Texas….Aint’ Nobody Feelin’ No Pain

With special thanks to Slice of Life for giving writers inspiration, space, and voice

Slice of Life Day 6 of 31: Journeys (my March theme)

Luckenbach, Texas appears to be the size of an outdoor wedding venue with signage declaring a population of 3. There is a small post office and gift shop, a dance hall, a kissing booth where maybe it’s time to get back to the basics of love, a bar where there ain’t nobody feeling no pain, and an outdoor stage with seating to hear Waylon and Willie and the boys.  Our driver on our tour to Texas Hill Country played the song as we arrived. I was already feeling emotional about the loss of my nephew dog, Feivel, who had just been put to sleep from complications of cancer in south Georgia as I traveled between San Antonio and Luckenbach.

Let’s Go to Luckenbach, Texas

I bought postcards (pre-postmarked Luckenbach), affixed the pre-addressed labels and stamps from the supply I carry in my Ziploc bag whenever I travel, and mailed them to family members- a travel tradition that may take me longer to turn loose than the CDs that I finally quit burning two years ago.  Let’s face it – – who needs a Postcard when there’s Facebook to tell everyone for free, and instantly, that you wish they could be there having all the fun with you?

Post Office in Luckenbach, Texas

But this is where I struggle – – how else will my grandchildren know the joy of getting mail if I don’t send them postcards?

The thrill of mail and my emerging concept of all the different cultures of the United States officially started for me when I was a fifth grader at St. Simon’s Island Elementary School in Georgia in the 1970s. In Mrs. Ploeger’s class, I vividly remember completing a worksheet with the words, “Melting Pot or Salad Bowl?” in bold print across the top. We had to do a project on one of the 50 states other than our own, and I eagerly dove right in. Mom bought me a supply of stamps and envelopes, and I wrote letters to the Chambers of Commerce in all 50 states’ capital cities requesting information for my project. I carefully cut out important pieces of the brochures I received in response, gluing them onto pages and creating a thick notebook of information about each state – its state bird, its flower, its nickname, its capital, its population and government. I was so proud of my work that I put it in a blue notebook I had creatively decorated especially for handing in my project. For the first time, I took an active interest in seeing places other than where I lived and learned the value of writing in my learning experience. I was on a vicarious nationwide journey that arrived in our mailbox with stacks of envelopes with my very own name on them! I’m grateful that I grew up in the age of snail mail; webpages could never have held that degree of exhilaration for me.

When the day came to turn in our projects on the back table that had been cleared off for the occasion, most students had put information on posterboards or written a few pages of information on looseleaf paper. My classmates gawked in disbelief at my fifth grade dissertation on all fifty states. I go back to that moment again and again in my mind still today, ever assured that this was the first time I identified as a writer – and more specifically, a writer who wanted to see the world.

That’s why I like to send postcards to my grandchildren – – to spark an interest that may result in a bite from the proverbial travel bug! From pressing flowers to traveling, I want to inspire them to know their world and take the time to enjoy the beauty of it – to sing the songs of places!

Esther 8:10

10  And he wrote in the king Ahasuerus’ name, and sealed it with the king’s ring, and sent letters by posts on horseback, and riders on mules, camels, and young dromedaries:

18 Replies to “Let’s Go to Luckenbach, Texas….Aint’ Nobody Feelin’ No Pain”

  1. WOW!! I loved traveling via words and song to Texas. Then I loved learning about your passion for discovering all 50 states in 5th grade. And then you connected it all to why you still send postcards to your grandkids in 2022, when a text or social media post could be substituted instead. Love that at the end, you let me hear the song again. Very well-crafted slice!! Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sally, thank you for reading – you opened up my eyes to see more in the post than I realized was there. So thank you for commenting! I loved your post today as well. Something about buildings, about architecture, about designing and planning is so thrilling to me. The way the space is defined and thrives with purpose. I often look at a staked out house foundation and wonder about all that will happen on top of that slab. How life will be lived, how people will endure, celebrate, honor moments of life in the coming years, in the walls that will encapsulate the space. Those kids and their building of the planned city was a lovely moment in pictures this morning!

      Like

  2. Oh, Kim. Carrying on the tradition of sending the postcards so grandchildren will know the joy of getting mail…how this brings back memories of the many letters my grandmother wrote to me, enclosing books of stamps so that I could write back without my father complaining that I was using up his. I must start this tradition now that Scout, at 6, can write… although she & Micah have their own categories on my blog, for posterity. These video clips as you travel through the tiny titular setting – too good, as is the weaving of the lyrics in your lines. Yes – let us celebrate place, the beauty of places, and all that they evoke in words and song.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Fran, for always inspiring and encouraging me – I’m thinking about a grandmother category for my own grandchildren now, perhaps related to tradition and legacy and recipes and travel and celebrations and…..well, moments. You keep me thinking. Oh, the stamps of my life. I bought 84.00 worth the other day and I walked out of the post office asking myself, “Did I just buy 84.00 worth of stamps? Who needs $84.00 worth of stamps?” Apparently I do. Like your grandmother, I also send stamps with correspondence so that those I love will write back. I asked for a few pages of the Raven stamps to celebrate Poe, and the postmaster told me that someone had been in a few days prior complaining that those were the ugliest stamps they had ever seen. And me? I love them! Nevermore, nevermore rings in my head as I place them in their sweet spot in the corner. Cheers to the beauty of place, of stamps, of people!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Your post this morning certainly took me on a journey through your thinking. As I was reading your last lines, I was thinking that it had been a very long time since I had sent or received a post card! Then, I remembered that there really hasn’t been any travel for a long time! Soon, I will join you in sending postcards to incite that travel bug.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Anita, thank you for reading and commenting today. My theme is journeys, so I’m inspired that I took you on one through my thinking. I may have to step back and think about that – – a journey of thought – – as a way I’ve been taken on those kinds of journeys through writers. This group of slicers is full of those kinds of journeys, but we don’t always think about it that way, so thank you for framing it in those words.

      Like

  4. I love sending postcards to my niece and nephew…I was just telling my friend today that I haven’t traveled anywhere in nearly two years, so I haven’t sent them any postcards, but I really should send them some from here, because while it’s my home, it’s still another country and they’d love it. Thanks for sharing your love of traveling and writing with us! I’m actually from Texas, but I’ve never been to Luckenbach before.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for reading and commenting today! It’s interesting that you mention sending some from right where we live. I’ve often thought about making my own small town, rural postcard and using them for correspondence. I am fascinated with mail – – and home is just as exciting and as here on the planet as anywhere else in the wide world. You inspire me to want to create a Pike County, Georgia postcard! Oh, and Luckenbach is really small but full of pop and personality of its own unique air. I’m so glad I was there. It’s more like a state of mind that stays with you than a popular travel destination, as it is a bit off the beaten path. But when in Texas…….if you’re close……it may reach out to you and call your name.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. This is so great. I completely agree that there is something particularly inspiring about getting a letter or post card in the actual mailbox…but at the same time, this post is ever so much better with the bookend video and audio. I’ve never been to anything but the airport in Texas, and this gave me images that drew me in…like I might actually want to go to Texas. I still have a lot of the post cards my grandmother sent me…and a file cabinet full of the correspondences between my father and his family back in Sweden. I think I remember a moment when I first felt like a writer. I may write a slice about it now…Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for reading and commenting today. Those postcards would make a beautiful series, like a theme of blog posts. Oh, how fun that would be to look back over letters and cards from the past and bring them right into 2022 as a balm of healing from yesteryear. Yes, yes! Write your blog about the moment you knew you were a writer. I’d love to see when this whole group became writers. What was it? Because we need to know those inspirations to sow more seeds.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I don’t recall when I first saw myself as a writer, although I do remember some writing successes and important writing moments. Travel, however, the desire to see the world, has been an aspiration at least since I was seven. I’m sure reading first sparked my sense of wonder. I watched the videos, Kim, and I feel deeply that longing to sing the songs of places and spark the joy of travel in grandchildren. Before my granddaughter moved to Iowa w/ her mom, we took her on several summer vacations: Yellowstone first since it’s so close, Disneyland, San Francisco and Yosemite w/ my brother and his family; Universal Studios, and a cruise to Alaska. I’d hoped the travel would inspire her and keep her longing to be part of our lives.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glenda, wow! You are definitely instilling the love of travel in the next generation. Yellowstone! What a dream! Now that the show is out, I predict that this will be a pretty crowded place once people start traveling again. I’d love to go there someday – it’s one that was mentioned to put on our list. Your travel pictures always amaze me. I thought of you when I decided to take the day trip into Hill Country, the way you came to Savannah and ended up three hours away on a side trip to Macon. I almost didn’t go – and then I remembered your pictures from your trip with your sister and thought, “Glenda did this. I can do this.” And I did. Because of you.

      Like

  7. I think postcards are an absolutely fine tradition – keep up the fun! I love how you planned for it in advance; I will approach my next trip with this wisdom. Loved this! Loved the sign of Luckenbach, population 3 – my goodness!

    Like

  8. Fantastic! I ;ove that song and I love your post! Our own children studied the National Parks in third grade which eventually led us on a 40 day cross country trip to nine of them. So cool to see this great country of ours.

    Like

Leave a Reply to Anita Ferreri Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: