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Houston, We Have A Problem

A Houston intersection. Photos by Dana Jones

Have you been to Houston? I love coming to Quilt Market and International Quilt Festival except for one thing: I really don't like the maze of highways and frontage roads that are layered level upon level. My GPS can't handle it, and I don't seem to remember the nuances of driving in Houston from year to year. When there are multiple roads atop one another and woven around each other, my GPS gets confused. Me too. My GPS shows I'm on an expressway when I'm on a frontage road and vice versa. Today it told me to make a slight right onto 610 south. One problem. 610 south was closed. It went silent. Like me, it was trying to get its bearings.

In the end, all was well. I found my way back to my RV park where Emma (my camper) was waiting. En route, I found a Fiesta grocery store just a mile from the park. Why Fiesta? I like to start my day with half a bottle of Mexican Coke. This morning, I polished off the last of the bottles I brought from home. When a 16-mile round trip to a Costco store proved futile in terms of finding this delicacy, I headed back to the campground. Then the Fiesta store appeared. A mirage perhaps? No, it was real, and it was well stocked with Mexican Coke. My mornings here in Houston will have that touch of caffeine I crave. Haven't tried it? If you're in my age range and remember the Coke of your youth, you must try Mexican Coke. The taste is nostalgic. The secret: Cane sugar.

Rain on the highway. Photo by Dana Jones

By the time I retreated into Emma for the night, I was exhausted. It was an unexpectedly long day getting from San Antonio to Houston. The usual half-day, 200-mile trip turned into an eight-hour trek because driving rain, low visibility and road construction created the not-so-perfect storm. We crawled at 30-40 mph much of the way.

Meanwhile Back Home, Snow Was the Precipitation of the Hour

While en route to Houston, I missed the first real snowstorm of the season at my home in Gilpin County, Colorado. I didn't get final accumulation totals but Facebook posts made it clear that the white stuff snarled traffic on all four of the canyons that lead down the mountain from my home all day Wednesday into Thursday morning.

This is not unusual for late October yet many of us in the county act shocked each year when the first storm hits. A week or two from now, we'll be back in the groove.

Snow on my deck in Gilpin County, Colorado.

Photo by Steve Sky, artist and dog/house sitter


I had snow tires put on my car before leaving home, knowing I may need them when I head home from Houston in about 10 days. In past years driving home from quilt festival, I've encountered snow on Raton Pass in northern New Mexico, overnight at Trinidad State Park in southern Colorado, and on the various canyon roads I take up from Golden, Colorado, to my home. My car dealer is usually sure I'm getting them on too early. When it snows within a few days, I feel vindicated. It is surprising how often this happens.

Sign Up Now to Make This Quick & Easy Holiday Table Runner

"Prancing Around" by Dana Jones

If you're in need of a last minute holiday gift, a hostess gift or a decoration for your home, I'm offering three classes in early December that fit the bill. These are quick and easy projects you can whip up before you know it. You can customize them to the holidays you celebrate with your fabric choices.

These four-hour classes are just $40 each or all three for $100, a savings of $20. You'll find information on the classes on my website. Just go to my home page and scroll down to find descriptions of each class and links to register. I can't think of a better way to kick off this holiday season than to be with you in any and all of these classes. I hope you'll sign up.

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