From My Mother’s Journal 1970:
Monday August 24
Finally got a good night’s sleep. We have officially been on the road nine weeks. After breakfast drove and drove and drove around Dallas to get to 6 Flags Over Texas. $24 cash to get in.
The Chevy Show was misnamed. I thought it would be about cars but instead you sit in a seat and the screen in front of you showed a front view from a helicopter, fast cars, boats, planes, and a snowmobile as if you were a passenger in these. It almost made me seasick.
The run-away mine train was an honest to goodness roller-coaster, which Jon, Becky and R enjoyed. Jeff and I went on the “Mine-Train”, a bit tamer ride.
We had thought that 6 Flags Over Texas would be a lot bigger than AstroWorld, but it isn’t true. Besides, AstroWorld is constantly adding on new rides and growing bigger.
We did notice that 6-Flags was very clean and appreciated the nicely cooled bathrooms. I guess my favorite ride was the spelunkers’ Cave with its splashes of cool spray.
The kids liked the Spindletop.
With meals, snacks, parking and entrance fee the day costs us over $40. I can’t imagine what a larger family would cost. That was for four people and a child.
We spent Sunday and Monday night at the Holiday Inn. R remarked that for 2 nights, 2 breakfasts, and 1 supper, it cost about $22.00 a day less than the Holiday Inn in Chicago.
Tuesday August 25
We heard on the news last night that Houston ranks #6 in nation for population and Dallas was #8. I’ve been thinking about the kids going to school next Monday August 31st. We’ll have Jeff in Elementary School, Jon in Jr. High, Becky in High School, and Bobby in college.
On Highway 75 going towards Houston I’ve noticed how dry and brown the grass is along the roadway. A big truck was spraying water on the trees in the median – I guess trying to keep them alive. The stretch of road between Streetman and Buffalo was not highway and seemed very dangerous – with cars passing too fast or cars moving too slow, dangerous driving. There were signs that said “Daylight Test Area – Turn On Headlights” on this stretch. We stopped at one Nickerson Farms that had a sign that said “Shirts and shoes required inside”, so I guess they’d had some problems.
It has been our experience on this trip that some places should have a sign that reads “only those who bathe daily and use deodorant will be admitted.”
Stopped at Huntsville State Park for 1 hour between 4 & 5 PM. It is not crowded today. Apparently there have been two days of rain here added to the fact that all school districts except Houston Independent School District began yesterday. The park was great, not too hot. Jon and Jeff went fishing but didn’t catch anything. It made a nice break to rest even if it cost $1.00 just to get in. I approve of this entry fee as it does eliminate some undesirables (those who would trash up the park and not bathe).
We would have used our camper exclusively if 1) all parks had clean, working showers, and flush toilets. And plenty of them. It is ridiculous to find one shower for women and one shower for men in a camper ground that is housing three-hundred campers. And wouldn’t it be nice if those showers had hot water as advertised and not SUN-WARMED water available at 3 in the afternoon only. WHY do females throw their personal sanitation wear in the toilet and block up the sewer system for an entire campground?
We would have used our camper exclusively if 2) the camp ground guide-book had been more explicit as in if there are TWO campgrounds with the SAME name within a few miles of each other this was made known so there would be no confusion.
We would have used our camper exclusively if 3) our tent had been more waterproof.
We would have used our camper exclusively if 4) we hadn’t been so crowded. As the kids have gotten bigger so there just wasn’t enough room. Even though our camper sleeps six, it was elbow-to-elbow all the time. Cramped space makes for gripes and complaints from everyone.
One thing that we noticed, during this camping season, was that common courtesy and decency were sadly lacking. What happened to “regard for others?” The experience was so unlike past years. Why was this year so different? True, there were a few friendly campers, but as a whole those were the exception rather than the rule. This was strange. We all noticed it.
As we get closer to Houston the grass is greener along the road. We just entered Harris County at 5:40 PM. Mileage 59,569 Gas here is 31 cents a gallon. Good to be home!
Noticed a sign in Houston “Time ripens all things, no man is born wise”. In other words like the Pennsylvania Dutch saying “Too soon old – Too late smart”.
They say things in a different way up north, they drive faster and with less regard for other drivers, they act abruptly toward each other and strangers, but we found the exceptions to those generalities, too. We aren’t that much different, them and us.
4 thoughts on “Back To The Ol’ Texas Homestead At Last! 18”
Hi my name is Rebecca Nolen by birth . born in Dallas and raised in Houston area… I am now Rebecca Nolen O’Halloran and now live in Denver. I just wondered how many of my childhood friends may have tried to contact you trying to find me. Especially now that there are so many social media resources (like facebook) just in case you do get these type of requests can you redirect them to my married name for fb page. and I will do the same for you. funny how your blog refers to six flags . we grew up in the area and that was always a special family trip. I still have all of the maps from each year that we went and enjoy seeing how it changed over the decades. Huntsville State Park was our other vacation. It has changed a lot. Thanks for your time and nice to meet you..
Rebecca, I have found much success by including my maiden name as a middle name for my facebook page. It really works well. I’ve heard from a number of people I may never have heard from otherwise. My first 13 years I spent in South Houston and went to the Pasadena School District. Then we moved to a small community just outside Houston called Alemeda. I’m very glad to meet you. There are not many Nolens – mostly Nolans – out there so you and my husband’s family (from Arkansas) might be related!!!
I do have the Nolen name included in fb but in () maybe I should change it.. I to lived in Pasadena and South Houston off of Alameda and Fuqua with my mother I went to Madison High School for awhile… My older sister did go to Hartman High School when we lived in S. Houston off of Makaya Rd & Belfort We then moved to the north side to the Aldine area. My Father then settled in Tomball. Since I live in Colorado now and don’t make it back there much. (parents have passed) I haven’t kept up much with old school friends. My bad. but it is cool to talk to someone who grew up in the same areas. Anyway thanks for the reply.. I was just amazed at the similarities in name and location… tried to remember if I had at sometime started a blog and then forgot about it… lol so much was the same as my childhood memories. Take care and maybe we will talk again… msg me anytime you want to reminisce about growing up in s. houston… remember the excitement of Astroworld Grand Opening?
I went to Madison High School for one semester in 7th grade. I worked at Astroworld in 1972. That’s freaky.