New Braunfels – Gus The Redneck - lawbreaker
A few miles from San Antonio, Texas, more or less on the Guadalupe River, sits the city of New Braunfels. Not very many years ago, the place was a rather small town in rural Texas. Each year the Braunfelsians would celebrate tourists with a sausage festival and a street full of sausages and related booths and tables. As I recall, few, if any, left for home in a hungry condition.
Bigger but maybe not better
The buildings were Texas-old, the streets, narrow, and the people typically smiling and happy. That was then. Today the place is loaded (beset) with freeways, over-and underpasses, franchise eating joints, traffic jams, and new construction of major proportions both in and out of the city. It reminds a person of a case of the hives from eating too many strawberries. They spread, and so does New Braunfels.
The highway may or may not be my way
Yesterday I had to attend some business in New Braunfels. Driving there was no big deal. It used to be that a run from Houston over to New Braunfels was likely to be almost a four hour jaunt through one little place – then a long empty stretch of ranch land – followed by more little country towns. Not any longer. The wide Interstate allows you to get from here to there quickly. For a startling new sight, you pass by that just constructed super-tollway (Route 130, I believe that is its number) on which some crazies can decide to drive along at the speed limit – 85 miles per hour. Like New Braunfels, everything seems to be changing, but, according to this Redneck, not for the better.
Courting ain't exactly what it used to be
In New Braunfels I had to visit the county courthouse. That venerable building was being refurbished, but Comal County was open for business in the courthouse annex right behind the old courthouse. Entering the annex, my companion and I were greeted by some big-city stuff. There was a metal detector sitting by the entrance, attended there by three large sheriff's deputies. Two were built like centers who anchor major league football teams. The third was “pretty,” as one would expect of a practiced politician or a male clothing model.
As usual, my barbecue jackknife and handy-dandy digital camera were hanging on my belt. I went up to the metal detector thing and slid the two gadgets off of the belt and into the small tray that is common to metal detector stations.
The cops had a pluperfect fit. “You can't bring that stuff into this building,” one of them roared.
Sometimes a loss can actually be a gain
So I gathered them back up and stuck them back onto my trouser belt. I told one of the bigger of the two big deputies that I surely did not want my pants to fall off because of the belt being unsecured. He smiled and growled at the same time, an interesting combination. Then I told my buddy to go on ahead and file the legal papers we had brought with us – and I would take my illegal gadgets back outside and wait for him there. That's how it worked out.
Moving to the front porch of the annex, I could see that the folks were both repairing the old courthouse next door and stringing festive lights all over it for brightening the coming holiday season. The more I looked at the old place, the better it looked to me as a piece of happy architecture. So, out came the little contraband camera and, “click,” came a nice digital photo – the one you see here.
Sometimes it is a blessing to be thrown out of a place because you are wearing the wrong stuff.