Stirring up memories
Bearcat roams the Hill Country
March 23, 2005
There I was on a January day in Georgetown. It wasn't cold and blustery
January style; it was warm,
and stretching up toward 80 degrees.
But I wasn't in Georgetown,
Alabama across the Chattahoochee.
Nope, I was in Texas, standing where Indians
on the banks of the San
River and looking out toward
and rugged Texas hill country
wind-torn path of the fabled Old Chisholm Trail.
I had a meeting in Austin (about 45 miles away), and whenever I
close I always head for one of my favorite Texas towns and some of my favorite in the
people--my pals Florence and Barry Gould.
(They've visited Bainbridge--and the feeling is mutual!) And I
forget the dogs -- Blue,
Australian herder and Camo, the gorgeous leopard Catahoula, with whom I
On that bright Monday morning, Florence
took me to explore and enjoy downtown Georgetown. Although the city is a =
compared to Bainbridge (it was established in 1848) and is considerably
with a population nudging 30,000, the two have lots in common. They both are Main Street
Cities. Georgetown was the first Texas
City to win the Great American Main Street Award
successful downtown revitalization. Sound familiar? It should. Clever shops selling antiques,
clothing and, of course my favorite, books cluster around the square and
the surrounding streets.
It's a great place to visit.
At my stop at the Visitor's Center, later in the week, charming
Betty Ann Sensabaugh and Dolores Doering told me a little more about
it. The town was indeed a stop on
Chisholm Trial. Later on,
when the railroad came, it grew into a thriving trade center. The time to visit is in April,
the Red Poppy Capital of Texas.
A homesick young soldier in the American Expeditionary Forces in
Europe during World War I sent poppy
-- the red Flanders
-- home to his
mother. She planted them and she
them. Every April
with their glowing, silken blooms.
Now they've been joined by numerous American poppy varieties
naturally, the gorgeous Texas bluebonnets
paintbrush. No wonder
they host the
Red Poppy Festival at the end of April.
Browsing those shops is a good way to perk up an appetite. I knew it was going to be a
when I looked at the first two items on the menu at the Down the Alley Bistro. Patricia's Delight
Flo's Fav! It
was meant to
be. The only problem was
wasn't enough time --
we had to head
north to Austin.
The next morning while Florence attended a committee meeting
what! Georgetown has
festival.), I headed back for more exploring around the Square. I spent way too much time
in the Hill Country Book Store before
back to Treasures, one of
stops. I'd seen a salad
cruet that our resident salad chef was going to love. Now it was time to buy.
I told the friendly owner to use extra bubble wrap because it had
to go a
"Where are you from?" she asked.
I took the easy way out and said, "Near Tallahassee." It saves giving the geography
"Really," she responded, "I lived in a Havana for a while when I was
"Actually, I'm from north of there.
Just across the state line in Bainbridge."
Silence. Her face
surprise. More silence,
seem like a long time.
broke into a smile.
"I went to Bainbridge High.
We're having a reunion.
it's so good to talk to someone from Bainbridge." And talk we did for quite
Who remembers Mikie (for Michele) Miller of the BHS class of
She remembers lots of you and called the names of Gene Miller,
Rollins and Charles Palmer.
many Bainbridgers at that time, her dad Sam Miller worked for Southern
Airways. (Her mom was
Neta.) Southern Airways closed down,
family moved to Tennessee shortly before Mikie
graduated. But that doesn't matter.
"I'm definitely a member of the class of '62," she declared. Then she shared some favorite
memories -- what else?
Bram's. She remembers
fries and cherry Pepsi.
good for us."
Waterskiing on the
Flint, great trips to Panama City
Then Mikie quickly added what she remembers -- and misses the very most!
I can't get
boiled peanuts, and I do love them!"
No wonder she's planning on coming to the reunion during River
May. She'll get the
plenty of those peanuts. (Please note, reunion committee.)
Mikie brought me up to date on her life since the Bainbridge
days. After a stay in Tennessee, Southern Airways offered Sam a move
New Orleans, but he said, "No way,"
ended up, still with Southern, at Fort
Wolters near Mineral Wells,
Texas. There they reunited with
families they had known in Bainbridge.
That's when Mikie became a Texas girl. She graduated from St.
University in Austin and then worked for many years
Texas Department of
Education. But for the last several
years, she and
husband Charlie Barton have made their home in Georgetown and their joy and their
delightful Treasures on the
If you are ever in Georgetown, drop by 112 West
give the Bartons a "hello" from home.
If you want to drop Mikie a note, the zip code is 78626.
had welcomed me with a delightful and light Key Lime Jell-O pie. And she shared the
recipe. I made some changes,
chocolate cookie crust for her graham cracker one and exchanging oranges
Georgetown Jell-O Pie
1 package (4 servings)
1/4 cup boiling
2 cartons low-fat
1 carton no-fat Cool
1 prepared chocolate
Dissolve the Jell-O in boiling water, and then whip in the
yoghurt. When it is thoroughly mixed,
fold in the
Cool Whip and pour into the pie shell.
Refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight. Garnish with mandarin orange
if you are lucky, fresh Satsuma sections.
If you'd like to know more about Georgetown, go to http://www.visitgeorgetown.com/. To
learn more about the beautiful Catahoula dogs, visit www.catahoula.org/catahoula.html.
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Trilla Pando is a member of the Southern Foodways Alliance & the Story Circle Network