I didn’t know much about Abilene before I got here. I knew it was in Texas, I knew about the work ACU was doing… and that’s about it. I’m now ready for my pop-quiz on Abilene after a great weekend seeing the sites around and being guided through it by the wonderful George Saltsman. George spent most of Saturday showing me around the district and filling in all the gaps on the local history, geography and all the socio-political goings on of the last 100 years or so! We visited historic Fort Griffin, Albany (where the local art gallery contains a Picasso, Renoir and Modigliani) and finally to Buffalo Gap. We finished the day with a dinner with most of the team from the Adams Centre at the local Chinese. Today I spent driving around some more taking in the west Texas frontier. If you find yourself in Abilene, check out Frontier Texas which through “cutting-edge technology puts a visitor in the middle of attacks by Indians and wolves, stampeding buffalo, a card game shootout and a prairie thunderstorm, even a lovely spring evening filled with fireflies’.
I love the fact that there is somewhere comparable to Australia – in climate, geography, natural phenomenon (there’s a heap of fires to the north at the moment) and attitude. If you could swap the mesquite trees for eucalypts it really would be just like home – or at least the drive from Wagga to Griffith. Texas is one of those places where I just feel comfortable.
I can’t say how much I appreciate the hospitality being shown to me here – I really hope that I can repay it sometime in the future.