This is how to frustrate two Floridians quickly- have the weather turn cold and wet. We all don’t have this healthy, brown glow from staying indoors.
Until today, the weather in Southwest Texas was cooperative. The skies were blue when we hiked, dried as we canoed, and clear as we searched for stars. But as soon as we entered Alpine the rain decided it was time to appear. Although it never grew stronger than a shower, it was uncomfortable and very cold. Bummer- we wanted to visit Marfa (another little town less than an hour’s drive away) but all the activities we wanted there were outdoors.
No more hiking for us. Time to explore Alpine, TX.
Time for… coffee!
Plaine Coffee is anything but plain- especially in all the quirky and humorous art covering every flat surface. Its menu board is made of Scrabble letters. Hubs Shoes took a Nitro Brew. I’ve had many Vietnamese Coffees before and while the one from Plaine tasted drastically different (I think they used a different bean) it was still very sweet and creamy.
At Baker’s Dozen Donut shop (Hey! We had burned a lot of calories over the past week. We deserved sugary things!) other travelers had beaten us to the line. When it came to our turn, sinfully sweet temptations manifested in the form of old-fashioned, cakey Donuts with flavors such as Red Velvet or Pumpkin. To round it off, we also grabbed some favorites such as their Glazed Donuts and other ones topped with Chocolate Icing.
The Big Bend Museum is located inside Sul Ross University. We were pleasantly surprised at how informative and entertaining this little museum was—and for free! (Donations are accepted- they deserve the love). So many exhibits covered every corner and so many topics were discussed from the history of the National Park, to fossils found in the area, to historic landmarks in Alpine, and even the history of clashes with other cultures in the region.
For lunch, Alicia’s Mexican filled our stomachs with a ‘Zo Burrito’ (which looked like a Philly Steak inside a Tortilla wrapper) and an Asado Platter. Their Tortilla wrapper was too thick and overwhelmed the flavors of the dish but I found the accompanying Fries tasted better with the stewed Meat.
Cedar Coffee– with its minimalist atmosphere- became our place to rest, relax, and read while sipping more caffeine among busy students. Hubs took a rather bitter Cold Brew while I enjoyed my Honey Lavender Latte a bit more.
Although we were filled with caffeine, we immediately tried to crash it… with Beer! Big Bend Brewing Co. is the only brewery around here and unfortunately, the cold air was strongly felt inside the brewing warehouse. A puppy’s head poked outside the neck of a young bartender’s jacket in a novel approach to both of them staying warm while our Beer flight was poured. The soft hum of the brewing barrels surrounded us as we sampled the offerings.
For dinner, Come and Get It BBQ delivered a satisfying combination of tender Ribs, Brisket, and Sausages paired against crisp Onions and Pickles. The large restaurant even featured a stage but its large space also seemed to multiply its emptiness that evening.
Hubs Shoes and I loved travelling this area of Southwest Texas. Sure, it was our honeymoon, but we also loved how the area was mostly unspoiled for us. We had wide, open spaces and no crowds. Nobody we knew had previously posted photos and ruined our adventure into the unknown. With barely any service, we loved having to rely on maps and each other- our married life began all right.
And suddenly… it was night time. That was it.
Where did all the time go? With our stomachs full of food and our brains full of memories, the black sky descended. With the morning, we’d be back on the Amtrak and eventually on a plane back to Florida. Yet, Hubs and I both know we’ll be returning to this beautiful area someday.