Smorgasbord Letters from America – Houston – June 1986 – South Padre Island and Getting Fit.. Sally Cronin

When I was given the folder of my handwritten letters to my parents when my father died in 1996, I was amazed that he had kept them for ten years. But so pleased that he did. We tend to remember the major events, and we had plenty of amazing experiences in those two years of living in the United States, but it is easy to forget the everyday…

It is now June 1986 and the summer was hot… we decide to go down to South Padre on the gulf coast for a weekend and to test it out ahead of my 15 year old nieces trip later in the summer.. As usual I kept my parents up to date with my weekly letter home. I do have some photos of that trip somewhere but with 12 moves since then.. don’t ask me which box they are in!!  Here is a modern day one from Pixabay.com…

Dear M & D..

We got home from South Padre…to find a letter from you and from Diana… thank you for catching up with all your news.

We had a wonderful weekend and were very pleasantly surprised by our beach house. I must admit I was expecting a shack on the beach but in fact it was a two storey, double garage, two bed and bath private house. The living room was as big as our appartment, and a balcony with a great view of the sea. We had sunshine the whole time and we spent most of in on the beach and in the water, surfing on rafts…

The seafood was amazing in the two restaurants that we ate in and the prawns (shrimp here as you know) were as big as lobsters.. The only draw back was the 7 hour drive there and back, but I took along our trivia pursuit box of questions and we swapped driving every couple of hours and became quiz master.. David won of course.. I never was much good at science but entertainment is usually mine!  We love living in the complex but we did notice the difference being in a detached house 50 yards from the nearest neighbour… very quiet….

The weather was very hot up to the last week or so but we are getting into hurricane season in the next few weeks and there has been a some very heavy rain and flooding already. None have touched down in Houston for the last couple of years but there are warnings out at the moment. There are lines at the supermarket for the basics although I tend to keep a stock in the larder just in case with bottled water etc.  I would be quite happy not to experience one and hopefully we will get away with it again this year.

I am back down to a size sixteen again which is pleasing.. it takes effort… and have upped my aerobics to two classes a week and I can usually make it through the hour without keeling over. I am also playing water volley ball twice a week and tennis at least once with Debby. Swimming an hour a day is a good way to ease the muscles and I love having the pool to myself most of the afternoon as everyone is usually at work.. Except for my flight attendant friends who regale me with tales of life in the sky… they don’t get paid enough.

The latest group activity is line dancing and we have found a great country and western dance bar where we have been a couple of times.. David is not keen but I go with the gang when he is away. I am not allowed to dance with strangers.. and if a cowboy should approach me and ask me, two or three of my guardians step forward and tell them ‘She’s married’..I will never get the Texas two step mastered at this rate!

We are moving ahead with plans for Emma’s visit. Debby’s students are around the same age so she is organising some of them to accompany us on days out. They are all looking forward to meeting her and have been restrained from coming to the airport with us to meet her. Our friends here in the apartments have also started issuing invitations and about 20 of us will be going to Pappasitos to introduce her to fajitas…I promise to take lots of photographs to send to you.

We have so many air miles racked up that we need to spend before we come back to the UK, so I am going to come home in October if that is okay with you for a week to see everyone, just in case our contract is extended into the middle of next year.. We are also going to us them up in conjunction with loyalty points we have with Marriott and having never been to Barbados that is our next port of call in September.

It is time for the fortnightly phone call this Sunday so will catch you up on everything else then.

love from us both.

S & D.

Thanks for dropping in today and I hope you have enjoyed the latest adventure. I am so glad we made the most of our two years in America. We met some amazing people and 35 years later we are still in touch.

 

39 thoughts on “Smorgasbord Letters from America – Houston – June 1986 – South Padre Island and Getting Fit.. Sally Cronin

  1. As I’ve told you before, I think this is one of my favorites series from your blog. I wish that I had old letters to help me remember some of those experiences. My wife and I never got too good at line dancing, but each year we teachers would learn some dance for the school’s talent show. So much fun to surprise the kids, surprise the kids that their old teachers could have fun, dress up, and learn a dance routine. I never tired of seeing the shocked looks on their faces.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I was supposed to go to South Padre Island Sal. I had a girlfriend I made friends with on a trip to Mexico around that same time lol. She lived in Chicago and I flew there many times to visit her for a few years until she moved to South Padre Island and disappeared in ethers. lol. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Weekly Round Up – January 17th – 23rd 2021 – 1960’s music, Online Scammers, Green Kitchens, Book Reviews, Anti-aging and Laughter | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

  4. Another fine installment! I’d never come across South Padre Island before and the local descriptions of the places you visited are always a welcome mix of information and entertainment. I loved the protective friends on the dance floor! xx

    Liked by 1 person

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