Retire in the Texas Hill Country: The Natives are Friendly
by Brenda K Oswalt
I keep reading all kinds of articles about how great it would be to move to another country to experience a new culture and to retire on a shoestring. Guess what? Texas has both.
Why drag yourself to a different country when one of the best places to embrace a great standard of living is right here in the states? Texas is a unique culture all its own and, yet, there usually isn’t much of a language barrier. And, your money goes far in this state.
Texas is a powerful and beautiful part of the world with miles and miles of scenic beauty and honest-to-God down home hospitality. This state has been rated the #2 place in the USA for retirement, and visiting the Hill Country of Texas can certainly show visitors why.
Nope, I’m not telling you about Texas because I’m a slick-talking real estate agent. I’m telling you about Texas because I live in the Hill Country and I love it.
The Beauty of the Hill Country
Texas is called “The Wildflower State”. In the spring, the fields and meadows are covered with a magnificent layer of Texas Bluebonnets, Indian paintbrushes and other wildflowers, like buttercups. Short daytrips or gourmet-infused overnight excursions can bring the reality of the fragrant and beautiful natural blossoms close to home. Our American ancestors fought and died for this ground, and no matter what state you come from, you can feel its humbling power. In a sense, it is true patriotism at its best.
What is the Texas Hill Country?
The Texas Hill Country "officially" starts around Austin, Texas. Heading west and south from Austin, the Hill Country includes San Antonio to the west and Brenham, Texas to the east (sometimes referred to as the base of the hill country) and a 300-mile wide area including the small towns of Wimberley, Kerrville, New Braunfels, Fredericksburg, Dripping Springs, Blanco, Bandera and west to Uvalde. It includes the counties of Gillespie, Kerr, Bandera and Kendall.
Check out Brenham, Texas. Out on Highway 290, you can take the Brenham business loop and stop in the Boomer town of Brenham, which has the distinction of not changing much in 60 years. Take a leisurely walk around the square and snap a picture of the courthouse. (Texas is noted for its courthouses.) Drive downtown a bit to 102 S. Ross Street and enjoy a wonderful lunch at Volare Italian Restaurant.
Texas Has Great Food
Silvio DiGennaro, a native of Matera, Italy, made Volare an instant success when he chose to open up in 1997. The prices are unbelievably low and the food is pure “classical Italian”. And, do have dessert. The spumoni is to die for.
Texas is known for its great barbeque, shrimp, chili, and a regional pastry known as kolache, which is Czech or German in origin. Good and plentiful food is the norm in Texas. (article continues)
Keep reading about Texas Hill Country on page two.