Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Her Mente!

The reason that I didn't write and post last night, was because we were in Kerrville, attending an enjoyable, Texas Hill Country Master Naturalist reception / orientation for their Fall program. Tony signed up for the course and his first class is tomorrow, from 8:00 - 1:00.

Eileen, our good friend and super volunteer, took the course last Fall and she is now a certified Texas Master Naturalists and she has also volunteered to be Tony's mentor for the course and T. is very lucky to have her mentor him and he knows it.

When we arrived at the reception, at the Cultural Arts Center, across the street from Wolfmueller's Books, Eileen was the first to greet us. As we signed in and put on our name tags, Eileen immediately began introducing Tony as her mente and me, to the very friendly Master Naturalists members.

While we walked around sampling the members delicious food and meeting many interesting people, I sort of got jealous, because I realized that I really wanted to take the course too, so I told Tone, "I'm definitely going to sign up for their Spring program."

Following the friendly reception, as we went to find our seats for the orientation and introductions, we told Eileen that we would have to leave by 8:00, so we could get back to the rescue ranch, so Tony could put up our chickens for the night and she completely understood, so we sat on the last row, nearest the front doors, so we could slip out, without being noticed. Here's a picture I took of Eileen and Tony going over a few things, before the orientation began.

The orientation was so interesting and inspiring. When it came time for the Texas Master Naturalists mentors to introduce themselves and their mentes, they would walk up to the front of the class, with their mente or many mente-s to introduce them, I got even more jealous of Tony taking the Fall class, because these people were all so interesting and I wanted to know them, too. 

When it was Eileen's and Tony's turn to walk up to the front, Eileen had this to say about Tony and it made me so proud of him, even though I was so jealous of him getting to take the Fall course, instead of me.

"Tony Simons was born and raised in Medina, Texas. Tony comes from a long line of pioneer Texans being a 7th generation Texan, and is in fact, a descendant of William “Bigfoot” Wallace, a famous Texas Ranger and early settler of the Medina River area. Incidentally, Tony and his wife, Nancy, live on the Wallace Creek near Medina which was named for his ancestor, Bigfoot Wallace.

Tony enjoys nature photography, building cedar furniture and fishing on the Texas coast while staying at the home of a good friend who lives on an island, with a lighthouse, near Port Aransas!

Tony looks forward to taking part in bird and butterfly counts and he has several hundred acres he can count on, living across from the Echo Hill Ranch Boys and Girls Camp near Medina. Tony also plans to assist the camp with other wildlife and land stewardship projects.

Tony and Nancy and Kinky Friedman co-founded the Utopia Animal Rescue Ranch over 14 years ago where Tony and Nancy oversee a non-kill, extremely successful rescue. I know this because I’m a volunteer there and I see people come from all over Texas and other states to adopt from their rescue!  So, if you need a great dog, see Tony after class!

Welcome, Tony Simons!"

At 8:00, neither Tony or I wanted to leave, because we were enjoying the introduction part, but we had to, so Eileen walked with us outside to adios us and then Baxter slipped outside to give us a hug.

As Buttermilk took us home, we talked non-stop about how much we had had at the reception / orientation, even though Lisa, Baxter and Eileen were the only friends there, that we actually knew.

At 8:45, we arrived safely back at the ranch and that is my excuse for not writing last night.

Today has been great, because around 11:00, our new friends, Jennifer and Chris, came out again, so we could meet her parents, Maxine and Russ, visiting them from Colorado. And Tony and I instantly fell in love with them, as we had with Chris and Jennifer, the young-looking couple, who we had thought were in their twenties, but were actually in their mid-forties. 

Of course, I talked way too much, like I always do, but no one ever told me, "to put a lid on it," because they were all too nice. Like we had done with Jennifer and Chris, we gave Russ and Maxine the Grand Tour and like Chris and Jennifer, they loved meeting our rescued dogs, seeing The Okay Corral, Tony's No Whiner Diner, my pink writing cabin, The Cabin, Outer Space and meeting Mama, Roy Rogers, iPod and Belle Starr-Simons.

When it was time for them to go eat lunch at Toucan Jim's, neither Tone or I wanted them to leave, because we were having so much fun with them. And while we were hugging each other and adios-ing, I made them promise to come back, as soon as possible and they promised me they would. 

And that is about it for tonight, because I have to go to bed now, because I need to get up real early to drink coffee, fix breakfast and shower, because Eileen is coming out, in the morning, to help me do the morning chores outside, while T. is sitting in class, in Kerrville, with some of the coolest people on the planet. I'm still so jealous about it, but at least Eileen will be here and she is one of the coolest people that I know. Good night.

Y'all have a great evening!

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