TexasEscapes.com HOME Welcome to Texas Escapes
A magazine written by Texas
Custom Search
NEW : : TEXAS TOWNS : : GHOST TOWNS : : COUNTIES : : TOPICS : : HISTORY/OPINION : : ARCHITECTURE : : IMAGES : : ARCHIVE : : SITE MAP


Texas | Columns | "Wandering"

Not a happy camper
in Angelina County

by Wanda Orton
Wanda Orton
Never did take much to the great outdoors, having become attached at an early age to such amenities as lights, water and four walls.

On vacation trips, my idea of camping out was to lounge in a lawn chair by a motel swimming pool with a good book and a cold can of Coca-Cola. Well, don't knock it. At least I was outdoors.

Once I tried roughing it on a fishing trip with my parents in the thickest, darkest, most intimidating patch of piney woods in Angelina County. The minute we arrived, I was asking, "Can we go now?"

That night while mother and daddy slept comfortably under a tent, I hovered in the car, wide-awake to weird noises of the night. After the rains came, I felt stranded, reluctant to make a sloshing trek through the mud from the car to the tent.

No sir. Not in the dark.

With creatures unknown lurking about.

Neither mother nor daddy volunteered to come after me and carry me o'er the mud puddles to the tent. After all, I was 12 years old and big for my age. Can you blame them?

So I spent the most miserable night of my dozen years inside the car, enduring eerie and unidentifiable sound effects. I thought, but wasn't sure, that some of those unsettling sounds came from panthers. They didn't call that football team the Lufkin Panthers for nothing!

At the break of dawn, my parents were brewing coffee over a campfire and making plans for fishing in the Angelina River in my granddaddy's boat.

I was the only member of a large family of fishing enthusiasts who refused to get in that boat.

My cousins had told me too many horror stories of snakes slithering alongside the boat in the middle of the river. Laughing aloud, our granddaddy would collect a reptile with an oar and then swing it back and forth, scaring the heck out of everybody.

Everybody laughed when telling about it. I couldn't even muster a smile.

As mother and daddy were preparing to go fishing, they asked me to join them. "That's OK," I told them. "I'll just stay here and watch out for everything."

Hark! In the distance we heard an automobile approaching.

Uncle Dave was coming to see us.

I can't recall now if he was just checking on us or bringing more provisions.

For several more days, mother and daddy enjoyed fishing and camping without a worry in the world about snakes or panthers or anything else that the primeval forest could produce.

My granddaddy joined them that weekend, and I have no idea whether he pulled his famous snake 'n' oar trick on them in the fishing boat.

I wasn't around to find out.

As you may have guessed, I returned with Uncle Dave to my favorite place to visit, the great city of Lufkin.

Ah, it was good to be back in my comfort zone movies at the downtown Pines Theater, shopping at if she and her mother were enjoying camping out.

"No," she replied. "We city girls."


© Wanda Orton Baytown Sun Columnist
"Wandering" April 17, 2017 column

More Columns | Lufkin
Related Topics: Texas Trips | Texas Rivers | Texas Towns

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

COLUMNS:

  • Mike Cox - "Texas Tales"
  • Clay Coppedge - "Letters from Central Texas"
  • Murray Montgomery - "Lone Star Diary"
  • Wanda Orton - "Wandering"
  • Michael Barr - "Hindsights"
  • Maggie Van Ostrand - "A Balloon in Cactus"
  • David Knape - "Once Upon A Line" Poems
  • Roger Todd Moore - "Moore Texas" Cartoons
  • John Troesser
  • More Things Historical:

  • "A Glimpse of Texas Past" by Jeffery Robenalt
  • "Bob Bowman's East Texas" by Bob Bowman
  • "All Things Historical" by Archie P. McDonald & Bob Bowman
  • "Cannonball's Tales" by W. T. Block Jr.
  • "It's All Trew" by Delbert Trew
  • "Charley Eckhardt's Texas" by C. F. Eckhardt

  • All Texas Towns :
    Gulf Gulf Coast East East Texas North Central North Central Woutn Central South Panhandle Panhandle
    South South Texas Hill Hill Country West West Texas Ghost Ghost Towns counties COUNTIES

    TEXAS ESCAPES CONTENTS
    HOME | TEXAS ESCAPES ONLINE MAGAZINE | SEARCH SITE
    TEXAS TOWNS A-Z | TEXAS GHOST TOWNS A-Z | TEXAS COUNTIES

    Texas Hill Country | East Texas | Central Texas North | Central Texas South | West Texas | Texas Panhandle | South Texas | Texas Gulf Coast
    TRIPS | STATES PARKS | RIVERS | LAKES | DRIVES | FORTS | MAPS

    Texas Attractions
    TEXAS TOPICS
    People | Ghosts | Historic Trees | Cemeteries | Small Town Sagas | WWII | History | Texas Centennial | Black History | Art | Music | Animals | Books | Food
    COLUMNS : History, Humor, Topical and Opinion

    TEXAS ARCHITECTURE | IMAGES
    Courthouses | Jails | Churches | Gas Stations | Schoolhouses | Bridges | Theaters | Monuments/Statues | Depots | Water Towers | Post Offices | Grain Elevators | Lodges | Museums | Rooms with a Past | Gargoyles | Cornerstones | Pitted Dates | Stores | Banks | Drive-by Architecture | Signs | Ghost Signs | Old Neon | Murals | Then & Now
    Vintage Photos

    USA | MEXICO | HOTELS

    Privacy Statement | Disclaimer | Contributors | Staff | Contact TE
    Website Content Copyright Texas Escapes LLC. All Rights Reserved