Saturday, October 06, 2007

Yesterday, we had lunch with a couple of our best friends on the planet. The week before I attended my high school reunion. Last week, I also attended a picnic for the retired physicians and other co-workers at Scott & White. The lunch yesterday was at the plush Hyatt Lost Pines Resort in Bastrop. The resort is located on the Colorado River and close to the famous Lost Pines Forest State Park. After lunch we drove down to Bastrop to get a better look at the pines. Those pines reminded me of the friendships that I had revisited in the past week. They have stood the test of time and were rooted in a soil conducive to their growth and long-term health. Many of the pines I saw lining the roadway of the great resort were transplanted and look pretty sickly and anemic. I doubt if they will grow into the rich, green hearty variety found only a few miles away. The soil for the hearty pines contains a magical ingredient that is difficult to duplicate by science or in a foreign place.
The pine trees of Bastrop are located over 100 miles west of the rich pine forest of East Texas. They are sequestered in a belt of oak and other hardwood. Archeologist and geologist say they are some sort of anomalous remnant of the Ice Age. It could be said that the pines are proof that there was another period of global warming. A little further south, there is a similar oasis of maple trees that make you think you are in New England as you stroll through them with the other tourist.
The transplanted pines at the Hyatt Resort have bags tied around the trunks, probably containing nutrients to promote growth and simulate conditions of those a few miles away. They are pale, pitiful looking things compared to the ones I grew up with in East Texas. Hopefully, they will make it with tender loving care, but I wouldn’t bet on it. It’s sort of like when I lived in Hawaii and Maryland. These were beautiful places but I had trouble taking root. My long time friends from Hawaii and Maryland are ones who share common interest. The common interest with those friends, not the beautiful sites, has been our bond. Folks born in a place are usually bonded there for life; just like the bond of the East Texas pines and my high school friends. The place of birth and common interest are the essential elements for human bonding and friendship.
Guess, the reason I like the porch so much is that I was raised on one during a time in which they were popular. I would surely recommend visiting the Hyatt Resort, but not because of the pines which are a little disappointing. The porch is especially nice there.


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