The “Bus Babes” welcomed travelers who were boarding the bus, checking in, and receiving boot-shaped necklaces and goody bags adorned with colorful boots, created by Carol Cieslik. As our adventure began Peggy Crandell outlined the day’s itinerary and announced the “bus babe crew” would serve breakfast. After our break at Slovacek’s where the aroma of Kolaches filled the air, we headed for the Texas Hill Country! The “Bus Babes” rolled out games and awarded prizes to many winners amid tons of laughter.
We traveled Hill Country roads into Gruene where we relaxed on the Gruene Mansion Inn patio with ice cold lemonade and special “boot” cookies baked by Kim Sapit while the staff delivered luggage to our rooms. Did you know that each room at the Gruene Mansion Inn is decorated uniquely but has one thing in common: they are wonderful. A “Get to Know You” happy hour complete with wine, snacks and games was held on the shaded outdoor patio. Everyone had a great time laughing and visiting during the get-acquainted games. Dinner at various restaurants and music/dancing at the Gruene Dance Hall topped off the evening.
Wednesday started with a home-cooked breakfast on the patio. After a few of us consumed all the homemade cinnamon rolls humanly possible, we departed for Wimberley on the back roads of the scenic Hill Country. Wimberley is a place you can “shop till you drop” or simply tour the quaint streets looking at the boots created by area artists. Most of us squeezed lunch into our schedules at restaurants along the winding creek. Our challenge: how many quaint boutiques can one person cover in a day? Did we mention the famous shoe shop, a yellow cottage some might think would hold no more than 12 people? Wrong. Forty (40!) women holding multiple pairs of shoes fit into the charming store that day! With shoe bags in tow, back to Gruene for our second happy hour on the patio.
Day three, our surprise itinerary! First stop was Le Ragge’ Ruggs/Cowgirls and Lace in Dripping Springs. Miss Reba greeted us with snacks and tea in the 20,000-feet store holding unique upholstery fabrics, furniture, clothing, toys, upscale fashions and home accessories. One gal purchased two chairs, which our great driver Mr. Ken transported home in the luggage bay.
Did you know Texas is the second largest olive producing state in our country? Our next surprise was the Texas Hill Country Olive Company. A personal tour of the vineyard and processing room was followed with a tasting of numerous olive oils and balsamic vinegars. Yes, there was still room for more shopping bags.
No more surprises, just lots of fun, games and prizes along with happy hour as we traveled home.
Thank you to Ruby Wilson, Judy Ondina, Betty Gardner, Jan Utzman and Peggy Crandell for their hard work, making this trip the most fantastic ever!