Wednesday, August 08, 2007


Sunday was a little more relaxed. I had to get up early to take Stan back to Hobby Airport so he could make it back to work on Monday. There was very little traffic in any of the Houston Metro area the entire time we were there. This was especially true on a Sunday morning. I was tempted on the way back to take a spin through downtown or the east side, but my better judgment brought me back to the hotel to take Anne-Marie shopping.

We stopped by DSW first to buy Anne-Marie a pair of shoes. From there we ventured into the Galleria Mall. This mall is about more than twice as big as our own Clackamas Town Center with 375 stores. It's enough of a landmark that most of the locals refer to the area of town as "The Galleria." If you add the stores immediately surrounding the mall...well, we just walked around in a sort of daze wondering what stores to go into, if any at all. I did find out that I can't afford anything at Neiman Marcus (also known as Needless Markups).

We walked and walked and walked. All we could say that we had when we left was a lunch from Sonic, a memory of Texas's biggest mall, and really sore feet. I will say that it was fascinating just to see it. Everything really is big in Texas. We had to calm down our frayed nerves with Jamba Juice and an afternoon nap, which we probably had coming to us for five days.

Sunday evening was special because we decided to attend a service at Anne-Marie's cousin's church in Magnolia, 45 minutes northwest of the Galleria. Matthew Huffman is the son of Anne-Marie's dad's (Phil Huffman) first cousin (Joe Huffman). We communicated by phone and e-mail to coordinate.

We arrived in the Magnolia area a little after 6:00 PM. It's a beautiful area. They have rivers and trees, just like Oregon! We arrived at Magnolia Apostolic Tabernacle in plenty of time to make it to the 7 o'clock evening service. They had chuch! None of you out there probably even new Matthew could sing, but being kind and considerate of his feelings, I didn't post that picture.

They took us around their beautiful church facility and then took us out for a dinner at Chili's in Tomball. It was one of the most memorable moments of our trip. We're glad we had the opportunity to meet them!

Pics T-B: ornamental intersections in Uptown (they have chrome-plated street lights throughout!), view out of our room at the Inter-Continental, in the lobby, looking up at the indoor balconies of the Westin above the concourse, Chancellor and Preston (drinking his IBC Root Beer), Matthew with wife Stephanie and boys

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