Monday, November 23, 2009

A Step Back in Time

A few days ago, I surprised the Hubby Bear with a little get away to what’s called, here in Texas, “the hill country.” Just west of Austin, the topography changes from the typical flat terrain of most of Texas, (with the exception of southwest Texas where there are a few smallish “mountains”) to hills.

Our destination was Fredericksburg. A quaint little German town with a main street lined for blocks with little shops, restaurants, bakeries and coffee houses. Driving from Austin to Fredericksburg, you could see that Fall finally made it to Texas as all the trees on the hill sides were turning their beautiful golds, oranges and reds. We had a nice cold front move through, so the temps were coolish. Although the one full day we were there, it rained and made it pretty miserable for walking main street and checking out the big Trade Days flea market just east of town. But, we managed ok.

We stayed at the coolest place called the Hanger Hotel. Truly a trip back to the 1940’s. Taking an old airplane hanger and turning it into a hotel, right there on the tarmac, was a brilliant idea. As soon as you walk thru the front door, you walk back into the 1940’s. Dressed in pilot’s shirts and pants, the staff at the front desk greeted us. You couldn’t help but notice the switchboard, rotary phone, and typewriter from the era. The decor was reminiscent of “Bogey and Bacall.” (much before our time!) Decorated with old suitcases, chairs, vases, tables, mirrors, a (non traditional) grandfather clock; and the bold sounds of big band music playing in the could sense how simple but, eloquent, the times must have been in that decade.

Hey, check out this giant size martini glass... ah.... brings back memories of my martini days.... long passed..... LOL!

The rooms were decorated in army green and cream colors. An army blanket lay across the bottom of the queen size bed. The bath was tiled in the traditional black and white tile of the era, with faucets that were popular in the 40’s..... the separate hot and cold that looked like airplane propellers. The cabinets had the bead board look with chrome pulls. The views from the rooms were not great at all. You had the choice of looking at the air conditioners or the diner and there was very little light in the rooms. But they were comfortable, warm and cozy. Nice for a couple of nights.

The only restaurant on the property was an authentic looking diner, opened only for 4 or 6 hours daily and closed at 2pm. Not very convenient; and not many cars, maybe one or two, around the joint the two days we stayed at the hotel. The Officers Club bar opened every afternoon at 5pm with live piano music. They served munchies.... blocks of cheese, crackers, chex mix and mixed nuts. Not much for this Vegan to choose from. However... the first night we wandered into the bar, they served up “vegetarian egg rolls.” Not bad at all. Something I might try my hand at some time soon.

The second night we dined at Bejas Grill on Main Street. It caught my eye because it was marketed as “Southwest Cuisine.” I thought... “Wow! I bet I can get a black bean soft taco there!” Well, I was sorely disappointed as the black beans were made with pork, (who puts pork in black beans?) and the Mexican rice was made with chicken stock. So, I ended up with a couple of tortillas, some guac and truly authentic, native New Mexican green chile sauce! Turns out the chef moved to Fredericksburg from Santa Fe just to work at the Bejas Grill. (But, has since moved back “home.”... I can understand that completely!) Bear had the New Mexican stacked green chile chicken enchiladas. He said they tasted just like the ones he gets in New Mexico.

On the second day, we took a short 24 mile trip to Kerrville to a custom made furniture show at the downtown Cultural Arts Center. WOW!! I mean WOW!! Be on the look out for my next blog as I take you on a tour of all the amazingly creative pieces of art that these talented furniture makers designed themselves. You will be very impressed!

So, that was out trip to the hill country. Great to get away and step back in time for a few days.

Until Next Time.....



  1. What a cute hotel!!! I will have to check that out sometime. I love Fredericksburg!

  2. its great for a one time stay. I dont think we will stay there again... probably wont go to F'burg again either. but it was fun :-)