Monday, May 02, 2011

The Beach

We have been to Port Aransas, Texas. We have a long connection to PortA. Ned's family were some of the early settlers on Mustang Island. Ned's Dad was born on the island. Ned went there in the summers when he was a kid and we took our boys there while they were growing up. So many wonderful memories of spending the day on the beach, going to the harbor to buy seafood to cook for dinner, wiener roasts in the evenings. What could be better than long lazy days reading, walking the beach, picking up shells, watching the boys on boogie boards and eating good seafood.

We haven't been there for a while, actually a long while so we rented a little efficiency place at The Laughing Horse Lodge and off we went. PortA has changed. They have widened the streets, enlarged the grocery store, and opened seafood markets. There are wonderful birding and wild life preserves and the beaches have designated driving and parking areas. There is a museum about PortA history and we are going to help pull together the Mercer family tree since the first Mercers settled there in the 1850's.

We stopped at the Aransas-Corpus Christi Pilots office. Since Ned's Dad and Grandfather were pilots on the Houston Ship Channel and the early Mercer settlers at PortA were pilots who guided the ships in the Gulf into ports in that area, we thought it might be fun to meet a current pilot.

Here is where the story gets good. The dispatcher that we talked with at the office put us in touch with Captain "Ned" Teller. Captain Teller is from one of the old families on the island and he is a history buff about PortA.

He invited us to his home and when we got there, he went to get his Mother who was 90 years old but looked 70. She walked in and started talking about my Ned's mother's family. They were from Houston and we knew that all four of the "girls" in the Ricks family had not spent time in PortA when they were young women. We were so confused.

Well, it turns out that when she was about 14 she spent time in the Heights neighborhood in Houston and she became friends with the four Ricks girls. She remembered all their names and places they went together. And she met Ned's Dad, also named Ned. He was courting Ned's Mom. She thought he was so nice and she liked the name Ned and so after she married a man from PortA and started a family that is what she named her second son and he ends up being a ship pilot.

I hope you could follow this convoluted story. I think it is amazing that all of those threads could have come back together last week. It truly is a small, small world.


Patrick Kopplin said...

Great story. PortA has really changed the last few years. And you didn't even mention the golf course!! Did you take any more pictures?

Billie said...

Did I take anymore pictures? Really, Pat! Of course I did!

pitchertaker said...

Great story, Billie. If we just take the time to care and look, the story is always there.

Sam and Bob said...

How interesting. It is indeed a small world. I am so happy that you and Ned are enjoying yourselves. Take care.