On this cold Tuesday morning while I'm writing, it strikes me that you might think the headline refers to the Arctic blast of air, ice and flurries that came in on Monday night. However, I'm actually referring to a different type of storm moving in from up north - Canadians!
As you might know, Sean Reardon's wife, Terri, is from Canada. She went through all the legal hoops, classes and tests several years ago and obtained her American citizenship; but, her family still lives up north. Of course, in Texas, "up north" can refer to anything north of the Red River; but, in this case, I'm referring to north of the Great Lakes.
Terri's mom, Annie, came down early last fall and has been on a six month tourist visa. During that time, she's already had visitors make the trek from Ontario to check out Texas, and she's put her time here to great results. She's wandered over to New Orleans and sampled the French Quarter (which is remarkably similar to Quebec, but warmer and muggier). She's been all over central and south Texas, and now knows her way to Austin and San Antonio with no problems.
And then, last week, the Judicial Group arrived. Three ladies who all work with the courts in Canada, and who know Annie from her years of working as a policewoman, got their passports stamped, flew into San Antonio, were picked up by Annie, and Texas will never be the same.
Currently the Canadian dollar is strong against the American dollar, so shopping was high on the list of priorities. Joni found herself an iPad at a Target store in San Antonio and stopped by the office on Monday to have me help her get up and running.
The girls checked out the River Walk over the weekend and took advantage of the unseasonably warm weather to don shorts and sleeveless outfits. They even picked up some appropriate Texas headgear, and Barb has already tricked out her cowboy hat with rhinestones and an American flag pin!
Deb has been the documentarian, capturing all the places they've been with digital photos. She takes pictures of the buildings, the people, the animals and the oddities.
On Sunday, they finally made their way back to Mason County and spread out to discover all of it they could. They headed out to Sean and Terri's and Peanut and I took them to the back of the property where we climbed some of the granite rocks. They got to see the cows close up, and watched rabbits running through the pasture.
That afternoon, we cooked steaks, sat outside and watched the sun set behind high clouds in the west. They listened to stories about the area, asked lots of questions to make sure they had heard everything correctly, and then laughed at the remarkable similarities between they and their American cousins.
On Wednesday, Annie will be taking them back to San Antonio to catch their flight out on Thursday. I have no doubt that, once they get home, they are going to regale their friends and families with the tales of the fickle weather, the wide-open landscapes and the crazy people they encountered during their journey.
I hope their stories include the friendly people they were so pleased to meet here; and, know that I'll have a few stories about them that I WON'T include in the paper.
It’s all just my opinion.