What the Dickens?


Let’s get right to it. Here’s something I bet you don’t know. Jane Dickens Monk, great-great-granddaughter of the author Charles Dickens, and Lucinda Dickens Hawksley, great-great-great granddaughter of the same, both live in Galveston. Yes, they do!

This is probably the reason that every year in December, and for the past 42 years, there is a weekend Victorian parade on The Strand in the historic part of the town. And the Galvestonians really get into the spirit of things. You don’t believe me? Here’s proof!

The parade also covers the history of the area. The Sons of the American Revolution are there, the Daughters too. Cowboys on horses trot by, and even the area’s pirate history is celebrated. I met one!


Here’s a Jolly fellow! Wonder if his name is Roger?

Oh, here’s another interesting thing to see in the city. After Hurricane Ike struck Galveston in September 2008, the combination of the powerful winds and tidal surge uprooted thousands of city trees. Three enterprising local sculptors decided to do something about the remains of the tree trunks, and created carvings  that are now displayed in many residents’ gardens.

And here’s yet another fact that will amaze and astound you. King Vidor, one of the directors of “The Wizard of Oz”, was born in Galveston.

IMG_20151217_151747000What a fitting tribute to him on the front lawn of the home he was born in: Tin Man and Toto (dressed for Christmas!), also carved from tree remains.

The stately homes in the old part of the city are also something to see. Here’s a photo or two to give you the picture (no pun intended). Apparently a lot of these homes are owned by people (obviously wealthy!), who live in Houston and use them at weekends. Nice life!

I have to report that we had a car accident in Houston. A rather distracted elderly man went straight through a red light at 60 km an hour, and slammed into the passenger side of our car as we pulled into the intersection. A split second later and the impact would have been right into the passenger door. I shudder to think of the consequences had that been the case.IMG_20151223_112236031_HDRThere are no injuries to report, but we were bruised and are still pretty shaken up. The car has been inspected and is a write off, as the damage is too great. There was a slight hiccup dealing with our insurance company which resulted in quite a bit of stress for us, and to redeem themselves, they gave us $3000 more than the car was worth. Almost worth the hassle!!!!

Russ is flying back to Canada to buy another car, and will drive it back to Galveston so we can get to Austin and continue our Texas vacation there (with the cat!). This means we need to stay in Galveston for an extra week. And here I have to mention the kindness of the Texans. The owner of the condo we are renting has offered to let us stay at no extra charge. He told me we’d gone through enough and this was his Christmas present to us!

There certainly are good people out there! And that is a good end to this blog.

Merry Christmas to all from Galveston! And have a wonderful New Year!!!!