Day 350 – Johnson City to Luckenbach
I woke up today refreshed and ready to take on the day. I decided to ride through town to see some LBJ plaques. That would for Lyndon B Johnson our 36th President for you younger folks. Texas is mighty proud of President Johnson and have all kinds of stuff names after him and dedicated to him. I wasn’t really into looking at all that so I found a place to get coffee and had a nice chat with Mark (pic) the owner of Black Spur Coffee Shop.
He was telling me about his round the country motorcycle journey with his wife and living in Texas as a Catholic, Yankee who previously lived in California. Apparently those are 3 strikes against a person in small town Texas. But Mark says he has found his niche with the coffeeshop and some good locals to surround himself with. I even got a picture of Mark with one of his pig bbqes. Smoke comes out of the nostrils when cooking.
Across the street was the Science Mill. A really amazing science museum made out of an old feed mill. The first weekend I was in Austin back in August, Chris took me to Fredericksburg and I remember seeing the colorful figures on the side of the building. Turns out that was the Science Mill getting it finishing touches for a February 2015 opening.
Everyone gets a passport to hang around their neck with a QR code on it. Each of the science stations has an iPad scanner that allows you to check in at the station. The iPad even plays a little video that looks like it is playing inside the card around your neck. They have really done a marvelous job creating hands on science experiments that are both fun and educational.
A few of my favorites were – (1) managing a power grid with a mix of renewable and none renewable energy sources. As the day progressed the goal was to deliver the cheapest mix of power while dealing with system failures. (2) building electrical circuits. (3) breaking down water into hydrogen and oxygen and then lighting the hydrogen to blast off a ping pong ball. (4) the fractal sculpture in one of the old grain silos with psychedelic lighting. (5) the soil bacteria exhibit that showed how different type of bacteria broke down the food in the soil and then created waste products that fed other bacteria.
I highly suggest anyone in the area to check out the museum.
I got back on the road and headed for a nearby Sculpture Ranch that’s about 7 miles from town on the way to Fredericksburg. It was closed, but the roads going there were a lot of fun to ride, few cars, lots of birds and ranches.