Friday, December 12, 2008

We Found Comfort in Texas

The day began on a very somber note with the news of the passing of Arnold Gavin, my (Chuck's) uncle. He and his wife Jo were travelers extraordinaire. It was not unusual to hear of them returning from one trip and planning for another. Some of his travels were short (about four thousand yards over a green course) others were long (over a deep blue sea). He enjoyed life and people. We will miss him.

Comfort, Texas describes itself as "the centrally located star of the German-pioneered Texas Hill Country" and proudly boasts a population of 2500. The town's history is preserved in the Comfort Heritage Foundation which is housed in the restored Comfort State Bank Building. The Bank was built in 1907 of native limestone with red brick in the tow.

During our visit to the Foundation, we asked to photograph some of the display cases. The first case had a dress and some other belongings of Beatrice Giles Dreiss. As we wee reading the information in the case. Two ladies came over and introduced themselves.

They were Amy Scott, 93, and Laura Bradfield, 87, who were the daughters of Beatrice. They happened to be at the Foundation that day adding some more items to the display. Ms. Scott spoke of cleaning and repairing this dress in the display case and of wearing it in a community ceremony several years ago.

Both daughters spoke about their mother's artistic ability and pointed to the pictures in the display. These pictures are photocopies of portraits that their mother had painted on ivory tiles.

We had a lengthy conversation with these two lovely ladies, and all the time I'm standing there holding my camera. I spent the afternoon wondering why I had not asked them if I could take their photograph.

One of the many nearby buildings that we visited was The Comfort Common In the Historic Ingenhuett-Faust Hotel. This eight-room hotel was built in 1880 by noted English architect Alfred Giles for Peter Joseph Ingenhuett.

Built in 1820. this is the Ingenhuett Log Cabin (named for Peter Joseph Ingenhuett), located behind the Inn and available for guests.

The Inn is for sale, and we talked to one of the owners about their decision to sell. "I've run the Inn seven days a week for 18 years. I'm not retiring; I'm just tired."

There was a time that we thought about operating a B&B or inn. Not any more.

What better place to look for a little solace than Comfort. It certainly worked for us.

We'll write more later about this historic town.

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