Pawnee, Texas

This was one of the first places we made a stop at on our Involuntary Vacation from McAllen in south west Texas to our home in the south east – a total of 700 miles.  It was a very small community, not as wealthy as it had been in the past although there is now plentiful natural gas in the area.  Sometimes this positively affects the population but usually the oil companies or landowners benefit the most.  We like to ‘collect’ unique post offices across the states and just being named Pawnee Post Office was cool enough.

I was intrigued about why the place was named Pawnee, as they are primarily central plains Native Americans.  When the second European settlers arrived in 1826, an Irish family named the Sullivans, they found a piece of wood nailed to a tree with Pawnee written on it.  Later arrowheads discovered in nearby Sulphur Creek were attributed to the Skidi Pawnee or Panismahas.  Legend has it that they practiced human sacrifice. So does our society, with guns, every day.  Many tribes were semi or fully nomadic and the area is rich for hunting, even today.  Back in the day there were buffalo, panther, antelope and wolves (oh my).  The area was settled by Native Americans 6,000 to 10,000 years ago.  Prior to the Sullivans, Carlos Martinez was granted the first Spanish land grant in 1789 as the conquistadors invaded from Mexico into Texas.

The Indigenous tribes were Apache, Karankawa and Borrado.  This is a wide and brief generalization but Apache were known as fierce warriors with a strong religious belief.  Their territory spread from Arizona to Texas and Mexico.  Navajo and Apache are related tribes.  Karankawa lived across the southern part of Texas, skilled in hunting and warfare.  They crafted pottery and baskets that they lined with a type of asphalt that washed up on the beaches of the Texas Gulf.  Oil has been part of our culture for a long time…  Not much is known about the Borrado who were misnamed by the Spanish settlers for their striped body painting or tattoos.  They were native to Northern Mexico and the Rio Grande area.  The frequented Padre Island.

After the Sullivans settled in Pawnee they were joined by their women folks and then a range of Swedish and German settlers.  Today this tiny little town still has 12 churches that represent every possible form of Christianity.  The Methodist Church below caught my attention.  The photographs are untouched to show how dark the clouds were.  I have to be honest and say that it looked like a perfect place to shoot a thriller or horror movie – no disrespect intended! Can’t you see villagers seeking shelter behind that red door to escape from the oil companies zombie hordes (obviously interchangeable)??

There is even excellent disability access to the beautiful little church (aka zombie shelter). Perhaps zombies might be considered disabled in which case my shelter idea is terrible. Wouldn’t you like to live in my mind for a day??? 🧟‍♀️

Zombies!!!

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I can’t take any more beautiful, tasteful, upscale, divine, sensational words in my paid job and need a bit of gore! This is a teaser for next week’s Walking Dead theme and regular addicts will know that this is the last time I can mention the Z word. I might talk about Roamers, Walkers or Lurkers but not the unmentionable. The Undead have fascinated me every since my crazy mum would frighten me with tales of Voodoo from when she visited Louisiana. She believed they were real but she also believed in fairies – enough said.

When I was young she would wait at the top of the stairs and then jump out at me snarling with witch fingers. She swears that I would beg her to do it. I do remember my Great Aunt Frances scaring me by taking her false teeth out and chasing me around the bedroom. Curiously, I love to hide behind doors and scare our poor elderly cats. Genetics are amazing aren’t they? I am howling with laughter as I write this with Addams family memories.

As a teenager, my best friend and I would go to see Zombie movies at the cinema. They weren’t as popular back then and one infamous occasion there was one showing at a seedy cinema called the Classic Grand – usually referred to as the Classic Gland because of the type of movies it showed. We naively thought we were just seeing the Zombie movie but it was the B movie. For young people reading this – in olde tymes you saw two movies at once with an interval in between.

The A movie started and it was a really bad but tame porn movie. Suddenly we noticed that we were the only women in the cinema and the men were all alone in different rows. It’s not a cliche – they were all wearing trench-coats that probably gave easy access to some fiddling about down there. They were getting a twofer because not only were there pretty young girls on the screen but there were two stupid but pretty girls giggling in front of them.

I don’t know if my friend still loves Zombie movies but this incident did not put me off and I love anything Undead…