10 THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW BEFORE TRAVELING TO TEXAS

Texas. The Lone Star State, with whom you shouldn't mess with and where everything's bigger. Cowboy-country, the endless plains and probably THE absolute personification of freedom. However, Texas also has kind of a bad reputation at times. They're conservative and dated Republicans, gun lovers and laws like “it's illegal to milk another person's cow”, “it's illegal to possess realistic dildos” - this one's for Dallas only, kinda like to know about the background story here – or “it's illegal for one to shoot a buffalo from the second story of a hotel” - I always thought that would work better from the third story anyway – are adding to it.

So, what actually got me there? Truth be told, I wanted to see that cowboy-country, straight out of a western, searching for the inner yeehaw and so on. Honestly, who hasn't thought about becoming a cowgirl or -boy at least once in her or his lifetime? Right, everybody and I found it. It actually exists, but Texas isn't just cowboys, horses and cattle drives.

There is an unbelievable vastness. We were driving though the backcountry towards Oklahoma and you can go for miles without seeing nothing but grasslands and blue skies. It's a comfortable quiet, where time slows down. No more rushing.

But there are also this modern metropolises. Skyscrapers, huge malls, research, NASA, you can discover it all. So, here are a few facts you should know about, before traveling to Texas.


  • Texans speak with an heavy accent, especially in the Dallas – Ft. Worth area.

I'd say, I speak English fluently and understand it even better but I really had a hard time at the beginning. Don't worry, y'all get used to it.

 

  • Despite the popular belief, drinking alcohol in public isn't illegal in Texas.

There actually is no general statewide prohibition on public consumption of alcohol. Public alcohol consumption is just forbidden in certain areas (central business districts, for example) of some cities around the state. But that doesn't mean you can go all loose – it's still embarrassing and the police will probably want you to restrain yourself anyway.

 

  • Rodeo is indeed awesome.

 

No, I don't support animal cruelty. I've been to a rodeo show and none of the animals got either harmed or hurt in any way. So go and see one, it's definitely worth a visit.


  • The unofficial Texan national dish is burgers.

Yes, they're everywhere and they're damn tasty. Vegetarians will have a hard time in Texas. Vegans, I'm really sorry, but you better stay at home this time.

 

  • The riverwalk in San Antonio doesn't smell.

We got warned, before visiting San Antonio, that the famous walk along the San Antonio river would smell awfully due to the heat during summertime but it's not true. Neither does it reek nor is it boring. We had a pretty great time there.

 

  • Summer in Texas is extremely hot.

 

I think Texas has been the hottest place, I've ever been to. The thermometer never got below 40°C / 104°F during the day and even during the night, there were still a 30°C / 86°F. And the hottest day even had a 46°C / 115°F.


  • Malls in Texas are freezing.

They cool them down to 19°C / 66°F. AC's in general are working very, very efficiently in Texas, whether its in your car or on your hotel room. You'll be looking forward to step back outside into the melting heat on the plus side.

 

  • Tornado season runs from March to August and hurricane season runs from June to November.

Keep that in mind, if you're planning on traveling to affected areas during those month. I've been there in July and the only thing I experienced was a lighting alert with heavy rain in Houston but tornadoes occur quite frequently in Texas.

 

  • Walmart actually sells guns.

Yep, you'll find them right next to the baby clothes department. It's kinda beyond comprehension for us Europeans but Walmart itself is a bit of an adventure in any event.

 

  • Texans are friendly folks.

 

They're calm, they're relaxed, they've always been helpful and they are surprisingly merry.


Keep those ten facts in mind and you will have a great time in Texas.

And by the way, it has been brought to my attention that the Dems may even win Texas during this years presidential election. So, maybe they're not all Republicans with outmoded beliefs after all ;)

Until then, happy traveling.

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