I live in an eclectic neighborhood that sits on the shores of Galveston Bay. I have grown to appreciate, or not, it’s eclecticism over the twenty years I’ve lived here. My children, in spite of my efforts otherwise, grew up here. We have seen many neighbors come and go; our house has undergone add-ons twice. Our streets, flanked by giant ditches, have giant pot holes in them (the city’s answer to fixing is patch, baby, patch)! Yet in the summer, guests to our waterfront must pay the city $10 admission per person! Our hearts became heavy as we watched the Port of Houston pour massive amounts of concrete allowing semi trucks, with shipping containers on their backs, drive almost up to our back yard. Needless to say we have been here long enough to experience unassuming rural living, then watch it be plucked off a piece at a time in the name of progress.
Now an enormous cruise ship is in port on Saturdays. It arrives in the wee hours of the morning, appearing almost magically, to greet me and my morning cup of coffee. Traffic buzzes up and down the narrow two-lane road – that leads from our neighborhood to everywhere – a great find for tourists who ignore the 35 mph speed limit in an effort to board the ship on time. The enormous white bastion stays in port for the day and then, as the sun sets, it is off again. Sometimes we ride our bicycles to the waterfront and stare, mouths wide open, as it’s guided slowly to the ship channel. The evening sun gleams pink and orange hues on its massive side until it sets and the floating city, with its star-like lights, drifts out of sight.