A cold snap on my way to Fort Worth


Wow. I had thought I had outsmarted the cold here in DFW, by lingering so long in Arizona. I had thought the DFW forecast looked OK. And my first two days here were indeed lovely and warm. Yesterday did start getting a bit iffy.

Today? Wow.

The forecast had shown a high of 68, so I had thought that sounded just fine. Little did I know that that high temp happened in the middle of last night. By the time we woke up this morning, it was in the 40s and dropping, with wind on the way.

My host Brandon was generous enough to spare me the frigid bike ride by driving me to the commuter-rail station downtown, before heading over to his volunteer shift at the bike co-op. On our way, even the truck was feeling the blustery winds on the road, so I was extra thankful for the ride.

But first, we stopped for an early lunch at one of his favorite places, a nearby all vegetarian Indian restaurant, Kalachandji’s. It is run from a Hare Krishna temple, an architecturally beautiful building. We went inside and found a buffet line filled with colorful and fragrant items. We took the food to go, and enjoyed it back at his place before loading up my things into the truck.

Arriving downtown, we just missed the once-an-hour train at the platform, unfortunately, so he dropped me at a Chipotle a few blocks away so that I could keep warm. I ate a bag of tortilla chips, and then on my way back to the train platform, I stopped across the street at Insomnia Cookies to get a few chocolatey goodies for the trip.

The train arrived on time, and I was able to maneuver my rig onto it by myself. (I’m starting to get the hang of such things now.) The railcar was a warm and comfortable place to pass the one-hour ride to Fort Worth.

When I arrived at the T&P station, my new Warmshowers host Bill picked me up in the cold and windy parking lot, and took me back to his lovely house in a tree-filled neighborhood, where I met his wife Susan and their adorable dog and cat.

But first, he gave me a quick tour of some nearby Fort Worth areas, including a gorgeous old post office right near the train station. It is still in use as an active post office, but doesn’t get much “business,” so it was quiet when we went in to admire the 1930s art-deco architecture.

Afterward, we all enjoyed a home-cooked meal and shared stories of bicycling and life. I’m now sitting in front of the cozy gas fireplace in the living room, feeling very thankful for the shelter and warm welcome in this cold snap.

Tomorrow is forecast to be mostly chilly, but warmer than today, with a high of 57. (I must admit I’m glad to have visited the botanic garden the other day, when the weather was balmier.) Susan has said she can accompany me into downtown Fort Worth to check out a few museums and attractions, so I’m looking forward to exploring on my last day in the area, before I take the Amtrak train to Austin on Saturday.

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