By Deloris Munden

August 29 loomed in our future. A day that marked 35 years since the Munden’s went on a date. We were still talking, no recent calls to sheriff for spousal abuse; life was good.

Ron, who is always ready to leave town so he can “shoot” (photos) jumped at this and recommended Hot Springs, Arkansas.

One small detail…what to do with a 4 month-old puppy? We decided that it would be an excellent opportunity to expand her horizons if we took her with us. And how much trouble could she be. I pictured late night walks with Ron and Ginny (puppy), Ron and I throwing a ball to her, watching her reaction to new experiences, and murmuring “thank you “as people exclaimed how beautiful and stately she looks. I need to point out that Ron and I spend an hour on Sundays…at least…and that’s without a bath and blow dry and daily combing to achieve this stately look. But you can see how Ginny brings us together. I say, “you’ve got to hold her still” and Ron sweetly saying in a loud voice, “I am”!

So off we go. One hundred seventy nine miles and we will be checking in to La Quinta in Hot Springs.

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Garvan Woodland Gardens – Hot Springs


Garvan Woodland Gardens , a botanical garden complex belonging to the University of Arkansas and located inside Hot Springs National Park, is composed of over fifteen separate natural areas and picturesque sites of interest.

The Ouachita Mountains surround the gardens’ 210 acres of beautiful wild forestry and manicured territories, and part of their shoreline runs along Lake Hamilton, offering visitors stunning lakeside views. A highlight of the woodland estate is the award-winning Garden of the Pine Wind Japanese garden, which incorporates cascading streams, Asian-inspired bridges, and 300 types of Asian ornamental flora into a calming space for quiet meditation. Read more Address: 550 Arkridge Road, Hot Springs National Park, AR 71913, Phone: 501-262-9300

These images were taken  on our walk.

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Editor’s note:
I recognize that many people will have a different opinion of Marshall. I would like to publish those opinions. Please send them to the email address below and they will be published in their entirety.

By Ron Munden — ron@easttexasexposed.com — August 27, 2018

By the end of October I will have been back in Marshall for 17 years. I returned after an absence of 39 years.

During those 39 years I made infrequent visits back to Marshall. Based on my visits from 1970 through 1999, I was certain I would never return to Marshall to live. I liked the people in Marshall but based on many conversations it was clear that Marshall could not get things accomplished. I did not want to live in a place like that.

As we entered the 2000s, motivated by an aging mother, I increased my visits to Marshall. During those visits I thought I saw a glimmer of hope for Marshall. There was talk of an infusion of private money from some of the wealthier member of the community and talk of a change in attitude of Marshall’s citizens.

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Friends of Marshall Animals — Wow! Midland, Texas, is getting a new animal shelter, to be completed in 2020, because their current shelter is TOO SMALL. Granted, Midland is much larger than Marshall, takes in more animals annually (over 5,000 compared to 2,000 t0 3,000) but , their shelter is projected to cost a total of $5 MILLION! Our Plan U is projected to cost $1.3. Midland appears to be more caring about the plight of their animals. Shame on you, Marshall!

MIDLAND – Midland city leaders are moving forward with a plan to build a new animal shelter.

City council members approved a resolution during Tuesday’s meeting awarding a bid for over $470,000 to Quorum Architects of Fort Worth.

This portion of the project includes pre-design services, basic services and special services.

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MOUNT PLEASANT, Texas – Mount Pleasant, Texas officials said their animal shelter is too small for the thousands of pets that are brought there every year. Now, construction on a new facility is underway.

City officials said they’re counting on the public to support the new facility. “Our goal is to reduce the number of animals we have to euthanize,” said Mount Pleasant Police Chief Wayne Isbell.

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By Barbara Kenney

Editor’s Note:
Even seasoned travelers can have bad trips. The Kenney family travel frequently but as you will see when you read this story not all trips are good trips.

By Barbara Kenney

How can a trip to the Big Island of Hawaii be a trip to hell? Well, it started the day before we left when Sylvia, our housekeeper, discovered that we have a rat problem in the house. In exploring we found evidence in several places and called Terminex immediately. It took a leap of faith to let them have a key to our house so they could perform their magic while we were gone, but we really had no choice.

Our trip to the airport and flight to Hawaii were uneventful, but the tranquility didn’t last long. When we checked into our room at the Kingsland Time Share, they gave us a room that looked strange from the beginning and became more so as we explored. Our first clues were that there were no cabinet doors under the kitchen sink, and the washing machine was one story only. The bathroom seemed like a gigantic waste of space, and we wondered who their architect was. We decided this must be a handicapped room, which we definitely didn’t request. Then all of a sudden I thought – I wonder if there is a shower in that monster bathroom. There wasn’t! Only a giant bathtub in the middle of that wasted space. I really needed a shower, so I climbed carefully into the tub and took a tub bath.

The problem began when I tried to get out.

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By Ron Munden — ron@easttexasexposed.com — August 22, 2018

Only in Marshall
Where else would a city government hire a consultant to write a business plan for a major facility and agree to pay the person $125/hour for their work without reviewing similar projects that the consultant completed in the past 5 years?

During a working meeting after the draft business plan was submitted to the city, the City Commissioners were surprised to hear that the city’s consultant had never developed a business plan before taking on this assignment.

You don’t always get what you pay for
When you pay $125/hour you should expect a professional high-quality product. Marshall did not get that, but you can’t expect someone to hit a home run on their first time at bat. You should expect City staff and the City Commissioners to be better guardians for the city’s money.

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By William “Doc” Halliday

When you take on a task or a project, do you give a commitment to do your very best? Or do you only make a perfunctory effort?

Decades ago, I observed a man sweeping the sidewalk in front of an isolated store in a desert area. The parking area was not paved, and the wind blew frequently. Any area that this man swept was soon to be covered in dust again. Yet, he gave it his finest, comprehensive effort. He picked up every item on the sidewalk in order to ensure that no dust escaped his broom, and then replaced that object in its now clean (albeit temporarily so) spot. I wish I could have spoken to him in depth, but I was not fluent in the language. This is a great employee! Do you have individuals like this that work for you? Or, would your efforts for your employer put this man to shame?

For years I told a story about Jimmy Carter, believing it to be true, as I had obtained the story from a reliable source. As a young naval officer, the future President of the United States was assigned to the nuclear submarine program under Admiral Rickover. That much is true. The untrue or at least unverified story is that Carter was given an assignment to write a report on a particular subject. He did, and handed the report in to the Admiral. Several days later the report was sent back to Carter with “Is this the best you can do?” scrawled across the front.

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