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Sunday, March 26, 2023

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Under the Chinaberry Tree

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Monday, March 27
Michael Johnson Campbell Horses, etc
Tuesday, March 28
R. Agrasanches Harlingen Posters
Wednesday, March 29
Lu Mitchell Dallas Satire
Thursday, March 30
Harry Bob Martin Spur Theater
Friday, March 31
George Hallmark Meridian Artist
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by Tumbleweed Smith

When you cruise out of New Orleans, the muddy Mississippi is a blend of khaki colors. It stays that way for a hundred and twenty miles down the delta until you reach the point where the river empties into the Gulf of Mexico. We left at sunset and the colors of the sky were reflected in the water. There were shades of pink, blue, crimson and gold. As darkness fell, the water turned black with a silver path of moonlight stretching to the horizon. The foam on top of the waves was white, providing an ethereal panorama.

As morning developed, the black water had shades of copper as the sun made its way upward into the sky. While we stood at the railing, a dancing rainbow appeared just above the water. The red, yellow and green apparition was in contrast to the dark color of the water. Later, during the first day of the cruise, schools of flying fish the color of platinum played alongside the ship.

By noon, the water became a shimmering, silver sea. At mid afternoon the water was a deep, dark blue, the color only found on large bodies of water. The ship left a trail of light green with white highlights. When we docked at Cozumel, the western Caribbean displayed its best colors: dazzling aquamarine close to shore, a rich light blue that turned darker as the water got deeper.

But the water closest to the beach wasn't just one color. It had at least a dozen hues of green and blue. In shallow areas, the sea showcased the pure whiteness of the sandy bottom, the rusty red of the coral reef and the unbelievable bright yellows, blacks, reds and blues of tropical fish.

We stopped for a day at Roatan, a place I had never heard of before. It's an island off Honduras. The temperature was ninety degrees outside but the white sand was cool and almost moist, just right for walking on the beach and squishing your toes in the silky sand. The water was glass-clear and again had the color of a tropical paradise.

At Belize, we didn't spend much time on the water. We explored Mayan ruins. We did the same thing at Cancun, a city with a surprising population of nearly a million people. While looking at the ruins on a hill, two palm trees provided a perfect frame to view the beautiful water.

Returning to New Orleans, the ship passed over some rough, angry seas. The clouds were black and gray and we went through rainstorms with streaks of lightning and roaring thunder. The water was black and fierce, with mist dancing off the tops of giant waves. When we docked at New Orleans, the city was covered in snow. We picked a good time to travel to warm places.

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