We recently spent a delightful, long weekend exploring Houston in the great…
We set up household in a whimsical B & B called, Robin’s Nest (Robin was the innkeeper) on W. Main Street in the Museum District.
With it’s Victorian charm and Robin’s eclectic choices of design & decor (mostly influenced by MacKenzie-Childs) the main house, called the Big Nest, was colorful and inviting.
We checked in and then walked the 3 blocks over to Montrose, one of Houston’s trendy neighborhoods where art and good food dwell side by side by side.
We chose the Black Labrador, a very British corner pub.
Standard pub fare was offered and their version of “Bubble & Squeak” made a perfectly delicious vegetarian mid-afternoon meal for us. Before we headed back to our room, we took some time to play in their garden!
It was clear that Houstonians enjoy their yards just as much as we do in Atlanta. The steamy, semi-tropical climate makes for gorgeous blooms and interesting succulents. The walk back to our nest was a botanical delight!
Honeysuckle was everywhere, oozing its hot, sweet and heady perfume.
Our cozy room called, Cindy’s, was located in the Little Nest, a charming mid-1920′s bungalow. It boasted richly colorful decor with lots of tapestry-like fabrics, silk tassels everywhere and wooden shades that cast those wonderfully, film noir type shadows on the wall.
We spent many pleasant hours on our private front porch where we read and talked and enjoyed our lattes.
Located directly across the street from Houston’s High School of the Performing Arts, we awoke after our “siesta” to find that sometime during the carpool hour, our rental car had been clipped and the front bumper had fallen off!! We counted our blessings that day. The young man that had done the damage had left his name and phone number and after a pleasant phone call we had all of his info in hand to report to the rental company when we returned there the next day to exchange the car.
Have Bumper Will Travel…
Undeterred by our now Beverly Hillbillies looking and sounding type of transportation, we gingerly made our way over to the campus of Rice University. Destination – the Media Center, where Adrien would be screening his newest films that evening.
Adrien and his classmate, Gabi’s short film, (Working Title - Ehyeh asher ehyeh), was beautifully written and directed. Travis, an 11- year-old boy growing up in a strongly religious household, reveals to his parents that he has lost faith in God. After a discussion with a crazy pastor only leaves him more confused, it’s going to take some divine intervention to restore his faith!
Adrien was also on the production team for a second piece, Lovett Long Take. As the night winds down, witness what remains of the best party of the year!
We thoroughly enjoyed this event and it was evident that all of the film students put lots of time and hard work into their creations all the while having lots of fun!
Next, we headed over to the Brochstein Pavilion for a Digital Media Exhibition and then visited Rice’s 2010 Annual Student Art Exhibition, TEAM ART, featuring the very varied styles of 18 art students.
For a late dinner that night, we chose the Istanbul Grill, a cozy Turkish restaurant located in Rice Village. We all enjoyed a delicious entree called Leihmaenn (sort of a vegetarian pita pizza wrap) while listening to authentic Turkish music.
The next day, after a restful slumber, we strolled through the garden over to the Big Nest for breakfast. Each morning we were treated to a nice meal in the dining room.
After taking care of the rental car swap, we took a leisurely drive down Westheimer. If you are familiar with the Miracle Mile in Manhasset, NY, it’s like that only ten times longer! Block after block after block of only the most upscale retail. A shopper’s delight! No stopping to shop for us though, we were on a quest. That morning I had come across an issue of a magazine that I had never heard of….
This little ad caught my attention…
Even though there was no answer when I called, Denis said it would be a pleasant drive and it was! Although the little tea room was not open for business when we arrived, I was able to take a peek inside and will make a note that we must return there for tea the next time we travel to Houston.
Next stop, Borders, for something new and delightful to read. Denis indulged me while I selected 10 books and took some time reading a few pages of each before I finally selected, The Forgotten Garden, by Kate Morton, a sumptuous 500 pager filled with just the right amount of mystery, exotic locales and a cast of characters and action that had me turning page after page any chance I got for the next few days!
Back to Cindy’s Room for a lazy afternoon of picnicking, reading and napping!
Who ever would have thought that coffee machine filters make the perfect serving pieces!
Adrien was busy, busy, busy all day with his college work and activities. He was able to carve out a little time to join us for dinner at La Mexicana on Montrose. I had the delicious Spinach Enchilada and the boys each had a veggie burrito that, no kidding, was as big as a football!! Well, as Adrien said, “we are in Texas!”
The next day we explored more of the surrounding neighborhoods on foot and by car. We also spent a good part of the afternoon in our favorite spot on the porch just relaxing and watching the little vegetable garden grow!!
An early dinner with Adrien at Niko Niko’s on Montrose offered up delicious Felafal and Greek Fries served with 3 yummy sauces, tzaziki, tahini and a spicy, tomatoey one.
As the evening approached our anticipation mounted. Tonight was going to be a special night. The Rice Philharmonics were having their All-Request Concert, followed by their new CD Release Party!
We arrived at the Lovett Commons just in time to see Adrien rehearsing one of his solos, Campus!
The show was fantastic with each of the talented members having their turn in the spotlight. Many of the tunes we heard appear on their slick new CD, Epoch.
After purchasing some CD’s, we headed out and left the Phil’s and their friends already enjoying themselves at the CD Release Party Bash!
The next day, mid-morning, we arrived at Adrien’s dorm and helped him pack up some clothing and paraphernalia to bring back home to Atlanta for the summer. His Freshman year at Rice is very nearly over! It seems like yesterday that we road tripped down with all of his gear! And now we will be reversing the journey very soon.
We had brunch at the Black Walnut Cafe in Rice Village. The boys had fluffy veggie omelets. I tried a Kolache, having seen them advertised all over town. Mine was stuffed with spinach and melted cheese all wrapped up in the savory and crunchy pastry.
And now it was time to bring Adrien back to the beautiful campus of Rice University.
Good luck with your final exams!
See you in a few….
We love you!
And farewell Houston, you, 4th largest city in the U.S., you,