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The Roaming Gnome Hits the State Fair of Texas

Chaps, I have two words for you: Fried Butter.

When I heard they’d be serving it at the State Fair of Texas last weekend, I knew I had to pop over to Dallas and see what all the fuss was about. A moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips, you say? Bah humbug! I defy you to try Fried Butter without swooning. And just for kicks, I had a slice of Fried Pizza too. Calories, schmalories. If fair food is wrong, I don’t want to be right.

News Flash: Hurricane Dolly

Travelers with plans to visit Texas and Mexico may have their plans interrupted by Hurricane Dolly, a Category 1 hurricane.

Air travelers should contact their carrier for information on flight changes and cancellations. Airlines may issue flexible policies for customers who wish to reschedule their trips. American Airlines, Continental, and Delta have all issued flexible-travel policies.

Click here for a list of airline phone numbers.

Travelocity customers should refer to the FAQ page for more information and contact information for our Customer Care representatives.

Top Cities for Singles

If you’re still looking for Mr. Right or Ms. Walks-on-Air this February 14th, you might wonder if your chances would be improved by a visit to Valentine, Texas or Valentine, Nebraska. Recently a single friend suggested I write a travel blog called: You Don’t Have to Go to Alaska to Meet the Man of Your Dreams. She wanted me to figure out where the most single men live so that she could vacation accordingly.

Travel Misconceptions: Demystifying the Lone Star State

A blizzard tore through the Texas Panhandle this weekend. Wipe that disbelieving frown off your face; yes, it snows in Texas. I awoke on my second morning home for the holidays to see white gusts blowing sideways outside my window. We were house-bound, and the snow rendered the roads so impassable that an 80-car pileup slammed into I-40, just outside Amarillo (which is about 120 miles south of my hometown, Perryton). On the rural plains, there are no trees, no tall buildings, no blips on the flat surface of the landscape to break the winds and provide a buffer from the onslaught of winter weather. Not only does it snow in Texas, but the conditions snowstorms bring are fiercer and more violent here than I’ve ever experienced in my going-on-8-years in the Northeast.

With not much to keep me occupied (I taught my sister to play Scrabble, started a jigsaw puzzle, and read four cookbooks cover to cover) I began to think about the misconceptions that plague my not-so-humble home state. As travelers, we encounter misconceptions (others’ and our own) with the regularity of delayed flights; this single phenomenon encompasses one of travel’s greatest challenges and the root of its greatest rewards. And it’s because we understand this that it’s our duty to dispel misconceptions wherever and whenever we are qualified. As a born-and-bred Texan who is actually quite fond of her home state, but whose first impulse upon telling others of her origins is to assure them that she isn’t, I think it’s high time to set the record straight. Please take a moment to get the cowboys-and-guns jokes out of your system. Now, coming to you straight from the Lone Star State, here are the five things every Texan wishes others understood.

Photo courtesy of IgoUgo member bmwhd