Sunday, September 16, 2007

Down on the Bayou

Even though we live in the urban sprawl of over 6 million people that is Houston, John and I still have a little piece of nature to escape to when everyday city life becomes overwhelming. One of our favorite places to run, walk, and bike is along Buffalo Bayou, a quick five minute drive from our place. Yesterday morning we took a four mile walk around the loop. I brought my camera along and taking pictures made me really appreciate having this place so close.

So come along on a virtual walk with us now!

We start out at a beautiful, unique fountain. Often times this is full of white suds, a prank of local high school aged kids. I also have a theory that there is some kind of sensor for wind speeds, because when it is windy outside, it's always off! As you continue walking towards downtown, you reach Art Park. The sidewalk is painted blue and white alternating word combinations that have blue in them (blue moon, blue bonnet, blue grass, blue balls :-). There is also a strange statue that to me sort of resembles Buddha on stilts.



Here are some views of the water itself. As you can see, the water is pretty brown, but in places, very serene and calm. The park system has done an amazing job removing non-native species and trying to restore the area to it's natural state. Of course, it's hard to ignore the many freeway bridges crossing above you and there are constant reminders that this is the major drainage for most of the city (i.e. lots of trash in spots).



Along Buffalo Bayou is the downtown's unofficial dog park. This area is often underwater when we're had significant rain. There's even a few hills along the Bayou! If you're looking for hill training, you'd better enjoy running up and down the same hill over and over again. You can see John making his way up. There is also a wetland conservation area along the Bayou. I spent one Saturday helping to clean up and remove non-natives. If you look hard (bottom left) you can see part of the frisbee golf course that is also along the bayou.


There is also the second largest urban bat colony located along the bayou. This is a bridge you always approach with speed and a large breath.... whew it smells! How cool though to have a colony of bats right here in the city. We paused over the bridge and saw this turtle just hanging out in the water.



So four miles later we had worked up an appetite, so we headed over to our favorite local breakfast place, Baby Barnaby's. It is named after the owner's deceased sheep dog, how sweet (notice the bone on the coffee cup)! It is always packed for breakfast on the weekends, a sure sign of a loyal following.



For breakfast I had pretty much one of the only things I can veganize on the menu :-( It's listed as a chicken burrito with egg white and black beans. I get the tortilla, balack beans, guacamole, salsa, and fresh tomatoes with a side of fruit. It is filling and delicious, but I can't help eyeing everyone else pancakes and french toast! As I may have mentioned before, I have found NO place in Houston that serves an outright vegan breakfast option. No tofu scrambles, vegan waffles or pancakes, nothing. This place has veggie sausage but it isn't vegan. What's sad is this place has the right clientel to appreciate this kind of addition. So I've decided to write them a letter to try and get a vegan dish on the menu... or even just add soy milk and vegan sausage. Anything would be an improvement. I'll let you know how my quest to find vegan pancakes in the city of Houston turns out....

14 comments:

urban vegan said...

Great walk and great breakfast.

I love bats--I just think they're adorable.

the pleasantly plump vegan said...

great pictures.

also, that breakfast looks lovely. too bad you don't have a place to go out for breakfast. good thing you know how to make stuff at home! i have a pretty decent pancake/waffle recipe if you ever need one. i think i have posted about it before, actually.

Celine said...

fingers crossed for the letter to work out and for you to finally get to eat a nice vegan breakfast instead of having to drool on non-vegan pancakes and such!

Johanna3 said...

great post, love the photos!

VeggieGirl said...

I really hope you are able to get positive feedback from writing that letter!! restaurants need to start catering to other consumers besides meat-eaters!! on a more pleasant note, the food on the plate that you DO have looks pretty good :0)

Vicki's Vegan Vice said...

I enjoyed all your photos, and I wish you much success in your quest to find vegan pancakes in Houston, though I think your pictured breakfast looks mighty fine! :)

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

That looks like a great walk! My husband & I like to take long walks, we never get tired of the views of our city.

Veganista said...

Hi--I'm pretty new to your blog, enjoying it so far and will keep visiting! I love the idea of a bayou--never actually lived near one--so nice to come along on this walk. Don't mind the look of those black beans either! Know what you mean about eyeing other people's pancakes and french toast though. Lately I have been dismayed to realize how few places offer a vegan dessert option...

The Little Vegan said...

Aww thanks for the nice comments on my blog :o)… And I’m really glad to have met YOU through the blog world!

Emilie said...

The bayou is beautiful and I love your photo mosaics.

Good luck in your quest--a little nudge in the vegan direction can only be a good thing for Houston!

Ruthie said...

I love Buffalo Bayou! :- ) The Houston Bayou's are pretty dirty but very unique and dynamic. Russell and I like to canoe in them. :) When I move back, we can have a breakfast or brunch party... then at least we can have vegan pancakes without one of us having to make them. :- )

At least you found a place you can order a breakfast burrito. I usually end up getting oatmeal with maple syrup and nuts whenever I go out. I sit there eating thinking.. I could have made this at home for like, 50 cents. Sigh sigh. :)

I love your crafts by the way!

Ruthie

Vegan*asm said...

What a neat idea. You have really brought out the beauty in Houston with your pictures. I guess it can be a pretty city sometimes. And I know what you mean about the lack of vegan breakfasts. Although, Field of Greens used to have an awesome vegan brunch on the weekends. They had all the fixins, even pancakes. Sadly, they stopped doing it because no one was coming. Major bummer.

bazu said...

Wow, everything looks so gorgeous! That meal, especially. I'm learning more about Houston from you than I ever knew before- I've never been to TX, actually. The closest I've come is New Orleans to the east and Arizona on the west- so not even close, I guess!

Anonymous said...

what about moveable feast? yes, it's in a shopping center, but it has tons of delightful vegan goodness. my family lives in houston, and i love your blog. i live in california now, where i think most people are vegan, thank seitan. not to brag ;)