I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Sometimes it is hard to be thankful given what life has taken from me over the past year or so. But then I remember how lucky I was to have had such great people in my life. I am so thankful I had Jason for the 26 years I had him. I wish I had more, but those were some pretty wonderful 26 years. I am lucky I had my parents for as long as I had them. Mom had 94 pretty healthy years. Dad had 88 years, although 17 of them were pretty tough on him. When I think of Thanksgiving, I certainly think of the wonderful meals I had with my family over the many years, but it also makes me think of Texas. It was Thanksgiving weekend and the Fal Der Al party on Saturday of that weekend that first got us to Texas 20+ years ago thanks to our friends, the Schofields. We loved it so much that we bought a house in the Cordillera development in Boerne and, of course, we continued to go to the Fal Der Al parties every year we could. We considered moving to Texas and having Jason go to Boerne high at one point, but we decided it was too hard to leave our friends and family in California.
Jason loved Texas. He learned to shoot a BB gun from our friend Tom there. Within minutes of his first lesson, he was nailing every can and bottle on the fence. We had go-carts and mini bikes on our property and Jason loved zipping around Cordillera in his go-cart. He loved taking other little kids for the rides of their lives in the fastest go-cart. There was one time when I caught him and his friend Marc zipping around in the go-cart in the dirt and shooting the bb gun randomly while the go-cart hopped all over. I had to take the bb gun away for awhile after that. They are lucky they didn't shoot their eye out. lol... Jason met new friends there and brought many of his California friends out to visit.
We took our friends, the Burows, to Texas one year during the winter holidays. It was quite a memorable week. We went to the safari park and met Clyde the Camel who hocked a loogie all over Dale's brand new jacket. Admittedly, I almost threw up when that happened. We were chased by Ostrich's. Poor Jason was in the back of our golf cart and nearly missed being pecked by a crazed ostrich. But he was his usual hysterical self, making sure we all knew the eminent danger he was facing. We laughed so hard that day. We also took them to our favorite store in Fredricksberg where you can sample every sauce, dip and dressing imaginable. Jason and the Burow's decided they were tough enough to head into the over 21 hot sauce room and tried the hottest sauce they had. Needless to say, everyone ran out of their searching for water, milk, ice cream and anything else that could calm the fire in their mouths. Jason, of course, was the loudest of all of them. I think they all suffered a couple of days thanks to that hot sauce.
Texas is known for their music and we made sure to hit many of the best music bars there. We hit Gruene Hall in Gruene Texas several times. Jason learned the two-step there. We took our friends, The Rose's and others to Luckenbach to enjoy some good old down home Texas music. While Jason never really liked country music, he did a great job faking it and blending in no matter where we went.
The Fal Der Al party was the highlight of Texas for us. Each year, our friends Tom and Jan would host the party at their house in Boerne. Tom had built the greatest "Texas" outdoor kitchen you can imagine. It was rustic but had every modern convenience. It was perfect for Texas. Everyone brought food and the hosts would cook pig, quails, pigeons and, sometimes, if we were lucky, crawfish. The party lasted from 10am till the last guest dropped around 2am. There would be multiple bands throughout the day and enough incredible food and drink to fill our bellies beyond their capacity. Each year the party would include a "washer" tournament. It was one of the highlights for Jason, especially as he got older. He loved the competition and the camaraderie. I don't recall if he ever won the tournament, but I know he came close a few times. Music was also a key part of the party. 2 years ago, when the drummer from the evening band stopped to take a break, Jason decided, given his Rock Band skills, that he could take over the drums. Of course, he had drank quite a bit that day. So, he walked up to the stage, sat down, and started drumming. and totally entertained the crowd. The lead singer did give him a look initially, but soon realized that Jason's charm was winning over the audience, so he let him continue to play. It was hysterical. Jason was, as we all know, always the dancer. He would do his best to country dance, but he would bust out his normal non-country moves no matter what song was playing anyway. I loved dancing with him there as did every other woman. Unfortunately, we missed the Fal Der Al this year because we just couldn't go without Jason. But we will go again and celebrate his Texas life with all of our friends there one of these days.
We are so thankful for all of our Texas friends, our California friends, our relatives throughout the country and for our memories of Jason that will help us throughout the remainder of our lives. May y'all have a wonderful holiday season....
Hi, I'm Jan Franklin. I am and will always be Jason Franklin's mother. He was everything to me. He brought such joy to me and so many others in his short life. I will never ever forget him.