Houston, Texas: Land, Weather, Houses, Food, and Tollbooths - My Family Travels

As my five hour flight began its descent to Houston, Texas, I peered down through my window to observe its landscape, and what I saw surprised me.  I had always thought that Houston was extremely hot, and thus everything would be golden, dry, and dead.  However, the city was thriving with acres of lush green forestry.  here was so much land, and so much space!  Furthermore, the land is amazing flat!  Since I originally live in a valley, I always see hills in every direction I look.  Houston is different.  I do not see any hills or any distant mountains.  Earth stretched for miles in every direction.  Its evenness made the land and the clear blue sky seem even more spacious.  

Moreover, when the plane landed on Houston soil, it took forever to reach the plane’s gate.  The airport’s runway was just that huge, and everything was far away.
Besides the city’s terrain, I also noticed its unique weather and its architecture.  The weather was extremely humid and hot.  There was so much moisture in the air, and breathing was somewhat difficult.  The humidity provided my family exciting thunderstorms, and the heat kept us all indoors.  In the neighborhoods, there were very few sidewalks.  Perhaps the weather was too hot for people to take a stroll. 

Moreover, the houses around Houston tended to be made out of bricks, providing the neighborhood with a colorful reddish tint that complimented the green grass and the city’s blue spacious skies.  Coming from an area that is prone to earthquakes, I was shocked at first, “Wow!  What if there was an earthquake?!  All these brick houses would collapse!  We would all die!” 

However, because Houston is not located near a fault line and thus not prone to earthquakes, brick houses are extremely common.  In addition, homes in Houston tend to have very high ceilings.  This feature goes well with the city’s hot climate, for since heat rises, tenants can feel cooler at ground level.

A popular dish in the Houston area is boiled crawfish because Texas is right next to Louisiana.  A crawfish looks like a mini lobster, but the only edible part is the meat in its tail, for the claws are too small.  During its season, which is summer, its average price is two dollars per pound, and each crawfish is fresh and ironically large.  I had the chance to taste this wonderful dish and to witness it in the making.  Each crawfish is boiled until it is bright red and is seasoned with a special spicy powder uniquely called crawfish seasoning.  Another unique feature in Houston is its abundant amount of tollbooths on the freeway.  I thought tolls were only required at bridges, but I was wrong. In Houston, they are all over the freeway, and each time you pass one, you are required to pay up to one dollar.  This system is very strange to me, but I have to admit that the roads are extremely smooth.

Overall, I really enjoyed my trip to Houston, Texas this year.  I was able to see the diversity of America’s landscape, climate, and even culture.  I experienced new things, tried new food, and observed differences in architecture.  This trip allowed me to vividly see that each area’s way of life depends heavily on their surroundings, and I was able to reason why I see brick houses and why crawfishes were so cheap.  Houston made me realize how small my world is, how different a different a different state could be, and how much traveling can be a great learning experience.

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