A very refined area

Yesterday I couldn’t spell “expert on Houston” and now I are one!

I didn’t realize the city was an ocean port. It’s 50 miles inland from Galveston, which really is on the gulf.

Ah, commerce….the pressure of commerce can accomplish sooo much. Houston took advantage of the rivers that flow through it into the large bay behind Galveston, and dug channels deeper and wider. Now, large ocean liners can come almost into the heart of the city!

DSC_2994_aVoilà, the Port of Houston ranks first in the United States in international waterborne tonnage handled and second in total cargo tonnage handled. It has the world’s largest concentration of healthcare and research institutions, and only New York City is home to more Fortune 500 headquarters. DSC_3006_aIt even has a Lamborghini dealership (right next to a Hyundai dealership).

DSC_3020_aBut oil and refining are huge. We drove for miles on just one road past continuous rows of giant storage tanks that stretched back 8 and 10 deep. We could see the pipes, stacks, and machinery for countless refineries all along the horizon. Shooting pictures was problematic: everything is so big, it blocks everything else; fences are everywhere; it’s all flat, so you can’t get up high and see the landscape. Oh, and we got chased away from one place, just because I was shooting from the street at their equipment!

DSC_3027_aHouston used the ship channel to display the San Jacinto Monument, the world’s tallest monumental column (567 feet; Washington Monument is 555 feet). It commemorates the decisive battle to establish Texas independence. Located at the same park is the USS Texas, a ship notable for being the oldest remaining dreadnought battleship, and for being one of only six remaining ships to have served in both World Wars.

We spent our whole day around the shipping channel! Gonna hafta come back again to see the rest….

6 thoughts on “A very refined area

  1. You’re about about an our from our Robt & Kathy in Lk Jackson. They’be taken us to Houston many times–much to see there. The zoo is great. Museums are too. There’s a children’s museum with a lot of hands-on stuff.

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