Stopping for Barbecue on the Way Back to Houston

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Dodging Hurricane Ike last Friday, Juliet Stewart led her family and friends out to Giddings to stay on some land she owns there. Fourteen men, women and children from Missouri City, Sunnyside and the Southeast end of Houston camped out in two RVs, a tractor-trailer and a car. I ran into the caravan in the parking lot of the famous Southside Market on Highway 290 in Elgin. Juliet Stewart's brother, Pete Pryor, who was driving one of the RVs, said they were on their way back home now.

"You know, if you are coming from Giddings, you're heading in the wrong direction," I pointed out to Drexler Stewart, Juliet's son who was driving the tractor-trailer.

"I know, I know. She wouldn't let us go back to Houston until she we came here to get some barbecue," he said nodding his head toward his mom, Juliet Stewart.

Most of the family had never been to Southside Market before and Juliet Stewart, who grew up in Giddings, thought they should experience the place as long as they were so close. And besides, the family matriarch confessed that she was extremely fond of Elgin "hot guts," as the legendary sausage is known. She also had some pork ribs on her piece of butcher paper when I sat down to talk with her.

The Stewart family was duly impressed by the sausage. Juliet wrapped up some extra for the road. I told them that Highway 290 was open, but there wasn't any electricity or water in most of Houston. They said they knew that, but one of the women worked for the city and had to get back to go to work on Monday. I wished them all a safe trip as we parted ways in the meat market parking lot. -- Robb Walsh

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