Of Figs and Peppers

“Write what you know,” goes the usual advice.

So… I’m writing this series of short humorous novels. I’ve mentioned before that the stories take place in Palestine, Texas, which happens to be my home town.

I set some key events in Book 2 in late October, during Palestine’s annual “Hot Pepper Festival.” Then I realized I’ve never actually attended the festival. For the sake of research (and another excuse to eat at Little Mexico), I decided to spend that weekend in Palestine.

A friend had posted on Facebook, recommending a B&B just off downtown. We could walk right to all the action.

Not having to park downtown during the chaos of a local festival, complete with parade?


With that in mind, I reserved a room at Fig Tree Manor. I’d drive over on Friday morning–I had people and places to see–and Brent would join me on Saturday.

One place I wanted to visit was the historic Redlands Hotel. My ol’ high school friend Kevin recently helped launch a Smooth Rock radio station (93.5 FM), and had posted that they were broadcasting from the Redlands. I had to pop by and check it out.

Yeah, there’s an office upstairs, with the computers and mics and stuff. But where do Kevin and his co-DJ Marc broadcast their live morning show? Well, from a table in the first-floor art gallery, of course. (Ooo-kay… why not?) They sit right in front of the picture window (“Our Window on the World,” they call it) and play music and keep everyone updated on the latest local goings-on.

Kevin was running around getting ready for the Hot Pepper Festival. While I waited for him to orbit back to the studio / art gallery / hotel / Building of Historic Awesomeness, I looked at some beautifully nostalgic watercolor paintings… then got to meet the artist.

David Tripp paints country and small-town scenes, nature, railroad art, and antiques. Here he is with some of his work. (Like it? Click here to visit his website, or HERE to visit his blog.)

After duly having dinner at Little Mexico, it was time to go back to the B&B to recharge. PERFECT place for relaxing!

Tom, our host, cooks up a fabulous breakfast that is friendly to any dietary preferences you might have. You want a little kick in your omelette? — hang on, let’s grab a banana pepper from the garden out back. An array of teas and Keurig coffees ensure you are fueled with your favorite caffeine (or non-). And all from this vintage little kitchen…

I tell ya, that home town of mine gets more interesting all the time. Let’s hope my novellas can do it justice.

Thanks for reading,

About Jan C. Johnson

Welcome! If you like food, reading, laughing over life's little disasters, and maybe thinking about the bigger things of life, you have come to the right place. Besides blogging, I write humorous fiction, though real life tends to leave fictional humor in the shade. But I'm not a total goofball. No, really. I'm also working on a biography project. I live in North Texas with my husband, Brent. We enjoy bicycling, Mexican food, and traveling to visit our kids and grandkids.
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9 Responses to Of Figs and Peppers

  1. DONNA PRICE says:

    So when are you going to be published?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That sounds like so much fun. And no appliances! yay!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. davidtripp says:

    Jan, I cannot thank you enough for giving me this special shout out! I have been away from Palestine for about 2 weeks now. Kevin has promised me a look at your manuscript, and I cannot wait to get back and see it!

    Liked by 1 person

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