[George Covington is a local photographer, columnist and celebrity whom people from all walks of life treasure as an inspiration. Born legally blind, with less than ten percent of normal vision, George first achieved national attention for using photography as a seeing tool. Read more of his thoughts at the Alpine Avalanche.]
Many West Texans were surprised by an item in Neiman Marcus’ 2010 Christmas catalog. The item involved Alpine’s western suburb of Marfa. I quote…
“How did a quiet West Texas town of 2,121 become a thriving international hub for art, culture, architecture, and nature?… A personal concierge will work with the recipients to create a one-of-a-kind experience of three days and four nights…For culture lovers, the Ballroom Marfa converted dance hall is home for a cutting-edge nonprofit arts center. Or perhaps a private party to meet artists and hometown residents, enjoying gourmet food and local music…Price does not include transportation.”
This thrilling tour of little Marfa will only set you back $9,500. Folks, I am not making this up. But I think I can go it one better. As I personally feel Alpine is at least ten times more diverse than Marfa in the arts and culture fields, I will personally conduct a Neiman Marcus-type tour of Alpine for a mere $95,000. My press release will read in part…
“How did a small bucolic village in West Texas become such an international center of culture, art and cuisine? The three-day and four-night tour will be conducted by George A. Covington, the only blind tour guide west of the Pecos and will cover the social, cultural, and artistic highlights of this idyllic little town. (Price does not include transportation.)”
For their $95,000 I will treat them to a taste of Alpine’s internationally renowned cuisine of many flavors. The finest in breakfast cuisine will be found wildly popular Judy’s Bread and Breakfast. Orders are placed directly with the kitchen staff, which makes for the freshest breakfast in West Texas. Coffee refills are free. We will continue with lunch at the regionally renowned Oriental Express where a wide selection of foods of the Oriental can be chosen from the buffet. Upon request, the wait staff will even speak Chinese. Dinner will be at the delectable La Trattoria, where the finest in Northern Italian foods can be found on the menu. Although no Italian is spoken, upon request, waiters will sing several of Dean Martin’s greatest hits. Later, we may drop by for a snack at Julia Child’s favorite hangout, Alpine’s beloved Cow-Dog.
Our visitors will be treated to Alpine’s robust, international cocktail and spirits scene by visits beginning with Harry’s Tinaja, which bears a striking resemblance to Rick’s Place in the classic movie “Casablanca.” Specializing in international beer (remember Budweiser and Miller are now owned by Belgian breweries) our guests can also imbibe in certain exotic brands such as Pearl Beer (if we don’t like them) and Shiner beer (if we do like them). Moving on to the fabulous entertainment center known locally as The Railroad Blues, we can listen to renowned local bands such as The Doodlin’ Hogwallops, Donkey Parade and the local Latino flavor of Rick and his Karaoke machine.
Alpine is covered in a virtual avalanche of art. Their $95,000 will guarantee their invitation to a board meeting of the Big Bend Arts Council at their Gallery On The Square. Filled to the rafters with fine artists of all descriptions this gathering is often described as Alpine’s closest thing to a comedy club. Our guests will be showered with all forms of artistic wit and wisdom.
What more can you expect for $95,000?