Somewhere in Northeast Texas there is a small plot of land that is known to me and my friends simply as Bowie. It is in fact not Bowie, Tx. Bowie happens to be a town in Montague County started in 1881 and named after the legendary brawler and defender of the Alamo, James "Jim" Bowie and is about four miles away.
For the last 6 or so years this place serves as an escape for me and my friends. It's a little bit of land that was at one point in the past farmed. There has been good hard work done on this land in the past and now it has been relegated to grazing cattle.
Grazing cattle and entertaining me and my close friends when the burden of our fast paced, digital age lives become too great to bear. When this happens and the pressure of being civilized builds to critical mass we load up and rally together to make the pilgrimage to the little slice of computer-less heaven we call Bowie.
In Bowie there aren't many amenities for the thrill seeker. There isn't free Wi-Fi or continental breakfasts. In fact there's not a whole lot of anything. There is a barn with some old junk in it. There's some dirt and there are some trees and grass. There are also a ton of good memories.
There is a bond between the men who have made Bowie their refuge. We all make the trip, which as life relocates us has become a pilgrimage across the state for some, for the singular purpose of getting away and enjoying each other's company.
We go to relax and sit by the fire reconnect with one another. We go to express ourselves in ways often frowned on by more in more civil climates.
There is unnecessary screaming and shouting. There is midnight dirt bike and three wheeler riding. We take full advantage of our second amendment right to bear arms. Sometimes we do all three at once. In this little oasis things often get savage. A man can belch, scratch and micturate where he pleases as he pleases.
The fun had here is brought here. This is not an amusement park. Bowie is not a day-spa or a hunting camp. It's a Tabula Rossa, a canvas, nothing but dirt and grass and trees until we show up with the fun. Sure Bowie has things that entertain things such as fantastic sunrises and sunsets and innumerable stars to sleep under, but it takes creativity to entertain yourself. There's not TV or YouTube out there for you. There are jokes, songs, acoustic guitars and stories. It's like life analog, where you take the time to feel a whole day go by. There's no rush to get to what's next.
I find the fellowship time provided by the lack of distraction is the most valuable. Even close friends can lose touch when the daily grind of life is applied. I am always reminded when in Bowie why I would not abandon my closest friends for anything. There have been laughs and arguments that have stopped just short of fist fights. Still by the time the fire had burned down everyone was chums again.