When I left California a couple of weeks ago I promised my son that I'd get a picture of me wearing my grody, old, sweat-stained cowboy hat standing next to the road sign reading, "Welcome to Texas!" All state lines have them. Everything being bigger in Texas, I figured there'd be a rest stop, a picnic area, hell, maybe even a carnival with bands playing. Surely there would be a horde of travelers waiting in line to have their photos snapped alongside what must be a Texas-sized "Howdy!" sign the size of an aircraft carrier.
I flew past this little piece of Americana on I-40 at 75 mph. No place to stop and no way to slow down. It was only thanks to my excited anticipation that I had my camera phone poised in hand to catch this little pissant of a welcome sign as it flew past my bug-spattered windshield.
But Texans are like that. A little wary of newcomers.
"Welcome...drive friendly, the Texas way."
The smiles are warm and genuine. But rest assured, they are paying attention to your conduct and behavior.