Ode to Texas by @evalongoria
/ In this one expansive state, there are the surfers in a sparkling city by the sea; the big, bustling cities of Houston and Dallas; the border; and the place most important to me, our ranch. Here, in land granted to my family in 1603, my sisters and I would rise early, grab a tortilla, and spend the day running through the woods. Dad worked the cattle, pigs, and chickens and grew crops of corn or watermelon. We girls would run. No other neighbor or house in sight. Just quiet. We’d watch a storm roll in. And on a clear night, climb to our roof to gaze at all the stars. In Texas, I learned to read the big sky. This is the land built by generations of Spanish explorers, indigenous tribes, Tejanos, and Irish. Sometimes we forget these brave, ambitious people are what made us strong. They are what we celebrate. This is where I have my land, my roots. Texas is home.
Photo by @babaktafreshi
/ A starry sky hovers above the 36-foot (11 m) Hobby-Eberly Telescope at the McDonald Observatory. One of the world’s largest optical telescopes, it is used for spectroscopy, the decoding of light from stars and galaxies.
This text and accompanying image are from “America the Beautiful,” a new Nat Geo book, with more than 200 images from all 50 states, highlighting America’s unique natural and cultural treasures. Check out Nat Geo’s link in bio to learn more.