What happens when one Vancouver Sun columnist and her aunt decide to see the great state of Texas from a car, a Greyhound bus and a train? Well, nothing terribly exciting, though Susan Riley's recounting of her trip through Texas, including stops in Dallas and Austin and elsewhere, provides a intriguing snapshot from the outsider's perspective. A sample below. --Robert Wilonsky
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"While we didn't set out to take a core sample of the American class system, that's what we got: snapshots of an acquisitive, gas-guzzling, fried-chicken-gobbling, moneyed class; the mostly Hispanic and black working poor jammed into San Antonio's grimy bus station; and a scattering of non-conformists -- students, soldiers and families -- riding the rails. We learned quickly that the true untouchables in the Texas caste system are the carless."