PLACE National Museum of Funeral History
415 Barren Springs Dr
Houston, TX 77090
After our weekend of excessive eating in Austin we packed up, thanked our hosts for letting us park our crappy looking RV in their nice suburban driveway, and headed out towards Houston. Now I’ve never really heard anyone say nice things about Houston, Paul isn’t quite as rude about Houston as he is towards Dallas, but it’s pretty close. We had a few things we were keen to see however, mostly Johnson Space Center, the Rothko chapel, a recreation of the Terra Cotta Warriors at Forbidden Gardens, and a funeral museum. We also had a friend who was in town, and of course, Paul had heard Houston had one really good bar.
On the way in we hit our first bit of disappointment, the Forbidden Gardens had closed. Auctioned off even, which is about as closed as you can get. It was a 40 acre park with re-creations of the Forbidden City, and a ⅓ scale replica of the 6000 Terra Cotta warriors and a few other well known Chinese sites. The owner was a rich businessman from Seattle who was originally from Hong Kong and annoyed that Asian-American kids don’t know enough about Chinese history, so he bought some cheap land in Texas and dropped $20 million to build it. However freeway expansion for suburban Houston meant the site had to move, and it was also in need of weather related repairs, (turns out the weather in Texas is bad.) so instead they decided to close it down. I read the soldiers went for as little as $50 each at the auction, which we just missed, but we don’t have room for a 4 foot statue in the coach anyway.