Water made the Hill Country, streams and rivers carving the ancient plateau and giving “rise” to the hills seen today.
Water’s influence is definitive. And, floods notwithstanding, this influence is realized slowly and quietly over geologic time: placid surfaces and floating leaves belying the furious power and mysterious tangle of life beneath.

Curiously enough, the word influence itself is aquatic in origin:

  • The action or fact of flowing in … said of the action of water and other fluids, and of immaterial things conceived of as flowing in.
  • The inflowing … (into a person or thing) of any kind of … secret power or principle

What is the secret power that sometimes infuses a place? What is the influence of the Frio River? Such forces are notoriously fluid and hard to pin down. Maybe the place to begin the search is underneath the surface.