Of course all things rusty are charming to me, especially when they are nestled in rich greenery, so I found this first face of Texas enchanting. And the fact that any part of the state was green in June surprised me, but here were not only green cacti and healthy sage, but also meadows of grass and wildflowers amid the red, rocky hills. I delighted in the yucca that were throwing blooms like white fireworks as I wound my way down through the Davis Mountains to check out the McDonald Astronomical Observatory just northwest of Fort Davis. The road (TX118), which takes you to 6971 feet, is so pine-laden, the air seems almost heavy with the smell of sap. Visitors to the observatory can count the stars through an array of telescopes, and once a month (by reservation only), you can fondle the big guns, a 107- and a 340-inch scope normally hoarded by University of Texas students.