ELECTRA WAGGONER BIGGS is in the driver’s seat, steering away from the blanched walls and terra-cotta tiles of her ranch house, past a lawn mottled with shade, down an allée flanked by marigolds and crape myrtle. Sprinklers moisten the grass. This is Electra’s private world, an emerald sanctuary tucked inside the biggest chunk of real estate in Texas.
Electra looks like a 79-year-old heiress should: pale skin, erect posture, prominent nose, and a crown of golden hair whose upkeep is the point of her weekly trip to the beauty salon in Wichita Falls. Suddenly she brakes while a cluster of buzzards flaps skyward, exposing a pulpish mass on the roadway. “Nasty things,” she says and drives on.
Past a wrought iron gate at the end of her driveway, the artifice ends and the landscape reverts to sere reds and browns. For four generations the Waggoner family has