Well, I just lost this post somehow. Fumble fingers on the keyboard, I guess.
Anyway, as I was trying to say: Your elected representatives have offices both at the capital (Austin or Washington) and in their home district. Making a visit to the district office is a good way for advocates to have an impact on legislation without the added expense of traveling to the capital.
Texas AIDS Network has developed a brief PowerPoint presentation to give you some tips about finding your representatives' district offices as well as how to get the most out of your visit. The presentation is called, originally enough, "The District Visit."
Right now the Texas legislature is in session, but, in these early days of the session, legislators frequently leave Austin on Thursday evening and return on Monday. Their district staff members are, of course, available all week long.
Congress is in session, too, but Congress takes a lot of breaks for "district work periods." The district staff members are also available even when Congress is in session.