Austin went by in a four-day blur. My son, Ian, accepted a job offer there. He was nice enough to asked his dad to accompany him to check the place out.
We’d never been there before but heard great things about it. We tried to "see everything" in the Texas capitol on our brief visit. To start off,
We devoured delicious barbecue at Ruby’s.
On the wall were letters of praise from Werner Herzog and Pee Wee Herman.
Statue of Texas blues legendStevie Ray Vaughan in a sprawling riverside park. The Austin resident died 27 years ago, at the age of 35, in a helicopter accident.
Every costumed participant was encouraged to take their time moving along the 3-mile route.
There were multiple opportunities to stop for beer, jello shots. or whizzing across Slip n' Slides.
This guy was getting his "dillo" ready to run. They lure them onward with dangling worms.
Groups of tweaking zombies are the norm. No one cares who crosses the finish line first.
Everyone wins in Austin.
When the temperature topped 100, we went for a swim in downtown’s Barton Springs. You have to drive 250 miles from Miami to find cool water like this bubbling up from the ground.
With undulating hills and the bright blue Colorado River winding through it, this ain’t no desert wasteland. Austin is hilly and happnin’!
That’s why our former Grove neighbors, Todd and Ashley Thompson, moved there ten years ago. They love their friendly neighborhood, multiple parks, and the hot live music all over all the time. Todd plays keyboards in the popular group, “Memphis Strange”.
Unfortunately, we got there a few days too late to hear them play the Mean-Eyed Cat.
Son, Oskar, is almost famous as member of the boy band, “Goo”. Seven-year-old Graham is an up and coming drummer and Mom has her own fitness business.
The Thompsons were kind enough to put us up and to introduce us to their community. You can feel the residents' sense of pride, feeling fortunate to live in this artsy and progressive city.
It's still got much of what the Grove has lost. Small businesses flourish, quirky is cool, people feel safe. Many leave their bicycles unlocked. Imagine that.
The Thompsons have their own indoor shuffleboard court
It’s “Texas strange” to think clowns like Rick Perry and Ted Cruz represent these folks but we can't brag about Rubio and our own Crazy Rick either.
We were told that repeatedly that Austin is a liberal oasis in the middle of a scary Trump lovin' state. If you drive out of town sportin’ a Hillary sticker, watch out. That’s basically the plot of the movie, “Texas Chainsaw Massarce”. In the 1972 blockbuster, young Austin hippies on a lark in the countryside meet “Leatherface”. He enjoys barbecuing the kind of people who voted for Hillary.
We stayed well within Austin city limits and encountered nothing but nice, people who would only think of using chainsaws to cut wood. After a brief visit to a belly dancing convention
we dined on “Masala Dasa”, South Indian crepes.
I got to see where my youngest son will be working. I was thrilled to see a ping pong table in the lobby and most folks wearing jeans and t-shirts to work. It’s apparently the IT dress code.
The next day Ian found the perfect place to live, an East Austin Japanese townhouse. The ad said, “Includes chicken coop. Free eggs”.
I’d advise everyone to move to Austin but I encountered many signs saying, “Please don’t screw it up. Don’t Move Here”. The population has doubled in the last twenty years. I think it will probably okay if only one more person, my young son, quietly slips into town.
He needs the eggs.
It’s a great city, filled with joy, innovation and wonder. If your child must fly away from the nest, it’s a good place to land.