Texas is hot y’all. We expected it to be hot no doubt, but when it was +34 with humidity, it was hard to do anything but drink beers and eat salty food.
The six of us had rented a house, affectionately dubbed “the casita” by the owner. It was the perfect digs, close to South Congress, a main drag with food, bars and shopping in Austin.
The house had a little backyard, but it felt natural to bring the chairs on the drive in front of the shed. Also, there was talk of scorpions in the backyard, but I’m pretty sure that was all propaganda.
Feelin the burn.
As an aside, apparently there was a possum living in the shed too. We didn’t see him, but the owner informed us that “that was the smell”.
We scored some bike rentals to get us down to the festival grounds for Austin City Limits, which was about 2 miles away. The festival itself was 3 days with such highlights as The Cure, Muse, The National, Junip, Depeche Mode, Grimes, and the incomparable (for some) Lionel Richie. He’s really just a vegas schmoozer who talks about what song of his to listen to when “you catch yo girl with yo best friend”. Pretty sexy stuff. During the days there was a big, covered but open to the air barn building, showing what else, but football. It was a pretty nice way to score some shade and yell if you felt like it.
The inevitable yogis at every festival…and beefy texas zach in the background
We all kind of agreed that if we came back to Austin, we’d buy tickets to the aftershows, instead of the festival, to have the opportunity to see specific artists more up close and personal. And to get a chance to see more of Austin.
We took a little roadie to see Hamilton Pool one day, a 40 minute drive west of Austin. It’s a jade green pool with a small waterfall in the heart of the texas desert; created when the dome of an underground river collapsed from massive erosion. When we got there though we were greeted with sad news, the pool was closed for swimming. Sad emoticon here.
Hamilton pool – full of e-coli bacteria, or as Ned put it, “too much poopy”. No swimming. Just looking.
Luckily the man at the gate of the pool told us where we could go for a swim nearby, so back into the bus we filed and this is where we ended up.
Value Village Swimsuit Edition
Now the trip wouldn’t have felt complete had we not done a couple of key things, repeatedly.
#1. Ate massive amounts of food – and actually this is one of the things I noticed that I missed most about Bec, her sound effects when she eats. It made me feel like no time had passed since they started their trip. Anyways, back to the food :) Here are some pics outlining some of the highlights; authentic truck tacos (papas y chorizo), homemade flatbread pizza (our late night go-to) and BBQ.
Texas BBQ: The boys were worried we hadn’t ordered enough until they heard us say, “and a full rack of ribs please”.
And #2. Tied one on. The nightlife in Austin seems pretty great, with lots of live music and open-air bars (all year patio season) and TONS of karaoke, especially down on 6th Street. So much in fact that we could be kind of choosey as to where we went.
Shania Twain anyone
I don’t remember what song this was, but you should have seen the other pictures of them singing … It got more intense
I wish I had a better way of saying this, but I don’t so here goes. Mark and Bec are kind of remarkable. Every time I see them they never fail to remind me that life is short and you just gotta giver’ til you can’t give no more. I’m pretty sure that’s Texas’s state motto too. But seriously, there was one wall in Austin that I had to get a picture of, and I think it says it all. For me, and all of us back in the great white north.