Sunday, April 17, 2011

Weird Weekend

The first weird thing about this weekend is the lack of blog traffic.  I admit it, I check to see how many visitors I have on a regular basis.  Where has everyone gone?  Did everyone give my blog up for Lent? Not even a "next blog" cruiser this weekend.  It is a conspiracy.  I am trying not to take this personally but am completely baffled, I think my blog has evaporated into thin air in the blogsphere.  Don't tell me everyone is out enjoying their own lives and just don't have time to spend on the computer reading my attempt to write something curiously enjoyable.  I am not buying it!  Maybe my stat counter is broken, is anybody there?

Austin, TX

The slogan says, "Keep Austin Weird".  I had the pleasure of going to Austin this weekend and did my best to enjoy the weirdness that is Austin.   Daughter #2 accompanied me on this trip.  We were on a mission to pick up my husband after he finished the MS150.  A two day bike ride from Houston to Austin to raise money for MS.  This is his 5th time to finish this ride and he really loves all 180 miles....why?  I have no idea, maybe it is spending 2 days on a bike, maybe it is sleeping outside under a huge tent with hundreds of other people, maybe it is using portable toilets for 2 days, maybe it is all the conditioning it takes to be able to finish in one piece or maybe it is one way he can do a little good and get a lot of exercise.  My contribution is minimal,  my job is to show up on Sunday afternoon and drive what is left of him back to Houston.  After a couple of years of driving to Austin and back on Sunday I got smart and decided to go to Austin on Saturday, spend the night and enjoy the city and be well rested on Sunday for my drive back to Houston.

TJ at the finish line!

Finish line with a view of the state Capital

While TJ was outside at the halfway point on Saturday night at the world's biggest campout, enjoying a few beers and sleeping on a cot, freezing his tushie off (yes, it was a bit chilly at night this year), daughter #2 and I were exploring Austin.  Our first order of business was to trek a mile and a half, uphill, to a yarn shop.  I don't knit, but my daughter does, so I humored her and hiked up to the shop.  It was only 17 blocks!  I noticed on our walk that Austin is a young city.  Must be that little school they have there, University of Texas.  I felt like I upped the average age everywhere we went by a factor of at least 2.  The other observation was that there are more tatoos per capita than any other place I've ever been!  I felt so out of pure and unadorned... uninked.  Weird. 

Austin is a great city!  So many great places to shop, eat, drink and listen to music and it is pedestrian friendly.  It also just so happened to be one of the most beautiful days of the year on Saturday!  Chamber of Commerce weather.  After our walk uphill, we were parched.  We made the rest of the evening and night our own personal progressive dinner.  We had appetizer and drinks at one place, dinner at another, after-dinner drinks at another place and finally the cheese course and more wine at another place.  It was a great night.  It is so nice to have grown children to go out with and have interesting conversations with while exploring new places!  At least I had fun, hopefully daughter #2 was having fun too.  What do you think?

wine tasting at Cru

It was nice to visit a city that has a vibrant and interesting downtown.  Houston is not one of those cities.  Austin is!  So for the low price of FREE, I encourage everyone to visit Austin if you are looking for a weird and wonderful weekend.  Austin can thank me next year when I go back to pick up what is left of TJ after next year's MS150!

As an aside, Texas is in the middle of a severe drought.  Usually our drive to Austin is blessed with fields of bluebonnets.  This year the fields were all brown.  There are wildfires all over the state.  TJ said that the dust was so bad at the halfway stop that they all felt like their noses were full of dust.  I truly enjoy dry weather, not a big fan of humidity but even I have to admit that we need some rain.  I snapped this photo with my phone last week on a bike ride.  Usually this lake is full to the grass but if you notice all the exposed dirt, we are very low on water!  Let it rain!


Carol said...

Ugh! 1) I wish I had known you were in Austin - I am 3 hours away and AVAILABLE 2) I wish Michael O had known you were in Austin. He is 3 minutes away (Jester, East, on campus) and AVAILABLE!
We need to coordinate better next year.
And, I promise more feedback on blogs. Do I count?

Lisa said...

Carol, thanks for stopping by! YES, you count! Thought about contacting Michael but did not think he would enjoy the yarn store...he might have enjoyed the spectacle of the MS150 though. Next year.

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