Austin- music and heat

Trip Start Aug 11, 2009
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Flag of United States  , Texas
Saturday, August 15, 2009

15/08/09

Today we went to Austin, the live music capital of the world.

Getting out of Houston took some time because....you guessed it......it's huge. It also has massive highway interchanges which look like a pile of discarded electrical cables.....and at first glance they look about the same width as those cables. We drive in one side feeling like a child’s toy car on a Hot Wheels and after doing some somersaults and figure eights we get spat out the other side, somehow, on the right road. On our way to Austin we drove through La Grange. Yep, as in the song by ZZTop....a song I might add, that hasn’t left my head since driving through that town . The Texans are very proud of their music hero’s ie ZZ Top and Stevie Ray Vaughan

Austin is awesome. We drove in and went straight to a restaurant recommended by a friend of a friend......and which I strongly recommend....called the Hula Hut. It’s situated on a lake so we were able to watch people in their speed boats and the turtles swimming around below waiting for food to be thrown down to them. The food is excellent as well. I had a rack of ribs big enough to substitute the ones that surround my chest cavity. What really blew me away was another little bit of American magic, I say another because all over the states you will encounter great little touches like this that just make life that little bit easier.....in this case it was a little buzzer that was given to us when we arrived because there were no tables available immediately. The buzzer allowed us to go have a look around, grab a beer in the pub or pretty much do whatever we wanted and when our table became ready, they’d just buzz us....genius. Something else that’s genius is a Kolache it’s part hotdog, part sausage roll, part pie and all good.

That night we experienced the Austin nightlife. Once you get past the hyped up college boys it’s very cool with some very cool live bars. We did get to see a guitarist play that was by far the best live guitarist I have ever seen. He walked around the bar while he was playing using random peoples drink containers to make his guitar sing. He even served drinks while playing and climbed up onto the bar at one stage. His showman ship was outdone only by his incredible skill as an axe-man. No I do not remember his name.    

I would like to spend more time in Austin but I think coming back in Autumn might be better as we had to endure 44.5 degree temperatures. That is not a typo, 44.5 degrees, crazy hot. What’s crazier is that those temperatures are only achieved around 4 pm when you’d expect it to be cooling off. I won’t complain about the weather too much though because according to the weather people there are some tropical storms brewing further South where we plan to go next week.

Driving back today was also very interesting. We passed many "dead towns". They were probably once popular places that had been “killed” by the construction of ten lane highways and endless interstates which make it easy for people to just drive straight through to their destination without stopping in these little towns for fuel or food. They make great photographic material but ya wouldn’t want to live there.

There are a lot of guns in Texas and taxidermists, it’s frightening. Especially in the small towns, they have great names though. One that was particularly funny and equally disconcerting was Blast and Cast...Your One Stop Hunting and Fishing Shop. Another one was more to the point but no less deadly....GunWorld ! I guess you really have to laugh....but only if you’re travelling in a car at 70 miles an hour heading the hell outta there.

There are a few signs along the interstate that leave a lot to the imagination as well....my favourite and what I’ll end this instalment with has to be “ Bucky’s Beaver Nuggets”

Good Night Texas.
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