El Paso to Austin

NOTE to readers – SCROLL TO THE BOTTOM of the page and work your way up if you are the type of person that likes chronological order. The first post is “The Backstory”. ALSO –forgive any grammar, spelling, or whatever other writing mistakes you will find in my posts. Yes I love to use dashes and dots – I write how I would speak! Since I am writing from the road my first focus is enjoying the sights and trying to record them as best I can. Therefore, in regards to proof reading  – Ain’t nobody got time fo dat!

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I wish I could report that I woke up feeling rested and relaxed in my hotel bed but that was not the case. I definitely got a better nights rest than the first night in the car… but LaRoo decided to be an itchy pants all night. After moving to Huntington Beach in 2010 she started developing allergies every Spring into Summer. I took her to the vet and hundreds of dollars later was told she had “environmental allergies”. I tried changing up her food and giving her benedryl but every spring I dreaded the day that she would start itching. The best remedy I discovered was putting her in a doggy hoodie — just an FYI for all you dog owners out there!

Anywho – LaRoo itched her way all through the night…waking me up in the process. I grabbed some hotel coffee upon waking (hey its free… take advantage!) and embarked on my journey to Austin. A whopping 577 mile trip!!! Depending on traffic and pit stops about a 9 hour journey. I got on around 10am and was on my way.

Once on route 10 I noticed I had a quarter tank of gas so decided to pull off in some podunk town to fill up. The station right off the freeway was busy so I followed a sign to a station on the other side of the freeway. Now a word about this town… it looked run down as hell and I think all of 10 people lived there. I filled up and turned back for the freeway.

I approached a stop sign where I would be making a left turn. There was a little island and it was unclear to either stay straight or veer left (into about 5 feet of road) to turn left. I decided to take the 5 feet route and THEN noticed a DO NOT ENTER sign. Whopppppps (my ability to pay attention to signs apparently REALLY sucks on this trip haha).

No big deal given I was the only car on the road but then I looked to my right and AHHH police. I started driving and saw him pull out. DAMIT. I knew I was going to get pulled over but I also knew I wasn’t going to get a ticket given it was an honest mistake that didn’t effect anyone else.

The officer creeped up to the back of my car and waved at me in the side view mirror asking me to step out. I handed him my info and we chatted. I said “Obviously I’m not from here.” He claimed that if another car had been coming it would have been dangerous and so on and so forth. Ok ok ok I get it dude. My information was blasting over the intercom as we talked and then the officer walked around and inspected my car, asking me to “stay away from the vehicle mam”.

LaRoo was like WTF is this all about and started barking at the dude as he went to pet her. I was like HOLY SHIT don’t let this be the ONE time she bites someone!! He got away unscathed but then noticed my old Pennsylvania registration on the windshield from 2010. He asked me what that was about and I said I bought the car in PA so it used to be registered there. He said “Well it’s expired you might want to get that taken care of.”

Ummmm my car has a CURRENT registration in Cali you fool because that is where I lived. Last time I checked you don’t need dual registration on cars. Silly, silly officer.

He printed me up my warning, told me to “pay better attention to signs” (which I probably needed at this point of the trip – *see previous posts*), and I was on my way.

The next 9 hours were nothing but DRIVING, eating sunflower seeds, listening to one of Robert Kiyosaki’s (Rich Dad Poor Dad) cd’s, and chatting on the phone with anyone who would pick up.

LaRoo started getting super antsy so I gave her a handy dandy jar of peanut butter and let her lick away. She was happy… not annoying me anymore… problem SOLVED!

Along this journey there was NOTHING to see aside from wide open fields. I stopped to pee and that was about it.

The Austin skyline came into sight around 7pm and I was ecstatic to say the least!

Yipee I made it! The first thing I did was text someone who I was connected with in Austin (actually went to high school with but we didn’t know each other!) to ask where I should go for a beer (well earned after that freaking drive). He suggested The White Horse on East 6th and within minutes I had beer in hand. I ordered a Bud Lite – really? That’s the best I could think of. Why not a local beer? DUUUH – I had road brain after all that driving. Beer was beer to me at that point.  At least I decided to go “fancy” and get a lime with it (my makeshift version of Bud Lite Lime <– which I happen to think is freaking delicious).

In regards to where I was staying I wasn’t 100% sure that the dude I went to high school with could host me. He had just moved and wasn’t sure the situation with his new roommate. I decided to not  stress about it and just get a hotel room for the first night. Motel 6 here I come!

Let the fun in Austin begin…

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