Day 4 – Austin (Tuesday, August 6th)

NOTE to readers – SCROLL TO THE BOTTOM (if you are on the main blog 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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After managing to actually get a decent night of sleep (FINALLY!), I decided to stay in “bed” after New Yorker and Guy went to work. I got some writing done in the morning before heading out for a day of adventures. Someone had recommended going to Mount Bonnell  to get a great view of the city so off I went. Mount Bonnell is one of Austin’s oldest tourist attractions and is the highest point in the city at 775 feet. It had gorgeous views of the Colorado River and Austin skyline. I went for a brief walk, snapped some photos, counted my blessings then headed back to the car.

I was still in a bit of a daze as a result of the emotional day I had yesterday so I figured a bit of coffee would do my soul some good. I found a coffee shop and sat on the patio to write some more. I went inside to order (holding LaRoo of course) and was scolded for bringing her inside. OPPPPSIE. My bad. I totally understand health codes and whatnot but don’t you understand my dog doesn’t like to be tied up lady? 😉

I asked New Yorker if it was ok to leave LaRoo at their place so I could get some non-dog friendly sightseeing done. Once I had the go ahead I headed towards the Texas State Capital building. Now…being the type of person who likes to be outdoors, I am sometimes challenged by museums/indoor attractions – I love to read and learn but given my memory kind of sucks I figure I’m not going to remember the facts anyway so it’s difficult for me to really invest my time and attention in museums. The architecture of the capital building is amazing so I grabbed a self-guided tour brochure and made my way through in 30 minutes.

Next I headed over to the Texas State Cemetery. I read somewhere that the grounds are nice and once I mapped it I realized it was super close to the Capital building. I drove into the cemetery and looked around. Apparently the dude who founded/created/formed Texas is buried there along with a slew of other famous government type people. I so completely fail at history so I found tombstones I thought were pretty and took some pictures while LaRoo waited in the air conditioned car.

Pulling out of the cemetery there was this house that was  super creeptastic looking that faces the entry/exit. All the other houses on the block are decent looking but I thought it so fitting that the one closest to the cemetery looks wicked haunted and decrepit. I actually took a picture of it – I have this “thing” with falling down and burnt houses because I’m weird like that.

The next stop on my tour de Austin was South Congress street. There are a ton of cute shops and places to grab a bite to eat. Street parking on some streets is back in angled parking only. Having minimal visibility because of the crap in the back of my car I did a FANTASTIC job of backing my car up. NOT. I’m just glad I didn’t hit anything!

I walked into this organic health and food store and bought kambucha which is a naturally fermented tea. I love trying out new things and the cold, bubbly tartness of the drink was delightful as I sweated my tush off walking in and out of shops. I found my one and only Austin souvenir which is a plain, gold, square ring. I’m not one to buy trinkets as I’m trying to simply my life – not add more useless junk in it. But for $6 I could manage this delicate ring. The other small gold knot ring I wear I bought in San Francisco so I thought perhaps rings could by my “thing” to find when I travel.

When I was driving with New Yorker the night before he had pointed out a pizza place and said it was the best pizza in Austin. I figured I would have to find out for myself so I walked in and ordered a slice of margarita. A guy my age sat at the stool next to me and within a few minutes started a conversation. Most of these convos always start with “Where are you from?” I asked him for some suggestions of things to do and he mentioned that Blues on the Green in Zilker Park was having their last concert the next night and that I should definitely stay for it. He also invited me to join their group if I stuck around. We exchanged numbers and I was out the door and wandered into a hat shop a few doors down.

I have been considering purchasing a new fedora given I’ve sweated in my current one and it just looks gross. BUT – with my head being the size of a small country I often find it difficult to find hats that fit. And naturally the style of hat I liked in this store only carried smaller sizes. Hats are amazing for the traveling lifestyle. No shower? NO PROBLEM – hat it! Bad hair day? NO PROBLEM – hat it! When you are on the run and traveling I have come to find a hat is a must. Who cares if all your Facebook pics have you in the same hat! Travel is about fun and adventure – not necessarily looking super cute all the time!

After wandering a bit more I was back at my car and headed over to Rainey Street. This area is in the process of getting remodeled. Run down houses are being renovated and turned into cool bars! I found the concept super neat and the neighborhood quirky and inspirational to any city that needs some overhauling. Given the time of day (around 5pm), the street was quiet but I found a place and went in. I was the only person in the place (Clive Bar) but the bartender and I started chatting and I found out he was from LA! He moved to Austin 5-8 years ago (totally forget at this point) but he LOVES it.

I decided to start heading back to the boys apartment since I knew they were going to be home from work and didn’t want them to have to deal with LaRoo. New Yorker was already home and I believe Guy was on a date or entertaining a lady upstairs. I had considered going to see live music but once I decided I was staying for Blues on the Green I thought it would be a good night to just relax and New Yorker was on the same page. He walked across the street to get some snacks and we put on a show while I was writing a blog post.

Not too long after, New Yorker fell asleep and I continued to tap away at my key board. I started to hear a bit of movement from upstairs and couldn’t really figure it out. I continued writing until the noise started to get a bit louder. It sounded liked someone moving furniture until I heard a SMACK. Nope nope nope.. . definitely not redecorating up there! That was some skin on skin action… Guy was getting it in with his new lady friend!!! LoL. I started giggling when I heard a second loud smack and looked over at New Yorker – I wanted someone else to witness this moment too! He was out for the count so I turned back to my writing thinking THIS will make for a good blog post! haha.

A few moments later I saw some movement over by the T.V. cabinet… like something crawling. All the lights were off and there was just a soft glow of the T.V. screen which was frozen on a Netflix screen. I grabbed my IPhone and used the handy dandy flashlight app to see what the heck was over there. HOLY MOTHER OF BUGS!!!!! There was a large cock roach looking thing far back underneath the console. WTF!! Now I am usually no wimpy pants when it comes to bugs and taking care of business but this thing was from another planet!

Now a note about the boys apartment – they have a nice place that is kept clean, decorated tastefully, and actually not too bad for a bachelor pad. They do leave the back patio door open slightly for the dog so I’m assuming that is how this beast found its way in!

I sat there and was like OH SHIT what do I do? I figured since I was across the room and elevated I was safe. So I turned off the flashlight and pretended the bug was not there…. UNTIL…

I heard some scratching on the cardboard box next to me (like a shoe box). It was about 2 feet from me but given it was dark I couldn’t totally see BUT I did see a big black blob and instantly knew it was beast #2. I got the flashlight back on just in time to see that sucker crawl under the futon couch thingy I was on. NOW it was two against one. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. I’ll gladly take the sex sounds coming from upstairs over bugs scratching ANYDAY!

I’m usually all about peace and love with bugs and try to humanely catch them and set them free. But these weren’t just any bugs. I swear they had super powers. The one near the T.V. was making its way out so I grabbed New Yorkers shoe and smacked it!!! It ended up on its backs with is spiney legs twitching in the air. I let out a yelp and ran across the room like a big time sissy.

The fuss woke New Yorker up and he asked “What’s wrong?” – I told him there was a huge bug to which he responded by turning and placing a pillow over his head and went back to sleep. DAMNIT! I was alone of this bug mission.

I grabbed a paper towel and before I knew it I was face to face with this gross ass looking thing. I got about 6 inches away and totally wimped out, threw the towel on the ground, and ran across the room waking New Yorker up in the process. At this point New Yorker wasn’t very pleased with me having woken him up out of slumber land. He grumpily asked me what the hell my problem was and I pointed and said THAT BUG.

He grabbed the shoe, opened the front door, and brushed the bug out. PHEW!!! I felt a slight twinge of relief until I remember there was still bug #2 under the futon.  Before I could even address this with New Yorker he was climbing the stairs to head to bed.  NOOOOOOOOOOO now I’m all alone with bug #2. I didn’t even want to try to search for it so I moved my stuff over to the sectional couch, turned one a light (as I figured it might deter bug #2 from coming out) and did my best to forget about it and go to sleep.

Here is to sleeping with one eye open…

At least I had both dogs sandwiching me as I feel asleep. They will protect me. Right?


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