All About Austin: The Final Chapter
Rachel has done a great job telling you all about our time in Austin with our Australian friends, but I’m going to take over to tell you about the second half of our crazy adventure in our favorite city thus far.
It all started Friday night. We’d just said a sad farewell to our newest good friends, Taryn & Hope, and had set off into the horizon for a new Austin experience – because we just couldn’t get enough. For those of you who know and love Austin, you understand what I mean.
Pass me that Skrilla
We sat quietly in a Starbucks near Kati’s house while we waited for her to become available. Kati was our new CouchSurfing host for Austin, and we were to stay with her for three nights.
A couple hours in, and we got the phone call. “Meet you in 15!”
Little did we know that we were launching on one of our most fast paced weekends, ever.
We were greeted at the door by two sets of high pitched barking. One was a chihuahua named Chiquita, forever skeptical and doubtful of our good intentions. The other was an adorable little puppy. That puppy’s name was Skrilla. (Skrilla now lives in our car.)
BOOM! I just wanted to see if you were paying attention! Just kidding though, we left Skrilla with Kati because… well, stealing a dog would be a terrible thing to do.
Kati immediately swept us up into her car to go and meet her friends at a pretentious little place called Spider House.
“It’s basically a hipster bar. The waiters know they’re cooler than you and somehow get away with letting you know,” she warned us.
After an amazing display of parallel parking skills on a side street nearby, we finally met up with her friends.
That night became a blur of a night out. We were at Spider House just long enough for everyone to discuss a game plan for the night. There is a little place called Barbarella that charges cover after 10, so we went there first to get stamped.
Next came The Side Bar, where we taught a bartender how to make Rachel’s favorite drink: the AMF. I am fairly sure we indulged in a few more drinks as well, but it was a typical low-lit dive bar with moderately priced drinks and tables we could all sit and chat at.
Once everyone was ready to go out and dance, we made our way to Barbarella.
Oh – by the way, Kati had disappeared at that point. We searched all of The Side Bar, but no one had seen her and all her friends told us she’d gone to Barbarella already. We decided at least her friends would be able to get us in touch with her even if she wasn’t… so we followed them all over.
Barbarella was crowded and had dubious bathrooms. The line for drinks was insane, and by the time they helped Rachel they didn’t even bother to charge her since she waited so long.
At this point I’d been texting Kati to let her know we’d lost her, and we finally both discovered we were all at least somewhere in Barbarella. Kati sent me a location, so Rachel & I went over to find her. No Kati.
Long story short, we spent most of the night worried we’d get left in downtown Austin but about 5 minutes before everything was over, we finally found her again! PHEW!
Stevie. I can’t believe I forgot to tell you about Stevie.
So… way back at Spider House, a couple of guys joined us about halfway through our planning session. One guy was named Stevie and the other guy was Quinn.
Stevie is Kati’s love interest, but they were so sly about it at the beginning of the night that we made no connection between him and her stories in the car on the way over.
Lots of blurry details are in between, but soon after we found Kati in Barbarella the four of us were all trekking back to her car. About every 5 minutes Stevie would stop, reach over and give Kati a kiss. To diffuse the awkwardness of being gawking onlookers, Rachel and I promptly adopted the habit of yelling “LOVE BREAK!” and would dramatically shield our eyes or turn around. So… that was fun.
We all had alcohol munchies and made our first stop at Taco Cabana, where our orders were totally messed up and we paid twice what we should have. Ah, well.
Also, Stevie totally passed out in the car. While holding our food. We’re just thankful it didn’t fall out of the bag when he dropped it on the floor.
Once we got home, Kati was only able to get Stevie in the house by telling him “I got you tacos!”
And once he entered the door, he fell on the floor and went to sleep for the night. Something which confused him greatly when he woke up about 7 hours later.
Crazy days and crazy nights.
Next morning was kind of a slow, wake up when you can morning. It was also a very hungry kind of morning.
We’d been told by afore-blogged-about Page that you should never go to IHOP or Denny’s when you have a great breakfast place like Kerbey Lane around. With that in our heads when Kati mentioned that was an option… it was if the angels broke out in a glorious song, signaling that we should indeed go.
After indulging in a delicious Eggs Francisco and mimosas, coffee and water (triple cupping it), we all fell into a food coma. It’s possible we took naps after. I only say that because I’m not sure.
Next we visited Toy Joy, which was a hilarious and awesome place.
We also took a trip to Zilker Park, where we mostly watched Skrilla play and chase other dogs, all with a fantastic view of the downtown skyline.
Later that night we went to a bar called Lucy’s Retired Surfers and watched a band that Kati is friends with. They were entertaining, but when it was over everyone still wanted to go out and dance or something.
Check out this very short clip of the Sour Bridges performing:
Which is how we ended up at Malaia… a really bizarre place, to say the least. There was a single go-go dancer up on a very small balcony awkwardly jutting out of the wall way above our heads when we walked in. There was also a huge face in the wall behind the bar (like the whole height of the double-story wall) and for some reason I remember it was like picking its nose or something.
Kati kept telling us she had no idea why they had picked this place for us to go to and was profusely apologizing for the venue.
By the end of the night we ended up on the dance floor upstairs, which had no roof! And crazy dancing! It turned out to be pretty fun up there. Neither Rachel or I had much drink though, and we were ready for something else before too long. We jacked Kati’s car and drove recklessly around Austin picking up bums and hitchhikers who needed a ride before finally making it back home.
Okay, just kidding. We hadn’t had much to drink and were pretty tired, so we were ready for bed before too long. Kati let us head home in her car early. Ah, I know, we’re lame. But come on. We’re only good for about one night out in a row. We need our sleep!
Note: Rachel wanted to point out that we didn’t go home till like 2am, but apparently that’s an early night in Austin ;)
How crazy is Austin, do you say?
Imagine that you could wake up on a Sunday morning, grab some delicious Mexican food, and listen to some Christian Soul music and positive messages all before breakfast was over.
In Austin, that is totally possible. In fact, not only is it possible but we lived it! The guys up there singing are so fun and interactive that they even made Rachel sing their version of “This Little Light of Mine” with them into the microphone.
Guy with the microphone: “Do you know the song?”
Guy with the microphone: “I can tell you know this song!”
Guy with the microphone: “Alright I’ll sing it with you! Ready? GO!”
(Just so you know, Rachel totally rocked it.)
For future reference, they called it Hippie Church.
Moving on to the afternoon…
Imagine the funniest chicken related game you can think of. Add a pinch of Texas thinkin’, two shakes of hilarious and a dash of Austin and you have what they call Chicken S#!T Bingo.
Here’s how to play:
You take a little cage and make a grid of numbers on it.
Then you take some chicken food and spread it all over.
Then you sell tickets, 1 per square representing each section of the grid. $2 per ticket, 1 ticket per person.
Then you put a chicken in the cage.
Wherever the chicken decides to take its next bathroom break dictates the winner of about $100+ …so basically it’s like the weirdest raffle ever.
Unfortunately neither Rachel or I won, but it was still pretty awesome. Also, they had dollar Lone Stars and free chili dogs, so for about $4 we got lunch, beers and played the game. Not a bad way to spend a quirky Sunday afternoon in Austin!
The rest of the day was more low-key, and we spent a brief amount of time watching the Oscars at a home based Oscar party. It made me realize how few movies I saw over the last year.
Leaving the city I loved…
It turned out our time in Austin was to end only too soon. It was time to move on and see other less-awesome cities. It was time to fight the soul sucking we were told we’d find in Houston.
The battle must wage on.
We slept in on Monday so that we could say goodbye to Kati during her lunch break. She was super awesome and brought us home a big box so we could ship things back home.
Once Kati was gone, we spent about a half hour in the back of our car picking and choosing what should go home. Then we made a grocery store trip to Whole Foods, and a stop at the UPS store to ship our box home. By the way, on our way in I guessed “This will cost about $30 to ship” and it totally did. Nailed it.
And with that, we turned our route Eastward. The word Eastward kind of looks like the word Edward, which makes me think of Twilight. Blech. There are just too many sad things about leaving Austin.
Well… Over and out.