Posts Tagged Austin

Naked in the Desert

Posted on July 30, 2014 by 3 Comments

Driving on 50, you know what you’re going to get. Open roads and small desert towns left to crumble. The dust devils are continuous roadside attractions and provided us a little bit of excitement when we literally drove through one with the windows down. Just a little extra dust in the bus.

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Our destination for the night was a well known boondock spot on BLM land approximately in the middle of nowhere – Spencer Hot Springs. About 10 miles down a dirt road outside of Austin, Nevada. You know you’re getting close when you start seeing naked people peeking out of their RV’s. We weren’t aware of this little feature, but made sure to note the new rule of thumb : desert + hot springs + middle of nowhere = naked time.

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There were maybe 10 other campers scattered about a total of 4 ‘pools’. The pools are just steel cattle troughs with spring water diverted to them. We drove right past the first one solely due to the vision of the gentlemen airing out next to it. We made our way towards the back and stopped to chat with a robed Canadian guy sitting next to his truck with BC plates. He’d been there a month. He gave us the low-down and showed us the ‘best’ pool. But, he warned, it was being monopolized by 4 ‘pit-bull’ ladies who had been camping next to it for the past 2 months. “Where’s the hot springs etiquette?” he pleaded.

Unafraid of the pitbulls, we pulled up to the tub, popped the top and jumped in. Within a few minutes, here comes our buddy, giddy at the chance to finally use the best tub. I will say this – a small cattle trough in the middle of nowhere is no place to share a soak with an old rotund naked guy prone to float. He was a polite conversationalist, though. Still not sure about the hot springs etiquette.

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Later, Bode and I took a night-time dip and stared at the stars in silence. Two military jets flew overhead in formation, then circled over us a few times before jetting off into the distance. We soaked in silence a bit longer until Bode simply volunteered, “I’m happy.”  The first time any of us has uttered the phrase in longer than I’d like to admit. It’s good to be back on the road.

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Filed Under: Nevada

On the Road Again…

Posted on November 25, 2013 by 2 Comments

It’s exactly 1000 miles from Austin to Winter Park.

We had grand plans of leaving at 6 AM, but that didn’t quite work out. Bode sat up in bed at 3 AM, said “uh, oh” and then vomited all over our friend Trisha’s nice guestroom bed. Oops.

So, the day started with a load of laundry at 3 AM. Then, back to bed and we slept a while and made sure everyone was road-worthy. We left around 9. Then, pulled over every 30 minutes when Bode said he felt like he might be sick. He never did get sick again, and was back to normal by the afternoon.

We slowly made up way north thorough towns like Lampasas, Golthwaite, Comanche, Rising Star, Abeline, Sweetwater, Justiceburg. You know, all the biggies. The bus continued to run like a champ and we drove all day. We pulled up to camp at Buffalo Springs Lake, outside of Lubbock,  just before sunset. It’s good to be back in the bus.

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Filed Under: Texas

Austin Weekend

Posted on November 24, 2013 by 6 Comments

The drive from Houston to Austin was a nice warm-up. The bus ran great and we got to hang out with more friends and family. As always, it was way too short of a visit.

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Filed Under: Texas

Travis County

Posted on November 8, 2011 by 5 Comments

And happy birthday to Angela.


Filed Under: Texas

Montgomery County

Posted on November 3, 2011 by 1 Comment

We’re taking a little break from the South American traveling, but loading up on Texas traveling. Our trademarked family loop around Texas begins….


And, if anyone around Austin wants to meet up for a cold Lone Star, we’ll be there Thursday and Friday. Look for us somewhere on S. Congress for First Thursday, or come have  a margarita under the oak trees at Freddie’s Place on Friday 5:30-8:30. See you there!

Houston folks – come meet us for a cold one at the West Alabama Ice House at 5 o’clock on Sunday!

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Filed Under: Texas

Farewell Austin

Posted on December 22, 2009 by 3 Comments

We spent nearly a week in Austin visiting friends and just hanging out. Austin is and always will be the funkiest town in Texas. When we lived here years ago, folks said Austin just wasn’t like it used to be. Now we go back and say it’s not like it used to be. But, it’s still pretty great.

Austin is the original Slacker town. It’s the best place in America to do nothing.

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We hit some of our favorite old haunts, including Hut’s Hamburgers where we once spent every Wednesday for their 2-for-1 specials. After dinner, we invited some friends back to our place… it was parked right outside!

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A few new trends we noticed in Austin:

You’re not cool unless you eat out of an Airstream trailer. They’re everywhere. There are even shopping trailer parks with Airstreams huddled around picnic tables and a fire pit. You can get anything. Crepes, cupcakes, even a pet store.

Skeeball is apparently back with a vengeance. My cousin Rachel is a defending city champ and will go to New York for the nationals.  She’s got a machine in the garage to practice. Who knew?

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Oh yeah, and join a band. Everybody’s in a band. Or five. Come down for SXSW and never leave – it happens. You don’t really have to join a band – just have friends in bands and hang out with them and act like you’re in a band.

Seriously, it really is the best place we know of anywhere in world for live music. Great musicians everywhere. I’ve bumped into Alejandro Escovedo getting coffee. Years ago I was in line at the grocery store behind a very pregnant Shawn Colvin eating cheesy poofs out of the bag while the checker was scanning them. Yeah, that’s us in the front row on the Austin City Limits episode with Son Volt (don’t blink or you’ll miss us.)  We went to a birthdays party last week for a 10 year old and (I think) David Rawlings was there – it’s just that kind of town.

Live music everywhere, killer Tex-Mex, cool fun creative interesting people all over town.  Show up… do nothing… you’ll have a blast. Just don’t move here.


Filed Under: Texas

On the Road Again

Posted on December 11, 2009 by 8 Comments

We stopped for lunch in Giddings, about half-way between Spring and Austin and Jason checked the engine. The van had been running great since we visited Mark in Virgina, but seemed to be having a bit of trouble since we got to Texas.

There wasn’t anything noticeably wrong, so he decided to get to Austin where he’d tune it up. Just as he’s about to pull back onto the highway, his foot went all the way to the floor. The accelerator cable had broken. Lucky for us, he carries a spare. It was raining and muddy, but at least we were in a parking lot instead of the side of the road. Within a half an hour we were back on our way… and Bode got to experience the wonder of Whataburger.

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Barely 15 minutes into Austin, our old hometown, a guy in a pickup truck passes us and yells expletives with ‘Go back to California!’ Ah, good times.

Jason and I each lived in Austin for 10 years before we moved to California. We have lots of friends and family here, so we always have fun when we visit.

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It was still raining, so we made a quick trip around our old neighborhood before heading over to pick up our friend Mear and go see the Judd family. Hootie entertained Bode, and we got to catch up with some great friends.

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Filed Under: Texas