Jeremy had to work from home Thursday morning and Jon slept most of the morning so I played with Bob the Cat a little and enjoyed the occasional chatting with my oldest. When Jon got up and Jeremy was finished with work we went to Chuy's, an Austin tradition, for lunch. Jeremy had told me he wasn't a huge fan of the place, partially because it's always crowded and the wait is very long, but we got there at the right time of day, apparently. We were seated immediately and had our food within 20 minutes. The food, by the way, was excellent! I had the Stuffed Avocado, something I'd never even heard of, and though it was too rich to eat often, it sure was tasty! The appearance of it was a little odd - it looks kind of like a demented Easter egg. I got a picture of it with my Blackberry but can't find it now. Grrr! It looks like this, though. After lunch, we drove over to South Congress Street and walked around, looking at some funky little shops and enjoying the beautiful weather. One of the best shops was Uncommon Objects and it's chock full of just that, uncommon objects. Truly, it's part antique shop, part junk shop and part something out of "Needful Things".
Friday night we went to Sixth Street, the famous strip of bars, clubs, and music joints. When we got there, some of the street had barricades and my sons explained to me that the street is blocked off weekend nights. There were a few people milling in the street but it was pretty quiet and not at all what I expected. As we walked down the street we passed what I thought was a statue of The Grim Reaper. I slowed to look a little more closely and it moved! Ahhh, a street performer it was, not a statue! Whoever was inside the black shroud did a great job of portraying the ol' reaper and I couldn't help but giggle over the creepiness so Jon got a picture of me with the reaper.
We went to a bar called Nuno's on Sixth because Pinetop Perkins, who is 96 years old and one of the last great Mississippi bluesmen, hangs out there and my sons know I'm a rabid, errr avid, blues fan. We got there and Pinetop was sitting in with Travis Green and The Late Bloomers, one of Austin's newest and most promising bands, playing his keyboard and singing. Oh man, I haven't heard live blues like that before and I was enthralled! So were the rest of the folks in the bar, apparently, because there wasn't a seat to be found so we just stood by the bar and enjoyed the great music of Mr. Perkins, Mr. Green, and company. It was definitely worth much more than the $3 cover charge Nuno's charges! While we were there, the great Alan Haynes wandered in and it seemed like old home week there at Nuno's. Unfortunately, Alan didn't play and didn't stay long but I had hope!
After a couple of hours of that we headed back into the street. It was pretty late, about 1 AM, and the fairly quiet Sixth Street I'd seen earlier was gone! There were young people walking in the streets, some sober and a lot of them not so sober. The police were out and about, a few striding through the street, some riding their horses, watching carefully and "escorting" folks (usually handcuffed) to the paddy wagon as necessary. Apparently, a person can be slobbering drunk down there but as long as said drunk person has a sober person there to keep an eye on him/her an arrest isn't made. However, if you're drunk and alone, watch out! Austin Texas Police, bless you! I wouldn't want your job but I'm so glad you're there to do it.
We stopped for a treat at The Best Wurst, a street vendor, for the best all beef bratwurst I've ever had. I wanted to get a picture of the lovely dog, kraut, and bun with spicy mustard but I wolfed it down.
However, Jon did get a shot of me standing by one of the police horses, bratwurst in hand. Yeah, I'm terrified of horses so I had to make myself stand next to this beast! The policeman was very nice about the picture and the horse was pretty tolerant, too, though he did try to steal my snack! I lived in Germany for a few years in the 80s and have had my share of brats but none like this. Seriously, if you ever get to Austin and are a brat fan, go to The Best Wurst and try their fare.
That's enough for this entry...more to come later!