Hello from San Francisco

Hello dear Austin-ites (Austin-ers? Austinians?)! My name is Nicole Lee, and I’ll be one of your guest bloggers for the next few days, thanks to my presence at SXSW. I’m a writer for the San Francisco Metblog when I’m not traveling about elsewhere.

Not only is this my first time in Austin, it’s also my first time in Texas. Not only that, but the last time I visited another state was about four years ago. And of course, it’s also my first year at SXSW. This trip has been momentous in more ways than one.

I have to say that the first few impressions I’ve had of Austin leads me to believe that this is one helluva college town. I have never seen this many pubs, bars, pizzerias, burger joints, all together in just a few blocks. Just last night, we went on a serious bar crawl from one spot to another, where the cops shut down an entire couple of blocks or so. First we went to a place called Buffalo Grill or something (I can’t recall), then we went to the Chuggy Monkey, and then we went to Paradise Lounge. The difference of the neighborhood during night and day, was seriously like… night and day. Daytime, it’s quiet and kinda slow. Nighttime, it’s like a swarm of party-goers have descended upon the city.

What I enjoyed the most about the Chuggin Monkey was the balcony/patio at the back. We were actually able to speak and make conversation without shouting at each other. It also helps that the skies were clear and the night looked beautiful. There was also much debauchery involved, as these SXSW flickr tags show. I’ll also probably cross-post some of my stuff in the Austin Metblog Flickr group.

Few additional notes about Austin:

  • The tall buildings in Austin are all kinda geometric. Triangular, pyramid-shapes, etc. Or maybe I’m imagining things.
  • The weather here is driving me crazy. All hot and humid in the morning, and all cold and windy in the evening. We had to do an emergency extra-jacket pickup today because it got way cold all of a sudden
  • The lake/river is absolutely gorgeous in the daytime. Shimmery and beautiful. Kinda gunky though, when looked up close.
  • There are some really loud birds here. Like really loud. Like Hitchcock’s Birds loud. I hear they’re called Brackles or something like that. It’s kinda freaky how they fly about and caw like that, as if they were to attack you at any second.

I’ll probably write more about my impressions as soon as I have more time and better WiFi. Any more tips on Austin food and drink will be much appreciated.

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