I like to think I’m a little quirky, dress a little differently and wotnot. But in Austin, I felt pretty normal and, shock horror, conservative. Austin stood out because of its eccentricities, and very proud of them the Austin folk are.
Austin felt like a city in complete contrast to much of Maryland, because (and apologies to my Maryland friends, but I think of you as fairly conservative in the way you dress – with the exception of a few kooky folk out there) there was not really a suit to be seen. Austin is a fascinating place to people watch – my favourite by far being the 20-something dude who sauntered round the corner with a wooden stake through his nose, a mass of dreads on his head tied together by lace panties, a polka dot bow tie and a striped candy cane walking stick. That, folks, is Austin. Weird. In a good way.
Yep, Austin thrives on being cultural and quirky – in fact, its slogan is this:
And wonderfully weird it was. 6th Street is like the super weird place, with super weird bars and music places and graffiti. It was like you’d hope Glastonbury town to be (which it isn’t, believe me, because there are too many Icelands and Greggs the bakers plaguing the high street).
And there were no cowboys in sight!
Anyway, this is what I liked about weird Austin:
Alternative Art Show
Weird Moment 1: We were watching a lady in a leopard print costume and tail twirling her hoola-hoop outside an art studio and got summoned in for free drinks and tapas and to participate in art. And so we did. Harry happily painted himself and stuck his hand print all over a piece of public art – yes, they did encourage it, but even Austin wouldn’t have handled his other request for painting bodily parts……
This was a modern, alternative, quirky art show Austin-style, made even more quirky and weird by the dancing lady gyrating in chains and leather in the studio, looking like an extra from Game of Thrones.
Whilst I jest, it was all pretty amazeballs and very, very cool. Again, I felt like I had on far too many clothes, not enough tattoos and needed to express myself in someway through the medium of art, fashion or music. But I drank the free wine instead.
And then there’s the bats under the bridge. That’s pretty weird and cool too, as they all fly out at sunset. Spooky.
Finally, I can confirm that things in Texas are bigger. Like the hail – effing massive! One brief hailstorm brought down hail the size of eggs falling out of the sky – I’m not kidding! Those buggers would knock you out in seconds! Ginormous, they were!