I went back to Austin for TXLA and was pleased to get to eat at a ton of places that were terrific without the usual lines that sort of plague everything during SXSW. My write-up of the actual conference is over on librarian.net. Since most of what I did in Austin this time was eating, sleeping, or attending TXLA, I’ll cover all bases.
The sleeping part is simple. I stayed here, a very nice AirBnB place that was everything I could have wanted, except possibly not being a treehouse. Nice price, great location, well furnished, terrific. Having my own little apartment made it easier to manage my own schedule without having to put a Do Not Disturb sign on my door or get dressed to go have coffee. And the food, wow. We lost our only “Mexican” place here in town; it’s been replaced by a decent coffee shop so I can’t say I’m too disappointed, but I do hanker for guacamole and beans and rice, pretty much constantly.
I think the preponderance of food photos and food talk and food twittering online is often a way of letting people know both 1) I like food, I am a person of decent appetites and also 2) I am taking care of myself. See? Food! I feel self-conscious talking about food much since it’s always the cliche “I don’t care what you had for breakfast” response to people who like twitter/facebook/social media. But whatever. You might care what I had for breakfast. And if not, we are still internet-friends, or real ones.
- Sunday I drove/bused down to MA. I think I had cereal for dinner, maybe an apple.
- Monday was travel day. I had a bagel with cream cheese at Dunkin Donuts (my experience mirrors Jason’s, I don’t know what I was thinking except “cheap airport food”), airport crackers, and some cup o’ soup at my destination, maybe a powerbar.
- Tuesday was talk day. I hit the Korean BBQ taco truck for lunch and ran into Aaron who was having kimchee fries. Gave the talk and decided to head back to the nieghborhood I was staying in–mainly to see if I’d left my powercord at home, yes I had–and then went out walking down Cesar Chavez until I got to Las Cazuelas and got some take-out tostadas. I’m sure there are better Mexican places, but it was walking distance and tasty.
- Wednesday I met a local friend for BBQ at Green Mesquite which was an old timey place off South Congress. I got a pulled pork sandwich and some green beans but somehow neglecrted to photograph it. In the evening I took my friend Paul out for dinner to thank him for the airport pickup and we went to the Blue Dahlia Bistro a place I’d initially discounted because of a fruity website. The food was good though it was maybe a bit too upscale for my tastes (to be fair, I have very lowbrow tastes). I had some sort of black bean and corn salad with, yes, more avocado. We skipped out on that place for dessert and wound up at BANANARCHY which was hands-down the best thing I ate in Austin. Frozen banana, dipped in peanut butter topping, rolled in coconut. Joy. Pure joy.
- Thursday I miscalculated and wound up walking around hungry trying to figure out what I wanted to eat. I wound up in some place on 6th Street where I had tempura which was perfectly fine. Thursday evening, however was the Small Community Libraries Dessert Social which was at 7 so I stopped in, ate several desserts (example dessert) and then went to dinner at Guero’s which is some sort of massive tex-Mexican food place. I had tamales which I can never get out here, and was super duper happy.
- Friday I was up with coffee and met MetaFilter’s new mod Jeremy for some lunch before heading to the airport. She suggested Whip-In which is this crazy Indian restaurant in the side of a beer store. Oh and sometimes they play music. I had some Zambian seasoned rice and corn and peppers thing and Jeremy got a bowl of goat meat. It was a terrific send off to what had been a great week of eating. I had another power bar and some cereal before I went to bed in MA that night.
- Saturday my friends Andrea and Corey and I ate at the Great Taste Diner [formerly Danny's Diner] which is a Peruvian-type place but that didn’t mean the BLT there wasn’t terrific. I got home and had a cheeseburger.
This week I’m back on Jessamyn Chow which is mostly Kashi-type cereal, english muffins and a lot of brown rice and coffee. So far okay. If you’re wondering how I managed to maintain a list of all these places, I’ll point you to Foursquare where you are more than welcome to be my friend. It’s got limited utility, especially in a place like Vermont, but as a “Hey where did I eat last week?” listing machine, it can’t be beat.