Saturday, February 13, 2016

Austin Texas

Our train arrived slightly late, but still in time to get a taxi to the hotel and get some supper in the hotel restaurant overlooking the river. Normally we try to find non-chain hotels with something different about them - historic or artsy or whatever. But this time we had trouble finding anything interesting so we chose the Radisson since it was by the river. Hotels aren't cheap in Austin, and that's before taking the punishing hit of exchange. I console myself with the knowledge that my company is making lots on the exchange when we sell into the USA.

Our first day was beautiful warm (+27c) sunny weather - quite a contrast from Chicago. We had nothing planned so after coffee at Austin Java we wandered along the paths by the river. Like Saskatoon, they've done a nice job of the riverbank. Although it was a weekday, there were lots of people out walking, running, and bicycling. (Away from the river, Austin is the usual car-centric pedestrian unfriendly North American city.) We discovered Austin is famous for its bats.

building reflections

More reflections, in the buildings and in the water.

river reflections

Curious squirrels

curious squirrel

And a wind blown egret with a couple of small turtles for company. (I didn't notice the turtles till I looked at the photo on the computer)

egret & turtles

We eventually found the botanical gardens, where not much was growing this time of year, but there were a few flowers and butterflies and a lizard, and the grounds were nice.

backlit leaf

koi and reflections

It was my kind of day, just wandering around with my camera looking at the world and recording bits and pieces of its beauty and wonder to share.

lizard between leaves

butterfly on flower

turtle swimming
We had a late lunch at Z'Tejas Mexican Restaurant. Stopped in at a photography gallery that was showing photographs from Big Bend National Park where we're headed next. And then to REI to buy supplies for our upcoming backpacking trip in Big Bend. Supper was tapas style at Cru Wine bar. (Don't miss the goat cheese beignets!)

For more photos, see all 26 as a slideshow or overview

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