When I was a teenager it was okay but I didn’t really distinguish it from other places because Austin was all I knew. A tiny bit of wanderlust left me feeling trapped and unable to appreciate anything that was truly great about the city.
Later, after living in San Diego for a while and coming back home, the boiling hot summers, traffic and utter lack of Pacific Ocean made Austin seem harsh and oppressive by comparison. Jason moved here in the mid 90s and we had a few good years enjoying the social scene… but that grew stale after a while and eventually we started seriously exploring other places to spend the rest of our lives. The time and the money were just never there, though, so we stayed. Reluctantly. Always with a plan to get out as soon as we could.
And then we had Sam.
Becoming a mom changes everything – anyone who’s done it will tell you that. I’ve changed in a million different ways since Sam came into my life – a million different ways. But one of my favorite things about this mom gig is the fresh perspective it’s given me — particularly when it comes to my surroundings. Particularly when it comes to Austin. It’s not just MY hometown anymore – now it’s Sam’s, too. And seeing it with that new set of eyes has made me realize just low lucky we’ve both got it.
The reason I started this blog was to share this new perspective with you – to maybe remind you, if you live here, how lucky we all are to call this place home. It doesn’t matter who you are, what age, race, religion, sexual preference or walk of life – there’s ALWAYS something to do in Austin. Live music. Festivals. Parks. Lakes. Shows. Dining. FUN. All you have to do is find it.
It’s not perfect – no place is. I still want to hide in my air-conditioned house for most of the summer and the traffic still drives me nuts. But for me, the balance on the scale has tipped and the good far, FAR outweighs the bad. I hope it does for you, too.
I was planning to write a big review of the Zilker Park Kite Festival, which we go to every year and had a wonderful time at this weekend – but honestly, I think the pictures speak for themselves. Scroll down a bit and see the day we had – and then tell me Austin’s not worth it.
The pure joy of laying on a blanket in the middle of Zilker Park, on a beautiful day, and looking up to see your son’s face with a huge smile, surrounded by THOUSANDS of kites in the air – well, for me, that’s Austin.