- Date: 05-18-2014
- Current City: Austin, TX
- Current Location: Austin Lone Star Carefree RV Park
- Site Number: 64
- Wi-fi Signal: Verizon – Very Strong / AT&T – Strong / Campground Wi-fi – Average
- Mission: Work, Meet with Bloggers, Appointments
- Compliment: 2 Officers, 1 Crew, 0 Guests
- Captain: Eric Highland
- Navigator: Brittany Highland
- 1st Mate: Trogdor the Burninator
- Weather: Partly Cloudy / 78°
- Precipitation: 0%
- Humidity: 57%
- Wind: 20 mph
- Fuel: 12.5 Gallons of Diesel – 1/8 of a tank
- Odometer: 101,142
- Generator Hours: 4611.8
- Estimated Date of Departure: Tuesday, May 27th
- Next Destination: McKinney Falls State Park in Austin, Texas
Special Orders: None
14:05 – Not normal for us to go more than a day between Captain’s Log entries, but hey! We’re in Austin!!
This week has been full! Saved some guy thousands of dollars by running outside and waving at him like a madman, got hitched, found a surprise at our RV front door and so much more…
If you’ve never been to Austin, this is a MUST stop kind of town. Our two recommendations for places to park your rig are Austin Lone Star Carefree RV Park and McKinney Falls State Park. Both have their distinct advantages. Click on either of those for our personal review of each park.
14:08 – Let’s see. Where to start? When we last left off, it was Sunday and we had just arrived in Austin and on our first day here we picked up Brittany’s new 15″ MacBook Pro with Retina display which she promptly named Selah. Which is kind of a strange name for her new computer because Selah means rest, and rest is the one thing Brittany never does when she’s on her computer.
We also stopped that night at the food truck court on the corner of E 6th and Waller. I ordered a Balboa at Way South Philly and Brittany tried out a Thai place. The name of the Thai joint escapes me, but I had a bite of her Pad Thai and it was beyond excellent.
However, for those of you carnivores out there like me, just know that no Philly Cheesesteak outside of Philadelphia can top the dripping goodness of Way South Philly.
14:12 – Monday Recap:
Regular workday and one of our busiest days of the week. However I also managed to get out to All About Vapor and talk with another potential client about some social networking work. While there, I picked up my brand new uber sexy iTaste VTR.
After this, I headed out and got the hitch put on Smaug for our bike rack.
We’re both thankful for this, because having the bikes in the back of Smaug has been both limiting and annoying. We had been saving up for it, and finally got it done.
That night there was a flash flood watch in Austin. The rain pelted the top of Meriwether very loudly, but Brittany and I were snuggled up warm in our sweet sanctuary and we just kind of listened to the raindrops until we fell asleep.
14:15 – Tuesday Recap:
For those that are just getting to know us, what you may not know is that we founded and run one of the top ranked blogs about the city of Austin! It is called The Austinot and we’ve been at that blog for about 2 years now. We have over 14,000 fans on Facebook and over 7000 Twitter followers as of this writing. We also have over 574 unique articles all about Austin on that blog.
Anyway, what started out as Brittany and I writing about the city, has turned into something really special. We now have a team of 8 writers plus ourselves and the Austinot just continues to grow.
So on Tuesday night the 13th, we met with our Austinot Bloggers and had a great time. It was a time of just hanging out, some training on the WordPress platform and strategy talk.
Afterwards we went to Via 313 Pizza at Craft Pride on Rainey Street.
Via 313 is our favorite pizza joint in Austin and it is co-located at arguably one of the best craft beer joints in Austin.
14:21 – Wednesday Recap:
I pretty much saved some guy thousands of dollars on Wednesday morning by running out of Meriwether in my pajamas and waving my arms and shouting like a wildman.
It was a neighbor of ours who had packed up his big Class A RV and decided to start driving with his jacks down. He had no clue that they were down, but he decided to keep driving anyway, leaving trenches in the ground under his rig. At first I thought he would figure it out as he stopped briefly. But then he put it back in gear and tried to move again. Apparently he thought his front breaks were just locked up and was trying to break them free.
I bolted out of our rig and flagged him down. He was thankful, albeit a bit embarrassed and he wasn’t even the one outside in his skivvies! Glad I was able to help him out though. That would have been a costly repair!
I really need to get some cooler pajamas like these
That afternoon, we had a meeting with one of our long-time clients who has asked us to do social media training around the country. He gave us a rockin new Epson EX7220 projector to use, so I think that’s a pretty good sign. Had a nice lunch at Shady Grove and then we were off and back to work.
In the evening, we stopped at one of Brittany’s old haunts from when she went to the University of Texas, a little place called Milto’s Mediterranean Cafe, before heading out to the Ingrid Michaelson concert at Stubb’s Outdoors which is on Red River.
It was a sold out show and Brittany sang along to most of the songs, we had a really nice time.
14:26 – Thursday Recap:
Part of being “home” in Austin means we have to take care of some business while we’re here. That includes sending me to the
dentist read: torture chamber, for my cleaning. I really hate going to the dentist. But if you have to go to this dreadful place, Dr. Russell McFarlane is hard to beat. Needless to say I’m glad I’m through with that for now. When I was leaving the office, a fan of the Austinot recognized me and we chatted for a bit. It is still surreal to think that so many people in Austin know of our work.
Another part of being “home” is some of the worst traffic in the USA. Austin is pretty much gridlocked most of the time. But around 4:30-6:00PM on a weekday? Fugeddaboutit. So rather than fight the traffic after the dentist on Thursday, we decided to go to Mayfield Park.
It is a little park near our dentist with flowers, and gardens, and peacocks.
Yes peacocks. They are all over the place, it is a great place to sit while others sit in the exhaust fumes of Mopac and I-35.
After hanging out for a bit, we made our way to our favorite pet store, Zookeeper Exotic Pets and bought some superworms for Trogdor, who incidentally is doing very well right now. He has been eating regularly and having regular bowel movements, and he’s been fairly active in his terrarium. We’re really happy that the 1st mate seems to be back in the swing of things. We were worried for a bit there.
Leaving Zookeeper, we headed on over to one of the best kept secrets in Austin, a little Chinese joint called Din Ho. It is right next to the Target off 183 between I-35 and Mopac. ProTip: Get the wonton soup and sesame chicken and thank us later. It is utter goodness.
When we got home we briefly met a really cool couple that parked next to us. Ben and Sarah, another couple who are living the full-time lifestyle and have been down the road a few more miles than we have.
15:02 – Friday Recap:
I’ve been working on my family tree, using Ancestry.com. I just started it, but no one in my family has done this. My mother has a ton of information and without her, much is lost. I also have a half-aunt on my father’s side that has helped me narrow down some info there too.
Friday was a regular workday but a busy one. When we were finally done with the workday we invited our new friends Ben and Sarah out to the pool with us. They came and hung out with us and I have to tell you, that they were an awesome couple. Their stories of their own adventures in Mexico have made us a little envious.
It was a shame that we only got to spend a little bit of time with them. I could easily see them being long-term pals. I hope we’re able to stay in touch. After hanging out with them, we grilled up some burgers and called it a night.
15:05 – Saturday Recap:
Got up and went to breakfast at the Red River Cafe. Spent most of the time talking about what the next year looks like. Decided to take a drive down to Mozart’s Coffee Roasters.
Mozart’s is a very special place for Brittany and I. I’ll let her tell you more about it if she chooses. We went there with the express purpose of outlining our entire summer itinerary. It took hours to do, but I think we’ve got it locked down.
Here it is as best I can remember off the top of my head. If you have any suggestions for any of these places, please leave a comment below!
- May 31st: Galveston, TX
- June 7th: New Orleans, LA
- June 14th: Mobile, AL
- June 22nd: Florida Caverns State Park, FL
- June 27th: Orlando, FL
- July 4th: St. Augustine, FL
From there we have an idea of what we’d like to do, but it isn’t set in stone. Those stops would include:
- Savannah, GA
- Charleston, SC
- Myrtle Beach, SC
- Raleigh, NC
- Virginia Beach, VA
- Washington DC
- Philadelphia, PA
- New York, NY
After New York, we’d turn around and head back down to Florida before making our way back to Austin, TX. Again the last part of this is very much up in the air, but definitely on the radar.
Eventually we made it home, took a dip in the pool and then decided to go out to Texas Roadhouse for dinner. When we got home we just snuggled up and watched some SNL.
15:15 – Sunday Recap:
And that brings us to today! Haha, if you are still with us, thank you! Please leave us a comment below. We really appreciate it when people take the time to keep up with our adventures.
So today we started off by going to the Austin Stone which is our local church here in Austin. That was followed by a quick trip to Sam’s Club and then home to rest.
When we got home we were surprised! Our friends Ben and Sarah had left us a “care package” with a note by our front steps.
(Ben and Sarah, if you are reading this, thanks! You guys rock, and we really hope to stay in touch with y’all. Maybe caravan sometime somewhere insane.)
In the package was all kinds of goodies including: A Japanese utility knife, a reading light for a tablet, some mosquito repellant stuff, mad libs, and a bunch of cans of nuts!
Now how cool is that? RVers are some of the coolest people out there.
Tonight, we’re expecting our friend Michelle to stop by for some hanging out and grilling and then it’s our last bit of rest before the work week.
Remarks – I’ve found that it is much easier to keep a daily Captain’s Log when we aren’t at “home” in Austin. Whenever we’re “home,” our days are full and the pace is often frantic. By the time I’m ready to write the Captain’s Log, I’m exhausted and just want to rest. Conversely, whenever we’re not here, the pace is much slower and our days are more relaxed. Realization: I like being “home,” but I don’t get much rest here.
16:41 – The Thai food trailer I tried last Sunday was called Coat & Thai. The Pad Thai was some of the best I’ve had in Austin (Titaya’s being probably the best – a brick and mortar joint on N. Lamar near 2222).
Eric’s been working really hard all afternoon to catch up with this Captain’s Log. It’s been fun to revisit all that we fit into this past week. The pace has been exhausting, and the coming two weeks will be as busy if not more so. But it’s important to tend to business, and we have to fit in visits to all our favorite spots!
Today after church and lunch, I took a large blanket to wash at the laundry facility here. $2.75 to wash and dry, but I met a friendly Belgian woman named Simonne in the process. She works here at Lone Star and I loved her story about how her grandfather built her a bicycle to ride to school, out of odds and ends because they were so poor. She was embarrassed by how ugly it was, so she painted it red with some house paint. The first time she rode it, she ended up turning the insides of her legs red!
While Eric worked hard, I sat outside under our awning and read Ambrose’s book about Meriwether Lewis and Thomas Jefferson. I moved inside to read because it was getting warm, and ended up falling asleep on the bed. It’s good to me to catch up on my rest a bit.
Even the smallest thing out of place inside Meriwether makes the space seem cluttered, and right now a tidying up is desperately in order. My high school friend Michelle should be here soon for dinner and some evening fun! -B
Hey Guys, I used to have some family that lived in Crystal River, FL and when visiting them we went to Homasassa Springs, FL and the state park there (https://www.floridastateparks.org/homosassasprings/). If you are near the area I definitely recommend this as an activity! Lots of fun to have and animals to see!
Sweet care package as well…We love mad libs 🙂
Thanks for the tip Greg! We actually spent quite a bit of time on that website and we’ll be staying at Florida Caverns State Park on June 22nd. As far as the care package, it was a total surprise. I remember pulling up and seeing that Ben and Sarah were gone and there was just this feeling of suckiness. They were so cool. Hope to see them again and meet many more like them in our travels.