It’s my third trip to Austin, and my second this year. I must admit, I have grown fond of the place, in no small part as a result of my skill in choosing the most pleasant periods of weather of the year to come; blue skies mix with cool breezes to make for perfect conditions to enjoy life outside, eating, drinking, listening to live music, and riding bikes. Bliss.
Coming via Houston, which seems to be built around its oil refineries and parking lots, Austin is delightful. And doubly so now I know my way around; I have my favourite bike shops, cafes, hell, I can even discriminate between different organic supermarkets and live music venues.
But would I live here? Even in this liberal paradise? Not quite. As much affection as I have for this place, I still feel more affinity to Asia and Europe. But as an exercise in allowing myself to regroup, see some music, talk to people in my own language, and yet have a different experience from returning to the UK, it’s just magic. I am pretty lucky.
Austin on an Autumn evening.