We woke up at the Ranch House Motel. We had a great
breakfast (included in the price of the room -- we
definitely recommend the Ranch House) and hit the highway.
It took a couple of tries to actually get onto I-20, since
the signs in the area are pretty ambiguous, and you have to
swerve across oncoming traffic to get into the merge
We took I-20 to Abilene then took 183 south towards Austin.
We had been expecting a repeat of yesterday's long, boring
drive but 183 was one of the best roads we've seen so far.
It has a 70 MPH limit most of the way, except for several
cute little towns where you have to slow to 45 or so. The
scenery was outstanding. In the town of Zephyr we saw some
for sale and a cool fire
183 took us all the way to Austin and when we got there we
went first to the University of Texas. There are lots of
on the campus (and some cool funky
stores off campus). After we'd looked around there, we
went to the Governor's
mansion. George W. should be moving to DC tomorrow, but
we didn't see a U-Haul or anything. We went to the
State Capitol, which holds a visitors' center and an O
around at the Capitol.)
We were pointed towards the 6th Street
shopping area, but the map we got had a reference to a bat
colony on it, so we decided to check that out first.
Austin has one of the worlds largest urban bat colonies (1.5
million) living under the Congress Street Bridge. Near the
bridge are all sorts of bat information kiosks where we
learned that bats are rarely rabid, that they don't get
tangled in your hair, and that they eat something like their
own weight in mosquitos each night, which made them
Jennifer's new best friends. Sadly, the bats head to Mexico
each year in October, so we didn't
see a single bat.
We then went to 6th Street, which turned out to be five
blocks of bars and tattoo and piercing parlors. There is
probably a lot going on there later at night, but we were
there just after sundown and there were only a few
happy-hour people around.
Dinner was at Threadgill's, an Austin landmark. Delicious
southern cooking. If you are ever in Austin, eat there.
After dinner, we hit the road for about three more hours. We
had just passed through Houston when we stopped at a Best
Western for the night.