Richard Doron Johnson

October 23, 2007

Austin Powers TX

Filed under: 1 — rjjazz @ 1:07 am

All I can say is it is all true! Everything I have heard about Austin, TX has been great and after having visited I can see why. I had a great time here. This city has a lot to do for the size of it and the people go out of their way to make you feel at home. Texas really does do things big from food to hospitality.

I started of my tour of the city with a free walking tour of the capitol given by the tourism center.  It began at 9am on Saturday right on the south steps of the Capitol Building. My tour had five people who all came from Jersey and New York because they had heard such great things about the city and wanted to experience it for themselves. The group of us visitors got along well and made the 2 hour walking tour fun even though the tour guide was stiff. Here is a view of the Second Capitol building built since the first one burnt down.

A second view from about 800 meters away.

A view from the Capitol steps look down towards the downtown area!

As the tour began we noticed a 5k race starting that had about 1000 new comers to walking and running getting ready to take off. I could feel the excitement and even thought about jumping in it until I thought ” I can wait another 8 days to race.”

Once we reached the base of the Capitol building I noticed a photo shoot going on of some local firemen. The women didn’t notice it at first until I pointed it out to one of them and she quickly informed the other females. This extended our tour by 5 minutes since they all wanted to take photos and get the right angle.

As we continued and learned more than I ever wanted to know about the city’s historic buildings, this Statue was right in front of us. The funny part was our tour guide never talked about the Statue even though we stood next to it for about 5 minutes.

This hotel here is called “The Driscoll” hotel and has switched ownership numerous times over the past 80 years. Fortunately for us the current owners replaced the hotel to its original looking state from its creation.

Here is a meeting room from the second floor of the hotel. I really enjoyed hearing about all the stories of how each of the meeting rooms received their names.

This is the second floor lobby where you can sit in an play on their 7 ft grand piano. No, I did not play it!

Here sits the Koppel building!

My next stop after the city tour ended was the Lendon B. Johnson Museum. I started not go here but I did upon the recommendation of the other walkers during the city tour. This museum was a lot of fun and takes about 2.5 hours to go through. As you enter there is a 23 minute movie they play for you which leads you into the beginning of the tour. For a free museum this was worth the money. They had videos, photos, statues, artifacts and an actor playing the part of Lendon B. Johnson during his presidential years. The cost was nothing but the fun level was a ten!

Here I am standing next to Lendon B. Johnson on his farm!

Here is a recreation of the oval office during his years as president!

After hanging out in the museum for awhile I walked about 2 miles from the Library to the most popular part of town. This is the football stadium. If you have heard by now this whole town is about football. The sport is everywhere and seems to be on everyones mind. As I left the stadium I saw this sign and decided to get a photo of me taken on top of it.

The next morning I decided to do my last long run of 13 miles around “The Town lake.” I started at 6:45am in hopes to run into some serious runners doing a similar pace as me.  The location and the terrain of the running path around the lake was great.  One full loop was 10.1 miles so I was looking forward to the workout. By mile 9, it was daylight and I could see people everywhere running.  I had heard this was an active city but this was a whole other level of all ages of people. As I approached mile 10, I saw the Austin University track team jogging in between their hard interval workouts.  So I figured if I slowed down a bit they would turn around and pick up the pace since I just went by a mile marker.  About 2 minutes later I turned around and could see them coming from about 100 meters away.  I started to pick up the pace to a 6:45min miles. Within about 17 seconds these flew by me, so I speed up too in hopes to keep up with them and they could pull me along for my last 2.5 miles.  After about 1 minute I looked at my watched and it said I was running almost six minute miles and the Austin College guys had already past me and put about 300 meters on me.  I thought to myself ”  What was I thinking.”  Then I turned around and noticed there was another guy trying to do the same thing and we were running the same pace.  So for the next 2 miles we ran 6:50min miles together. I was so happy to have him there because it helped to know I wasn’t the only one out there thinking I could keep up (who were we fooling).  Towards the end of the run he said “He said thanks man for pulling me along I needed the help at the end of my 7 mile run.” I just thought to myself “Me too.”

Austin was the bomb and I will be back here for sure. When will I return…………, I am not sure of but I will.


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