Saturday, May 26, 2007
Travels to Austin or the Road to Hippie Hollow
Last week I flew to Austin for an educational conference. Being a native of Las Vegas, I find most conference towns pretty boring. The conference day ends, you go and try to find a place to eat, most towns roll up at 9pm and you end up spending the majority of the time watching tv alone in some hotel room. I don't know what I expected from Austin as I have never been there or anywhere in Texas, but let me tell you, it is ever a party town as Vegas.
On the way to the hotel from the airport, some guy on the shuttle mentions a free concert going on somewhere, but he doesn't know where. My sister and I (did I mention my sister from Reno joined me?) decided we would find this free concert.
We did! It was way cool. I have never seen more rednecks and hippies congregated in the same place as there were at this outdoor concert. I wasn't quite sure of those wearing t-shirts with "Keep Austin Weird!" but suffice it to say there were all kinds roaming the grounds.
The top talent for the night, of the long list of talent, were Bonnie Raitt and Kris Kristopherson! Wow. It took me back to the early 70's, music, tie-dyed t-shirts, peace signs, the smell of mary jo riding the breeze in and out through the crowd. Tremendous musicians. Lots of local talent that were simply fabulous! The concert ended with Kris singing "Me and Bobby McGee." Ahhh.
That was the first night. Every night we found a different place with a different band, and great food. The last day prior to heading back to the airport we took off and found our way to Travis Lake and Hippie Hollow. I had seen it on the tourist map we had received when we had checked into the hotel. I had to go to Hippie Hollow, after all I had been a hippie in my teen years, I had to find this place and make a connection.
It wasn't until we had paid our $10 and were walking down the path in our little jean skirts with our sandals and our little purses swinging by our sides, that we realized, by the man walking toward us, that Hippie Hollow is a NUDE BEACH!! I cannot stress enough our complete surprise at seeing a man with shoes and socks, straw hat and nothing else swaggering toward us. We both made a right face to stare at the woods and close our eyes. I don't know what we were thinking, perhaps if our eyes were closed, he couldn't see us standing there biting our lips and trying not to laugh. Which then had me quite alarmed that we were breaking the most sacred rule of all......NO LAUGHING WHEN NAKED MEN WALK TOWARD YOU! I am certain that cannot be good for any man's self esteem!
We soon realized we were surrounded. Naked people everywhere. Imagine being the only clothed persons there and trying desperately to act cool. Trying to keep the hysterical laughter form spurting forth everytime some guy came swinging by, trying to talk to people and keep your gaze looking at their face and not wandering down to you know where! I hate not fitting it. I quickly pulled my sunglasses out of my purse and told my sister there was only one course of action "Quick! Take your clothes off--Blend in!"