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Garbage and Wildflowers
Trip Report

The band Garbage, starring Shirley Manson, was on the road again.

They were playing in a small club in Austin, so we got tickets.
The show was last Saturday night, so we took off Friday to make weekend of it.

Garbage was to play Dallas this past weekend, but they're part of a bigger festival lineup
and we wanted to see the full 2012 show, so it was worth driving the extra miles.

The trouble started right after we croosed the Red River from Oklahoma into Texas.
Traffic - backed-up, non-stop, bumper-to-bumper. 
All the way to Dallas - I hate traffic.

I give Tulsa a bunch of crap, but we hardly ever have traffic here.
I went to the Post Office today and I was reminded how nice it is
to not have to stand in the long damn lines at the Post Office.

The only lines we have here in Oklahoma is for fast food.
Just try to get a burger from McDonalds at midnight.
You'll be eighth in line.

Eventually we made it to Dallas.
I've been asking for a week, "Who's got good Mexican food?"

I got a lot of replies, and some of them were even practical.
One reply I got was, "This place has great food, but you might not survive the neighborhood."

You'd think Dallas would have at least 100 Mexican Restaurants, but you'd be wrong.
I tried several recommendations from my iPhone, but when we called them, AT&T
came on to say, "the restaurant we recommended to you is closed permanently."

Instead of offering a restaurant to me and then saying it's "permanently closed,"
why not delete the closed restaurant from your listings.
That's what those twice-a-week updates are for, right?

Since we had to gamble, I decided to gamble at a place near the Interstate.
No sense driving 30 miles out of the way to be disappointed, right?

We ended up at Luna del Noche, which is Spanish for,
"Only lunatics eat here."

It's a clean, new-ish place in a new-ish strip mall.
It was a very nice building with new-ish everything, but the food was awful.
My beef enchiladas were dryer than a burlap sack full of rice in West Texas.

Odd that they would spend so many thousands of dollars on their location and then serve
tasteless food, or maybe we just caught them on a day when the substitute chef was working.

The service blew, too.
We finally got our check, but the waiter never came for it. The bill was $18.50
and since we had no waiter, I dropped a twenty on the tray and we left.

Our waiter, who was busy telling jokes to the other waiters when we left,
chased us out out into the parking lot.  "Hey, you forgot to pay your bill!"

That's right, Cubby.
I "forgot" to pay my bill and you "caught me."

So we're back on I-35, headed south towards Austin - in complete traffic gridlock.

How many f-ing cars are in the hellhole they call Tejas?

It's 2 PM on a Friday and I-35 was a parking lot from Dallas to Austin.
How do you people deal with that bullshit every day of your lives?

We'd get up to 65 MPH, then slow to 30 and then gring to a halt.
Most of Texas traffic is pickups and SUVs, so these drivers said "Fuck it,"
and drove off the Interstate and onto the side access roads.

So we get into Austin after f-ing dark because I-35 has 50,000 cars and trucks on it.
We drove by the concert venue to get an idea of what to do the next night, then we
grabbed a Motel 6 and looked for more Mexican food.  We found Poppasito's.

Their food was decent, but they got our order wrong.
We ordered onions, but none were delivered.
I asked for "meat sauce" on my enchiladas and got cheese, instead.

Is it possible to get good Mexican food in the state of Tejas?

So it's 9:30 now and I'm looking forward to a nightcap to help me sleep
but the liquor stores in Tejas close at 9 PM.   Why do people live in Tejas?
That's OK, I've been fighting heavy traffic for eight hours so sleep wasn't a problem.

Next thing I know it'a 8 AM and Mrs. Bart is ready to go.
She says we're going to the Lady Bird Wildflower Center.

You young dudes out there - this is the trick to a long and successful marriage. 
When your wife announces that you're going to spend the day looking at wildflowers,
you smile and say, "Nothing I'd like better, Honey," and act like you mean it.

I thought this might be a blue agave plant
but someone said it was just regular, old Texas yucca.

This is the plant that started the trouble - the Texas Bluebonnet.

She heard there were giant fields of blue in Tejas, and this dead plant didn't whet her appetite,
so she had me go ask the Information Desk where we could find real wildflowers in bulk.

The lady said "Try Fredericksburg" which she indicated was just a few miles away.

We had all day so it shouldn't have been a problem - but the traffic!

We did find some wildflowers along the road...

It was 3 PM before we got there and by then it was time to head back.

I called my buddy RJ, the Nomadic Pillar, who was also going to the concert.
We were going to meet before the show for a cocktail (and also to get a parking spot
so we wouldn't have to walk a long way after the show in a unfamiliar neighborhood.)

So now it's about 6:30 and we're looking for a place to park for the show
when my text message beeper goes off.

It's RJ, who texted to say the Garbage concert was cancelled.

Perfect - we drove 500 miles to see a cancelled concert.

So, we met up with RJ and went to Guaro's Taco Bar where we
had appetisers and a margarita as we contemplated our bad luck.

Turns out Duke, one of Shirley's guitar players had a family emergency
so it looks like we'll be driving another 500 miles when they re-schedule.

Gee, I hope we get to visit Austin in mid-July.

Last thing, I'd be willing to drive some miles to find some real good Tex-Mex food.

Is there anything in Texas worth eating?


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