Austinversary!

Pete and I are not ones to celebrate anniversaries. There is no special date where we looked longingly into each other's eyes and committed our courtship to one another. We don't give each other presents (ever) or embark on gushy romantic dates to honor a month, six months, a whole year (oh boy!) of going steady. We just don't care. 

On that note, we've been in Austin for exactly a month! Celebration! 

More impressively, we've survived as Winnebago inhabitants for five weeks now. And we haven't killed each other yet! In fact, I think we like each other more...

But after five weeks of going strong, the Lesharo finally rendered one of us useless with sickness. Who? I'll give you a hint:

I got a fever!
I'm a sucker for self-humiliation. 
Honestly, I'm surprised I didn't get sick sooner. I'm known for being a frequent victim of illness. I'm sure this particular bout of fever, aches, chills and general ick is strongly related with my first few weeks back in an educational environment. It's been a while since I was coughed, sneezed, breathed and spit on by five and six year-olds. 

Unfortunately for Pete, there is no real way to quarantine yourself from a sick girlfriend in a ridiculously small RV. There is no sleeping-on-the-couch option. He kept his distance by sitting at the back of the Lesharo for as long as possible.   


Notice his lack of pants. He was hot. I was bundled under the covers, with a sweatshirt, sweatpants and the heater blasting in my direction. And I was still cold. 

I wasn't so useless that I couldn't go to work, though. After all, I am the breadwinner in the Winnebago. Luckily, my fever subsided after a couple of days.

Yesterday, I was feeling antsy and wanted to get out and enjoy the sunshine. Being cooped up and sick in an RV will do that to you. So Pete and I decided to go for a walk. First, we headed over to the Shoal Creek Trail, which is an ineffective way to get from Point A to Point B. For instance, Pete had a job interview the other day in North Austin. To avoid traffic, which Pete detests after a number of bike accidents in Chicago, he decided to ride his bike north along this path to get to his destination. Some folks told us that it was little rough. Pete assumed it would at least be manageable. Wrong.

At times, the path requires you to forge rivers (a small creek):


Dodge cliff edges:


And climb mountains (rock walls):


Not exactly the type of commute Pete was looking for on the way to a job interview. He Clark Kent-ed at a bar, changing out of his soiled articles into something a bit more presentable for one seeking employment. He didn't get the job. Maybe for the best, because this path would have been one hell of a regular commute. 

Back to our walk. Pete wanted to show me the insanity of this hike and bike trail. He pointed out the areas where one must cross over (through) the creek to remain on the trail. We saw a couple of bikers who were caught off guard by the arrival of water on their journey:

WTF?!
We continued on the trail for maybe two miles or so. It was pleasant in the warmth of the midday sun. And, we didn't have to carry our bikes over boulder-ridden terrain. So that was nice. 

Amidst our walk, we came across a lovely live oak tree, which we found necessary to climb and photograph.  

This was not planned to look like a high school graduation photo.
Not one to be outdone, Pete ventured higher into the beast:

Monkey boy

Can you find the wild Peter?


On the way down, I warned Pete to be careful of the 'nut knob'. There was a knob sticking out of the tree and, well, you can figure it out:

Eek!
In upsetting live oak news: Pete and I heard on NPR this morning that Austin's live oak and red oak tree populations are severely threatened by an incurable, fungus-induced disease called oak wilt. More than 10,000 trees in the Austin area have been killed due to this disease. These trees help to keep Austin a bit cooler (if that's really possible) in the summertime. God help me come summer...

Anyways, we journeyed back towards town and decided to cross the creek to hit up the Shoal Creek Saloon. Here is what it looks like from the path:


 And from within:


We parked ourselves at the back bar, imbibed a pitcher of Shiner Bock and snacked on a basket of assorted fried critters (shrimp, oysters, crawfish). We people-watched the diners below us, most of them looking just above our heads at the UT basketball game on one of the four flat screens at the bar. 

Pete, blatantly staring at people.
In further food news, we've enjoyed an excellent week of tasty eats. Garth, next door, invited us over for a Gumbo and Sangria feast on Thursday night. It was spectacular. You can't beat a warm bowl of gumbo on a truly frigid night and sweet, delicate sangria served from an old coffee can. Yum. Pete also made some bomb-ass meals. He grilled a whole chicken last night, made a pot of our newest staple, cabbage and turkey soup, and whipped together a mixture of taco turkey meat and curry seasoned brown rice for tacos. Yum!

  
And when I was sick, he was so kinds to make me a fried rice omelet, a staple dish of his submarine in Hawaii. I ate it before I could take a picture. It was awesome. 

Oh, our mechanic finally called us back! He'll hopefully have a window of time to work on our engine at the very beginning of February. I can only imagine the possibilities of a more functional Lesharo! 

As for the rest of our Sunday, we'll probably just go grocery shopping. Then maybe hit up a drink special nearby. But that runs the risk of having to watch football and we could care less about sports. Anniversaries and sports. What's the big deal? I don't need to receive a gift from someone whom I share all my finances with and I certainly don't need to watch exceedingly rich men run around in tight pants. 


Shout out to a regular reader: Happy Birthday Aunt Jennifer! I hope you made that $$ in Atlantic City!