Here I sit, in a Red Roof Inn in Austin, Texas. I am here with my sister Becca and her adorable puppy dog Gabe after an 11 hour drive south from Kansas City.
On Monday, Becca will have her first day of dog training school at Triple Crown Dog Academy. If thoughts of “dog training school” leave you at a loss, then don’t worry – you’re not the only one. Becca herself wrote a great blog about her dubious thoughts about what this experience might be like. I? Think that it’s rad that she’s following her passion.
To be honest, I felt a bit hesitant to take this trip with Becca and Gabe today. Last week, Gabe barfed all over the back seat of my Honda – rivers and fountains of chunky brown liquid that soaked into my upholstery and pooled in the space between the seat and the door – and the scent isn’t giving any indication that it will fade in the future… ever. The last thing in the world that I wanted was a repeat scenario. But today, the three of us lived out my wildest road tripping dreams: in Becca’s black Toyota Tacoma, driving south, with a dog, listening to music, seeing places I had never seen before. The only thing that would have made it more fun is if our other siblings could have been along – but we settled for a phone call to Sarah, urgently asking for directions to a coffee establishment in Edmond, Oklahoma. Gabe was a perfect angel, except when he decided that he NEEDED to hang out on my lap, which meant that his furry butt was in my face.
Now, since you have probably been craving a list from me, I give you:
“Things I saw on the way to Austin”:
* swarms of birds, “Planet Earth” style, between Kansas City and Wichita
* a billboard: “Just say yes to Jesus… or REGRET IT FOREVER,” in northern Oklahoma
* Oklahoma City, which is the site of the fabled Oklahoma City Bombing… and this nightmare
* so many Subway franchises, I couldn’t count
* “The Auto Ranch” north of Dallas, which, as far as I could tell, is just a sprawling field where cars go to die
* a billboard: “Call us for your Vasectomy Reversal: 1-713-REVERSE,” south of Ft. Worth
* a bumper sticker: “Cowboys for Jesus” (I should get the female counterpart for my Honda)
* a rest-stop painted as the flag of Texas, complete with matching trash cans
* Waco, Texas – two words: David Koresh
* a shirt in a truck stop: “Silly boys – trucks are for GIRLS!” (I almost bought it for Becca)
Tomorrow, we’ll drop Gabe at a doggie daycare at a local Petsmart, and head out to see the city. Imagine me all Sandra Bullock-esque, in a long flowing skirt and a tank top with cool, funky jewelry.
That’s how I’ve always imagined Austin.