Column: Austin: come for the ribs, stay for the bats


Wednesday’s column is about my vacation last week in Austin, Texas. Here are a few photos to illustrate moments from my column. Above, the line outside Franklin Barbecue from my place in line. An equal number of people ended up behind me.


Above, a piece of surveying equipment seems to watch two construction cranes at work, a sign of the city’s building boom, especially by the waterfront. Below, a ghost bike is part of a memorial to those killed by a motorist during the South by Southwest music festival.


Below, a Frito pie, which is chili, cheese and onions atop a bed of Frito corn chips. Not bad, with the chips more interesting than saltines, but not something I’d order again, I don’t think.


And, lastly, here’s a view of the Congress Bridge bats and the people watching them.


Videos: The animatronic LBJ at the presidential library tells a corny joke (it’s like the Bulletin’s Slice of Wry in oral form) and bats pour out from under the Congress Avenue bridge.

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  • DebB

    It sounds like a great week, although I have to say, some of the food sounds like heartburn and heart attack on a plate! Gotta watch that, now that you’ve hit the big 5.0! Glad to have you back.

    • davidallen909

      I did wonder about that a couple of times. No heartburn was suffered. It was hard to resist Hoover’s and the claim (by road-foodies Jane and Michael Gross) that it has the best chicken fried steak in Texas.

      • DebB

        BTW, on the subject of food, the Brick Market Deli on Arrow just east of Garey is open now. I’ve been meaning to try it and keep forgetting. Have you tried it yet?

        • davidallen909

          I have not, but will.

  • Ramona

    Sounds like a great vacation.

    I have seen the bats come out of the Carlsbad Caverns. It truly is a remarkable sight.

    Now that you’re back, go eat a couple of pieces of fruit to recover.

    • davidallen909

      I went kind of light on vegetables and fruit last week and now have to readjust to everyday life!

  • Doug Evans

    Welcome back! Enjoyed reading the post and the column… My freshman college roommate, who now lives out that way, found your column via my “like” on Facebook and sent me a message I thought I’d pass along:

    “David wrote a good article on Austin, but he should have driven 30 min. S-SE to Lockhart–home of Black’s, Smitty’s and Kreutz’s BBQs, although Franklin’s is quite tasty. He should have also mentioned Zilker Park or the Hill Country. Hope that you and your family are well!”

    So now you know! 🙂

    • davidallen909

      He left something similar on FB too. His ideas were all good, but that “should have” locution bugs me. I was there five days and did five days’ worth of things, and here’s someone saying I “should have” roamed hither and yon to do five more days’ worth of things. Leaves me with the impression I failed somehow.

      The main thing I wish I’d done was see the Capitol: I saw the exterior but ran out of time to hang around the lovely park around it or to step inside.

  • Nancy Charest

    Bats are amazing creatures and even though you are back from TX you might be interested in The Bat Sanctuary there: