ATX VS BFLO

Since I’ve been here for about two weeks, I’ve been picking up on the differences between the place I left and the place that I think is my future. Here we go…

Topic: Traffic

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Buffalo: Oh ya know, it takes 20 mins to get anywhere.  There’s no problem getting anywhere.

Austin: Bumper to bumper.  Yeah, I live in a city with an busload of traffic now.  It’s the people like me moving to the area every day that contribute to that. I’ll take the blame. It’s not the worst but I also haven’t been late for work yet due to “traffic.” I’m sure it will grate my nerves eventually.

Topic: Jobs

Buffalo : Huh? Jobs? They hire people for good jobs in Buffalo?

Austin: This is like the land of opportunity in TX.  All over TX good jobs are hiring.  Its like the promise land for those struggling to find their “place” in career-ville.  You can find a great jobs here ( and make more money too!) No depressed state in this Texas economy.

Topic: Food ( Although both places have deeelish food, there are differences.)

Buffalo: Buffalo has amazing food.  I miss the wings, pizza, jims, Wegmans, and all the GREEK RESTAURANTS! Oh yeah and beef on weck too.  I don’t trust pizza and wings here.  I will wait until I visit buffalo for that.  I also have yet to find a Greek diner that makes a killer souvlaki yet.  I haven’t even seen a greek restaurant yet.  I miss those.

Austin: The Mexican and BBQ is amaaaazing…even at the basic chains around the area.  I think I wont be suffering too much as long as I have the good BBQ and Mexican 🙂

Topic: Gas Prices

Buffalo:  It went up again?  It’s almost 4 dollars a gallon??? WTF  It took me 60 dollars to fill up my tank. UGH.

Austin: What? It’s $3.05/ gallon.  It only cost me $45.00 to fill my big ass Taurus today.  That is a lot of money saved on gasoline!!!  I LOVE THEIR GAS PRICES!!!

Topic: Fashion

Buffalo: I could be dressier in Buffalo.  I loved dressing up!

Austin:  It’s VERY casual here.  This is a good and a bad thing. Yeah, you don’t have to look like your going to Las Vegas every weekend but if you look too dressed up in certain spots, people judge. I saw their eyes.  LOL I’m not really concerned about being too dressed up if I want to be but I know it’s not really the norm.  I love putting on new fancy and colorful things! I don’t think it will stop me from rocking a fuchsia pink blazer! I wouldn’t suggest 4 inch stilettos on rainey thou. Try  another area in Austin if you want to rock those! To be honest though, It’s kinda awesome to know you can go to certain areas looking like a bum and nobody will judge you for it 🙂

Topic: Weather

Buffalo: According to my Mother today, ” Winter is coming…it was freezing today.” It’s also not gloomy here very much.  I’m digging the abundance of sun. I do not think i’m going to miss winter either.  I was sick of scraping my car off.

Austin: Its cold in the AM, but once 12 pm rolls around…I’m rocking a tee-shirt and no jacket.  I saw men running shirtless at 6:30 pm today.  God Bless Texas!!! SO YES, It may be warmer and drier here BUT when it rains its RAINS.  It’s flash flood warning, buckets dumping on your car rain.  It’s so bad, cars get swept away in into ditches if you hit the wrong spot.   Driving in this pouring rain is absolutely insane.  You can feel the car not touching the pavement sometimes.  You can barely see in front of you.  Anxiety city! I haven’t hydroplane yet but I knew there was potential to a couple of times. t can also get to 100 degrees or so here.  I haven’t had this happen to me  this yet, but I’m sure I’m going to hate it and stay indoors as much as possible.

Topic: Pets in Public Places

Buffalo: I didn’t see it TOO often but when I did, I loved it.  A friends mother once brought her dogs in the pink once.  I thought it was cute 🙂

Austin:  Dogs are let almost anywhere in the city.  One bar called bangers has a mini dog park set up in the back of the bar.  You’ll see random pups wander into the bar on a leash and watch their owners play pong for a bit.  It’s sweet.

Topic: The Toll Roads

Buffalo:  Simple and straightforward.  People work at them…you get a ticket, then pay for the toll sometime later down the road.  EASY PEASY.

Austin:  You see the toll road sign…but nobody works in the booth?!  You drive under this camera thing here they send you the fee.  OK, so if I’m not in a permanent address getting my mail forwarded are there penalties for not paying it on time.  Why have the freaking road if NOBODY is in the booth. UGH its very annoying. I’d rather pay it up front!

Topic: Speed Limit

Buffalo :  70 is the max…most roads are 65.  I thought that as normal.

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Austin: The highest I’ve seen is 80…80! Jesus.  Most roads I drive on daily now and 70 or 75.  That’s still crazy b/c I see tons of accidents.  Why set the speed so high if people are always crashed on the side of the road?   OYE, I sound like a responsible adult.  What is so crazy though is despite this fight they had to make this insanely high speed limit the law, people either drive 10 above it or 10 below it.  It’s Mario Andretti or your 80 year old grandma driving around you.  If it says 70 drive 70  or 75 (not 65 or 85.) You fought for this crazy ass speed limit…drive it!

I’m sure I could go on for days…but that’s all I have for now.  Until next time

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Honkey Tonk Band at The White Horse

The Adventure continues…with a few job offers!!!

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The next week after ACL, was extremely exciting. I had 2 interviews this week.  I got one of the jobs but not sure the outcome of the second interview.  I would prefer the second job because, frankly, it pays more (AND I’d get my own office.  I want my own office PLEASE!)  I won’t find out about the second job until this coming Tuesday.  I got the first job at the Better Business Bureau.  Worse comes to worse, I’ll at least be working somewhere soon.

The weekend was remotely laid back.  Nothing really happened until Saturday. My fellow Buffalo Ex-Pats, Ron and Kasia, suggested we go to Dogtoberfest at the mall in the morning.  Basically it was a ton of cute pups wandering around the outdoor mall in Halloween costumes.  It was a bit too much (too much cute-ness.)  As avid dog lovers, Ron and Kasia dressed up their mini wieners too.  The Boss was the Big Bad Wolf and Daisy was Little Red Riding Hood.  It was funny at this event…you’d notice all the corgi owners in a group at one point.  There would be at least 4 corgis conjuring together.  There was a group of 6 great Danes wandering around the malls pathways.  Even the wieners got into the group action.  They all had costumes on, it was very adorable.

In the Afternoon, I set off to an event called Critter Fest.  It was a party Jeremiah’s friend had done for 3 years.  They brew their own beer and cook animal meat.  The meat was T A S T Y BTW.  The beer at the party was from the Austin Brewing Company.  It’s a small local company but the beers were great!  The cider was fantastic and Oranatang something tasted like a blue moon.  They need to get that stuff in the bars/restaurants stat! They’d make a lot of dinero on it.  I couldn’t stay too long bc Jill wanted to celebrate my job success.  How was I to say no to a night on the town?!

This was my first Saturday night out in Austin.  I hadn’t been out on the town on a weekend night before! (Hard to believe, I know.)  Since Jill never saw the East Side of Austin, she wanted to check it out.  Obviously, I had never been there either so I was excited to see how it’s different from Rainey and 6th street.  The East Side is considered their “Brooklyn of Austin.”  Everyone wants a piece of it.  It reminded me of Allentown…I felt at home.  Funky spots with outdoor patios.

Our First stop was a place called Whistler. Super cute.  Really fun AND had exotic cocktails.  I didn’t get one and the one I tried from Jill was WAY too spicy.  Yeah…I’m going to have to adjust to this “spicy thing” now, I am in Texas.

After Whistler, Jill’s boyfriend Duane, wanted to go to a place called White Horse.  This place was FUNNNKKYYYY.  It was like the Pink and a honkey tonk bar made a baby!  They had a country band playing and it was so fun to watch the people two step.  Duane tried to show me this “two step” business”…yeah right.   Maybe some other day…Leaving the bar there were literally 2 horses tied up at the no parking sign.  They actually looked like they were in pain.  It was actually sad.  Their owners tied their poor horses up so tight.  I guess someone said they were calling animal control on the owners.  Go good Samaritans!

ON SUNDAY WAS JUST FOOTBALL- THERE’S NOT TOO MUCH TO SAY ABOUT THIS ONE BUT…THE BILLS WON! THE PATS LOST! OK IN MY BOOK J

LET’S GO BUFFALO!!!!

WE BILL-EVE…

New Beginings…

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Saying bye to Mom was tough, it was time to put my nose to the grindstone.  I was alone, unemployed, and couch surfing until I got an apartment. I guess that means I was technically “homeless.”  Eeeek!  But It was only the first week of my Austin move, so I was going to have some fun.

The first week was good.  I had an interview Monday ( I never heard from them BTW.) That’s OK.  I’ll take an interview on the first day of the job hunt. Someone said that it will take a month to get a job but that’s stupid.  The week was mostly filled with job hunts , Nick’s Oktberfest gathering at Bangers, and ACL that coming weekend.  It was a great introduction to Austin.

Nick’s bar pick was on Rainey street.  It was called Bangers.  kasia, Ron, Nick, and I went.  All the Buffalo refugees.  Rainey is a street made up of Allentown like style bars.  The bars have great outdoor patios and designed out of old cottages.  The oldest one is called Lustre Pearl.  It’s an awesome street.  The only problem was I was way too dressed up for the street.  I’m in love with the Rainey Street bars.  Laid back, fun, good drinks, and much like the Allentown I miss and love 🙂

Before I even got to TX, Kasia surprised me with a fabulous gift. She got me a wristband to the Austin City Limits Music festival!!!  This is such a big deal.  It was going to be my 7th festival in 5 years.  I guess that a bit excessive. I don’t care.  On Friday, I bid Alana and Jer farewell for a few days and traveled off to Kasia’s.

Ron, Kasia, Nick, and I all went to ACL.  it was going on for 3 days.  I was excited to see Kaskade, Bright Light Social Hour, Vampire Weekend (!!!), The Cure, Depeshe Mode, and others.  The festival was really different than the other ones I’ve been to.  LOTS of kids and it was really a family oriented place!  I saw a little boy bopping and dancing along to Vampire Weekend.  Super cute.  My friend Brian  from Buffalo was even working the Samsung Booth!  There was no smoking allowed at the park.  There was also not a boat load of drunks.  It was hot but it was really well done!  The  2nd day of the festival it poured right as we left the Cure…There was flash flooding it was so bad.  CRAZY.  I’m in new weather patterns and issues.  No more blizzards ( just flash floods.)  I never knew they were so dangerous.

Due to the flash floods, Sunday at ACL was cancelled.  BOOOO.  I understood though.  I was bummed I was going to miss Phoenix. Instead Kasia suggested we go to the Bills Backer bar at the Rattle inn!  There were tons of Bills fans there.  Although we lost….I had a fun and they had an amazing food truck next store…yum yum pulled pork BBQ sang wich.  If you ever need to find a Bills game in Austin, Rattle inn is your spot.

I’m excited about my future in Austin and see it only going up from this point on. Until next time…

AND IF YOU WERE WONDERING…SOMEONE SPELLED NIAGARA FALLS WRONG. OH CHUY’S!!!

Safe Travels!!!

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As we arrived to Alana’s house outside Austin and walked in her doors, we were greeted by her cute doggies Ziggy and Birdie.  It’s really nice to see Alana and Jer.  I love having Buffalo connections here. It will make it feel like a home away from home .  We can all chat about missing Elmwood and Spot Coffee when we miss it.

I couldn’t help but feel excited and anxious at the same time.  This is real.  My life is changing so much and its for the better.  I had a dream to go to Texas and I’m actually doing it.  It is so bizarre and exciting and scary at the same time.

My mom wanted to see the city a bit so we toured a bit before she was dropped at the airport.  We walked around the capital building ( if you did not know, Austin is the capital of Texas.  Now you know. )  We wandered around Congress and 6th street too.  She really liked the city and I’m glad I could show her what I wanted for so long.  I cant wait to show everyone else what Austin, TX has to offer a young professional : ) It’s a great place with so much potential.

Sadly, it was time to drop my Mom off at the airport.  I’m was sad to see her go but I know I made a great life changing decision.  I’m going to love Austin and my future is here.

Here is some advice if you want something different with your life…

If you’re unhappy with something, change it.  It’s never too late to adjust your life and follow your dreams.  It’s terrifying and scary but just DO IT! At least you tried if it doesn’t work out.

They can drive 80MPH in Texas!?!?

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As we left New Orleans, I realized that our Mother-Daughter Southern road trip adventure was close to the end. She was going to head back to Buffalo in a day.  Its was weird to think that the last link of my family was going to be at least 1700 miles away from me but I knew it was coming.  I had a great trip with her and I will remember it forever : )

Driving through Louisiana was a bit nerve wracking.  Since LA is basically a huge swamp, the highways are all build over raised water! There were probably alligators crawling all over that place.  I don’t even want to think about if a car flew over the divider.

Finally…we reached Texas.  It seems like it took forever.  Driving through Texas was also long and longer and flat.  I was stunned to read that drive 80 MPH in the state.  Does my car even reach 80? It’s an almost 10 year old Ford Taurus.  We stuck with 70 and let people give us dirty looks. The gas stations also had a fun food choices and arranged their beer in a really fabulous way.

After a long 8 hours…we reached the destination point.  We drove from Lake Erie to Austin, TX.  It took us 4 days and a few disagreements but we finally made it.  What a trip!

Illegally Filming Jazz Music…by accident.

( notice the finger wagging…Never even saw the “no video” sign…I swear)