Austin, Texas: named for Stephen F. Austin, considered to be the ‘Father of Texas’ and the first bionic man. I was lucky enough to have a day to putz around in Austin recently and so I did a little googling to find out what exactly makes Austin tick other than its mild case of Turrets. I did know that Austin is known largely for being the Blue bastion within a perpetually blushing Red state, but I didn’t want to go down that road. One road I did want to go down was 6th Street, known largely for mayhem, collegiate debauchery, and launching up-and-coming artists into the satiatingly saturated and highly self-congratulatory music industry.
Being a transplanted Minnesotan, I decided instead to go on safari and hunt amongst the Texan (George) bushes for that wild, elusive and somewhat dangerously delicious game found predominantly in The South of the United States known simply as Continue reading
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This is the Chena River (pronounced “Chee-na”). It is NOT the Chia River. I know this because the woman in front of me kept yelling this at the person behind her who wouldn’t stop singing “Ch-ch-ch-chena.”
Through no fault of my own, I had some free time in Fairbanks this week. If you’ve ever been to Fairbanks, you know there are exactly five things to do there: 1) Kayak down the Chena River, 2) Canoe down the Chena River, 3) Bike along the Chena River, 4) Take the Riverboat Discovery Tour along the Chena River, or 5) See a movie. Having already done 1, 2, 3 and 5 on past visits, I elected to try out 4 even though I would likely be the only patron who hadn’t consumed a Geritol-laced Ensure for breakfast. So, I set my commemorative Al Roker alarm clock and, after missing the morning sailing, embarked on the afternoon option.
Like all nature tours focused on education and conservation, this one starts and ends in a giant gift shop. Continue reading