July 30, 2006

I loved it in Austin
I wanted to stay
Cheap rent and Lone Star Beer
That place is great.
-- The Dead Milkmen, from the song Six Days

On Friday I took my first trip to Austin, Texas to see Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, also know as The Yarn Harlot. She was in Austin for a booksigning, and lots of Texas knitters make the trek to Austin.

Stephanie is only like the most famous knitter in the world, so I feel like I've had my brush-with-greatness dose for the year.
Proof that I was actually in the state capitol.

I was lucky enough to have Julia as my lovely tourguide. She knows Austin like the back of her hand.
There is a huge difference between Houston and Austin. (Everyone from Texas is yelling "DUH" right now. But remember, I'm a new to Texas.) Austin is a lot like Seattle, and so it felt really familiar to me.

What a polite bit of street art. I am fine, thanks for asking!
For my first dinner in this fair city, I was taken to Threadgills...
...for southern food. Seriously. Like so southern that macaroni and cheese is considered a vegetable here. I tried a couple of new things including fried green tomatoes and fried okra.

I was here at dinner with Julia, Christine, and 'Katy-Without-a-Blog'.
After dinner, we walked out to the Colorado River in downtown Austin to watch the famous Austin bats emerge from under the bridge. No good photos of this, as bats fly at night, they are dark animals, and they are quick. (And they are stinky. The kind of stink that makes you cover your face with your hands when it hits you.)

Here's a cool photo of Julia on the bridge.
Jump to the next day. We got up early and headed out to the church to see the Yarn Harlot. (Allow me to clear up any possible confusion...we were at a church because it was a venue close to the yarn shop that sponsored this booksigning, not because seeing the Yarn Harlot is a religious experience. But it was close.) Here are a few of us anxiously waiting in the pews.

Left to right: Julia, Kristen, Katy, and Christine.

If I'm not mistaken, each one of us is working on a handknit sock.
I didn't drive out with my Houston friends (so I could spend time with Julia), but I certainly saw them in Austin. Sorry about the blurry was really silly of me to only take one photo and bank on the fact that it would come out well.

Front row: Jennifer, Amy, Susan. Back row: Jet, Kelly.
Here is Stephanie, a.k.a. The Yarn Harlot, taking a photo of her sock + the audience. (She always does this.)

Even with a crazy-quick tour schedule, she was super funny and animated and it was such a treat to watch her.
After her time in front of the microphone, we each had a chance for a photo/booksigning with The Harlot.

Christine did a good job taking this photo for me, but I never look good when the temperature in any given place is over 98 degrees.

So I'm verypink, verysweaty, with veryflat hair. Not verycute!
Here is a photo of Stephanie taking a photo of our tattoos. (Julia and I met because of tattoos and blogs. If you don't know the story of the tattoos, it's all documented here.)
But the Yarn Harlot was only half the fun!

Several of us (mostly bloggers) met up for lunch after the booksigning. It was so much fun to meet all of these women that I felt like I already knew through their blogs! I'm going to do my best to get a complete list are some of the women I met (who I haven't already linked to): Caro, Abbe, Tina, Sarah, and I met Alicia just long enough to say that we liked each other's sunglasses.

It's a shame, but there were several women from San Antonio who I never had a chance to meet.It was SO fun. Thanks again, Christine, for arranging this.
Austin may be artsy and bohemian, but it's still Texas.
While I was in Austin, Chris and the dogs stayed in Houston, got drunk, and passed out on the furniture.

Nah. They did fine without me.

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