Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Brodie Oaks shopping center

We are doing yet more suburban stealth camping, at the above-named shopping center (map), motivated by, you guessed it, proximity to an Olive Garden. Tonight is Louise's last night in town for a few days, and this was her specific dinner request. (Regular readers will know that we have selected boondocking parking lots based on Olive Garden proximity several times in the past.) Google satellite imagery revealed a large yet discreet parking area behind the shopping center, and it did not disappoint. In fact, as a bonus, we are parked behind the defunct anchor store, Mervyn's, which is in the process of being cleaned up for a new tenant, so we did not have to deal with any of those pesky shoppers (although we may awaken to construction workers arriving at 06:30).

The last time we came through Austin, we spent the night in the parking lot of a defunct Wal-Mart (adjacent to a going-concern Sam's Club). We needed to dump our tanks today, so we took advantage of said Wal-Mart's 4" sewer clean-out, a trick-of-the-trade that we used several times while working at Red Cross HQ in Baton Rouge (quartered in -- what else? -- a defunct Wal-Mart). Just reinforcing the notion that "Wal-Mart is our home park." We filled our water tank at the Elks lodge before pulling out this morning.

I neglected to mention in this morning's post, mostly because Louise thought she was going to do so, that we had a great time yesterday at the grand opening of the south Austin location of Dirty Dog Self-Serve Dog Wash and Grooming (not to be confused with the bar of similar name, also in Austin). Louise came across it in the on-line version of the Chronicle, and it was an easy bus ride from our digs at the Elks lodge. Our $5 p/p donation to the EmanciPet* spay-and-neuter charity got us hot dogs, plenty of Lone Star beer on tap, and live music to boot. Many thanks to Dirty Dog owners Blair and Alesha for puttin' on the dog, so to speak.

(* I like the work EmanciPet is doing, and we're happy to donate, but I note that they have fallen, no doubt quite unwittingly, into the trap of misusing the internationally protected red cross symbol. Alas, it is a never-ending and seemingly impossible battle to keep the symbol chaste -- owing, primarily, to confusion caused by the tiny handful of "authorized" pre-1905 trademark holders, such as Johnson&Johnson First Aid products.)

I did, finally, break Friday's huge post into three individual pieces. I did this mostly so that I can send links to either the Red Cross rant or the Lowe's vs. Home Depot rant out in email to specific audiences, as well as back-link them at some future date. However, it also helps make the whole effort less of, umm, well, "blogorrhea," as Louise so eloquently put it while I was typing.

Tomorrow morning I will drop Louise off at the airport, then hunker down at Lowe's (I hope) or back at the Elks for a few days to get some projects done around the house.

1 comment:

  1. Hey guys~ It was great meeting you both and it's been really interesting to see your bus and read about your travels--now THAT'S living in style. Again, safe travels, and if ever in Austin again, stop in and see us!

    Take care~
    Dirty Dog


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