My graduate adviser started his lab in 1992 so the 20th reunion was held in Austin, Texas over Memorial Day weekend. The whole weekend was fantastic. It was amazing to see so many folks that I worked with-it was way more meaningful than a high school reunion would be, not that I have been to any of mine. People are exactly the same as I remember or better. It was so nice to see the great work people are doing now, everything from academic or industrial research, to doctors, lawyers, parents and just interesting folks.
Getting off the plane I saw a man in as shorts suit! It was totally a suit, but shorts instead of long pants-perfect for this weather, which turns out to be hot and sticky. The Fun Bunch arrives in Austin and eats at the Roaring Fork. We sort of planned ahead to see what we might want to eat, but the 'best' places were far away, or hard to get tables. This was the best for us because we walked, they had a table for us, we were able to chat, and even though it was fancy, the toddler in the group was not a problem! We pretty much ate all their specials-green chile stewed pork, huckleberry margaritas, big ass burger-all fantastic. But my favorite was the Mexican street corn. I think I like it that someone cuts the corn off the cob for me :)
Tonia arranged that we would meet up for breakfast at the Central Market, which is a large fancy market (reminded me of Jungle Jim's in Cincinnati) right next to a play area. Brilliant! As we are sitting on the patio as old lab mates come up and there is much *squee*
In the afternoon we meet on campus for a casual lunch and then talks by the alumni. At the end Andy's boys had a very short presentation that was of course adorable and included about 10 seconds of singing.
We had our own area of Abel's on the Lake for our group to hang out and chat which was perfect. I got to talk to all the folks I overlapped with and some of the new one.
More talks in the morning, but the afternoon is free and I am going to Schlitterban!
I had heard about Schlitterbahn from my friend Kyle, a Texas native. And one thing in particular stuck out for me in his description-the water for the park comes from the river. Even in Minnesota (all those lakes) the water parks I have been to use chlorinated pool water that leaves you dried out at the end of the day. Plus a number of reviews call it the best water park in the country. After visiting, I have to agree, this place is amazing and I could easily spend 3 days chillaxing here. We knew we didn't have enough time to do the whole park, so E- and I only went to the 'original Schlitterbahn' figuring the lines would be longer for the newer, fancier rides. Classic Ichiro and Michiko who came with us did check out the new park and said it lived up to expectations-longer lines for the Master Blaster, but well worth it.
Goodbye brunch at the Taco Joint. Oh our Austin friends picked some good eats! I love breakfast. I love Mexican food. And who doesn't love a hole in the wall. The group was much smaller now, but it was the only time we were able to see Sabine.