I have just landed in my new home — Austin, Texas.
A veritable spaceship brought me here. The Pod — my zippy, 16-valve ’87 VW GTI — is still tickin’ after 27 years! DAMN that car is fun. After three days of driving, I am thanking my lucky stars for its trusty and spirited mechanical soul, and especially for getting me here in one piece.
After a fun stay in Albuquerque, we finished the trip with an adrenaline-filled, 80mph, gusty, nighttime chase across the high plains of west Texas; guided and utterly confused in turn, by the robotic Australian drawl of my GPS navigator thingy. Texas, meet Australia… “Howdy Mate!”… “In 100 meters, turn right past that there tumbleweed…” “G’day Cowboy!” Yes, it is a hot new mashup from Hell — use often, and at high speeds!
While I am prone to moving around the world, most of places I’ve lived have been temporary stays; albeit some of them are long-lived, and most of them become colorful, memorable chapters in my life. ‘Home’ (with a capital ‘H’) is a special designation I don’t change much. It is the place I say that I am from, when asked; a place that I have no intention of leaving. It is the place where my guitar, and other significant stuff, lives. It is the place where I would put down roots — a constant that remains, amidst my sometimes shifting location. I have only called a few places Home, which is why my move here carries special significance to me. Obviously calling a place Home, and having it feel like Home are two different things, but this move is that process’ auspicious beginning.
I am often asked this of late — especially by myself.
After six-plus years in the Pacific Northwest, I have decided to move my notion of “Home” from Portland, Oregon, to Austin for several reasons. It is has weather more suited to me than the Pacific Northwest (to say the least). I love sun.
Also, significantly, Austin seems to have a more vibrant technology scene than Portland. That ought to help keep me busy with fun, interesting, and profitable projects, over the long term. Austin has a reputation for being a fun, funky, creative city — my kind of place! Finally, I am at a juncture in life, where I am ready for a change — to settle in somewhere fitting for the long haul. I am in a position to be able to build that change consciously, choosing a place that supports the elements I want in my life. Of course, ‘blank-slate’ beginnings like this come with their challenges, but I am looking toward the long view. Wanderer, nomad and world traveler though I may sometimes be, my goal here is to build a new, solid home base that I will be happy to return to for years to come — Home, with a capital ‘H.’
As with all fond farewells, I miss what I’ve left behind. I miss the cozy, funky vibe of Portland — the last place I called Home. I also miss the hustle and bustle of New York City, where I enjoyed living most of last year. Mostly, though, I miss spending time with the friends and family I’ve left behind. Leaving the familiar, for the unknown, is always a leap of faith. Austin seems to embody so many of the essences I am after, so I have come here to give it a try.
As one door closes, so many others open!
All the best,
PS. If you know any people I might enjoy meeting here in Austin, please do put us in touch! I would really welcome meeting some new friends in these here parts.