Barton Springs Pool is the kind of facility you see only in a well-oiled community with a lot of foresight. Honestly, in DC, Barton Creek and Springs would be filled with rotting fish and wind-swept Styrofoam food containers, instead of early-morning swimmers and environmentally sensitive lizards.
A creek runs down through the Austin Greenbelt - a 7-mile snake of forest, water, and sadly-unexplored-by-me trails that runs from the hill country to the west of the city, underneath most of the major highways... - to abut the Town Lake river. A good number of decades ago the creek was dammed just downstream of the spring that feeds it to create a mostly au natural swimming pool. Probably 300 yards long, with 200 yards at a swimmable depth or deeper, some of the bottom is cemented and the rest is aquaculture growth that presumably gets a tad bit out of control during the summer, when it must be like flying a small single-prop plane through sky-scrapers. The spring keeps the water a steady 68 degrees year-round and the stadium lighting permits open water swimming of 400 yard laps from 5 am to 10 pm. The shallow up-stream portion and diving well keep the kids more than entertained.
From environmentally sensitive lizards to dry-rubbed beef...
TacoDeli!! It took me three weeks to get here, but man, was it worth the wait. Although the thought of all those lost potential meals is sad :(
Left to right, Cowboy, Chicken Fundito, Beef Fundito. Don't ask me what Fundito is. For all I know it means "delicious." Or more likely: "not for vegetarians." I opted out of the chips and queso so I could opt into my race kit. Next time.
And finally, Chuy's for dinner with My Gracious Host and The Modest Runner. Between these two meals I consumed more corn tortillas in one day that the entire previous year, but "hand-made in Texas" recommends their consumption more than "purchased in aisle 7 at Safeway."
But then again Austin has many things to recommend it. Next time.