Austin


Tech campus turned Mall (still keeps the “DOMAIN” name).

Borders out of business, but Apple store is thriving.

Austin, ranked as most tolerant city in America, saw Chinese Graduate students hang out leisurely on a Sunday afternoon, complete with rocking chairs, very well be made in China.

Welcome to America. Welcome to Starbucks. What’s your name buddy? My name is Buddy.

Howdy Buddy. Wait over that line for your gourmet latte.

It’s the one spot in the middle of Texas where even a native feels out-of-place.

It could have been a page right out of the San Jose playbook.

Silicon Valley meets Silicon Hills. If only they can pull off a Chinese New Year Parade as does annually in San Francisco.

Fifteen years ago, there was little of the town as far as Asian groceries and shops.

Now there exists a large, newly built compound, unmistakably Asian with names like  Pho Saigon, Saigon Baguette, Chinese barbeque. There even is a Chinese bank at the corner, as well as Chinese church at the T section of Braker and Dessau.

The Recession made strange bed fellows, at times, literally (interracial couples seen walking down the street, forcing senior citizens to pause and be puzzled: are we at war with China? The last times Asian girls seen walking with white guys, was during war-time that brought them together were during the Korean and Vietnam Wars.).

So, there it is, a new Domain, complete and transformed from a once overhyped dot.com era.

Yes, Austin is thriving and aggressive to win over California businesses and elsewhere. UT students are benefited from this microcosm of the larger world.

Gaming and software companies are source-coding every minute of the day and night. It’s fitting that 24-hr gyms pick this city to expand.

One thing that was left out in The Rise of the Creative Class. Austin, although ranked as most tolerant city in America, is also home to most allergies in America. I knew it’s too good to be true from the Chamber of Commerce web page. It is now a certified truth that one needs to walk the ground as well as see things from afar. GPS alone can’t quite do the job.  Onward, adapt (euphemism for step back), then onward again.

Starbucks knows it best. Until the McDonald guy catches on. He asked for my name (first time in 36 years). I gave it to him too. My name is Buddy.

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