Adios, Austin

Austin panorama

I moved to Austin four years ago to grow a company and it was acquired earlier this year.

The skyline has changed a bit since I’ve been here and it’s already very different from four months ago when the picture above was taken.

Thinking about the four years I spent in Austin, here’s what I’ll

Miss:

  • the people. For the most part, they are still laid back and a little bit weird. This is awesome and refreshing, especially when engaging with the service industry.
  • the food. I’m not a foodie, so my favorites include Tacodeli, Home Slice, and Rudy’s. Still surprised that I came to accept buying BBQ at a gas station.
  • the convenience. Austin is small and easy to get around. I only put 6,000 miles on my car a year. The traffic lights go flashing red at night. 10 – 15 minutes to get anywhere unless it’s rush hour.

Gladly leave behind:

  • the allergies. No one tells you that there’s a different type of nature to make you sneeze, cough, and losing hearing in an ear, all year long.
  • the bugs. Scorpions belong in cartoons, not in your sink. Roaches that live in trees and attack from above. Mosquitoes that are everywhere and draw blood like little piranhas. In fact, I just killed one on this airplane.
  • the heat. Although everyone gets used to it after a while, it’s still unpleasant to bake like a chicken tender under a heat lamp every time you walk outside from May through November.

More next week. But for the last week I’m here, I’ll enjoy some breakfast tacos, barbecue, and local brews.

uberX service at SXSW starts today at 5 pm

As an analyst, I’ve always valued the perspective of firsthand experience. So during SXSW in Austin I’ll be an uberX driver.

Uber ATX

As an analyst, I’ve always valued the perspective of firsthand experience. So next week I’ll be an active participant in the collaborative economy during SXSW in Austin: I’ve registered as an uberX driver.

Users get free rides, as Uber doesn’t officially operate in ATX yet. So you might call for an Uber and get me to show you around! Just don’t ask me to drive you to Driftwood or Round Rock.

Service starts at 5pm on Thu 6 Mar and ends at 3pm on Sun 16 Mar. I predict that once people hear the phrase “free rides” there will be much more rider demand than driver supply.

And of course if you need to sign up for Uber, I’d be happy to refer you to sign up: http://uber.com/invite/esu88