Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
I had a wonderful Christmas. We all piled into our car and embarked on a sojourn to Austin. It was a one and half hour drive from College Station. When it comes to size, Austin is overshadowed by Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio in Texas. However, Austin is known for lot of reasons other than its size. Austin is the second most important area in the United States for the software industry. It is also the seat of power of Texas.
Austin is a lovely city. It is situated on a hill overlooking rivers. These rivers are managed by the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA). The city planners have done a wonderful job in making sure that the city grows around the hill with the hill being the main point of attraction. There are lot of places and facilities in Austin for outdoor activities like trekking, hiking, biking, camping etc. It is the ideal place for people who have a taste for adventure. It is a small town with the facilities provided by a big city. Cost of living in Austin is also very less as compared to any other American city. Austin is also the home of one of the most beloved American heroes - Lance Armstrong. He has done a lot for popularizing the sport of biking in a country obsessed with its motor vehicles.
Austin is the home of the dreaded rivals of the Texas A&M Aggies - the Texas Longhorns. In spite of the fact that Aggies have lost to Longhorns for five years in a row now, I still look forward to the day when we will beat Longhorns again and reclaim our lost glory in American Football. Go Aggies! Whoops! Some of my Indian Aggie friends have dissociated themselves from Aggies because of the ignominy of defeat for the last five years. All I can tell them is not to lose heart and be patient. Good things take time to happen.
Texas Longhorns are going to play USC Trojans on January 3, 2006 in the Rose Bowl. Whole of Austin is waiting with bated breath. In my opinion, it would be quite difficult for them to beat the Trojans. The Trojans have dominated NCAAF for the last three years. They are a great offensive side with Matt Leinart and Reggie Bush. Longhorns have to counter their offense with their defense. I am not sure how good Longhorns are in their defense. Their defense seemed to fold against the Aggies in the last regular season game. They won and stayed undefeated because of some last minute mistakes by the Aggies.
During this visit to Austin, I tried my hand at playing Poker with my friends. It is a wonderful game. Although I lost the first few games, yet, I think, I have managed to gain a decent understanding of the game. It requires lot of concentration as well as continuous calculation of the odds stacked in favor or against. This is the first time I have been enamored by a card game to such an extent. After coming back to the College Station, we purchased a Poker set from Wal-Mart and continued our infatuation with the game.
That is all for now. Its been a wonderful week! The sight of happy old friends is always a joy to behold. Happiness is playing Poker with old friends throughout the night with some wine in your hand.