For a change, Wednesday started slowly. With our ultimate destination of Austin only 90 minutes away, we spent the morning looking around Fredericksburg.
As I said last time, we had arrived in Fredericksburg quite late the previous evening. The town had already been sleepy and quiet, although the twinkling Christmas lights had still been there to welcome us. (Some people will say it’s much too early for Christmas lights, but I like them!)
Wednesday morning was a completely different story. The streets buzzed with people out and about, enjoying the autumn sun, doing a little shopping and perhaps – like us – grabbing a late breakfast or early lunch.
Fredericksburg’s Main Street is a slightly odd (but in a good way) mixture of the Wild West and Germany. Most of the buildings are what you would expect in this part of the States, with brick fronts and wide, permanent, wooden awnings covering the pavements (or sidewalks, as they say here). Yet everywhere you look are signs written in German and restaurants offering traditional German cooking.
In an area settled by German immigrants, some names from the old country (like Fredericksburg itself) are bound to stick. But the town seems to have held on to the German roots of its founders far more than most other places of similar origin in North America… at least the ones I’ve visited. The funny thing is that one local told us that most Fredericksburg residents don’t actually speak German, despite it being all around them!
Finally, we headed off to Austin, where we spent the rest of Wednesday, and all of yesterday, exploring the city. Like in Fredericksburg, we’ve found the majority of the local people to be really friendly and welcoming. (Although a few have shown in no uncertain terms that they’re not happy the Formula 1 circus has come to town, which is a shame.)
During our tour of the city, we also completed a particularly famous geocache (in caching circles), called The Necropolis of Britannia Manor III, which most geocachers would love to have the opportunity to do (more about this in a future blog).
But today the main event of the whole trip finally begins. And I can’t wait for my first view of the Circuit of the Americas this morning, and to hear the roar of Formula 1 engines again!!!