Ambling through Austin: Day 3

BookPeople and Fresa’s Mexican Cantina

Yvette Mendoza

The LEAP Ambassadors began waiting in line to enter BookPeople, voted the Best Bookstore in Austin for the past 20 years or so. We explored their array of books, consisting of politics, poetry, and even classic novels–and that was just the first floor!

On our way to the second floor, we noticed a painting of a Blue Dog, by the American Artist George Rodrigue. Interestingly, he did the painting while in the bookstore for a booksigning. Talk about a productive visit!

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Austin TX, ATX, BookPeople, George Rodrigue

Alongside the Blue Dog were pictures of all the authors who have come to do book signings at BookPeople. These authors include former President Bill Clinton, Stephen Harrigan, Meg Gardiner, and Jeff Guinn. In fact, the LEAP Ambassadors had attended some of these!

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Austin TX, ATX, BookPeople, Jeff Guinn

We all enjoyed the bookstore, and we each picked out at least one book from genres that included politics, history, crime, and classics.

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Austin TX, ATX, BookPeople, Jeff Guinn

Following our trip to the bookstore, we visited Austin’s Fresa’s Mexican Cantina. We started with classic appetizers such as queso, guacamole dip, chips, and tortillas. For the main meal, we had specialty tacos: Pulled Achiote Chicken and Agave-Lime Chicken. As for the other entrees, they were Power Bols packed with agave lime chicken, sweet potato, garbanzo beans, and fresh spinach. The waiter was so kind to bring us two homemade sauces, one being jalapeno and the other creamy ranch.

Surprisingly, a side dish of crispy brussels sprouts was seasoned so well with Pasilla Aioli that it made vegetables something you would go out of your way to eat!

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Austin TX, ATX, Fresa's

We topped off our afternoon with a sweet dessert of ice cream in two different flavors, cookies and cream and strawberry guava with a sugar cookie on top, as well as the churros with cajeta.

We left the restaurant full and happy.

Bob Bullock Museum of Texas History

By Morgan Robertson

For our final major stop on the Austin trip, we visited the Bob Bullock Museum. Our learning not only involved the exhibits, but also several tutorials on using a camera.

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Austin TX, ATX, Bob Bullock Museum of Texas History

The four-story museum covers the pre-contact era to the modern times. One of my favorite displays was the contents and items found on a Spanish ship, including 371 cannon shots, 785,000 glass beads (that would have been used for trading), 675 axel heads, and a large collection of dishware.

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Austin TX, ATX, Bob Bullock Museum of Texas History

Of course, Texas history was thrown into the mix with an emphasis on Sam Houston, learning more about the namesake of our University.

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Austin TX, ATX, Bob Bullock Museum of Texas History

It was nice to learn more about this great Texan, particularly as students from SHSU.

Of course, we also learned about Texas’s fight for independence, role in the space program, technological developments, gas and oil, and indigenous wildlife.

Within the museum, the LEAP Ambassadors attended an IMAX documentary called Into America’s Wild. This film highlighted the outdoors, and featured many spectacular scenes in the United States.

It also featured many individuals from underrepresented populations, highlighting how the outdoors has transformed their lives.

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Austin TX, ATX, Bob Bullock Museum of Texas History

The inspirational tone from the documentary left us with a sense of longing to chase adventures and exploration.

SHSU, LEAP Center, Center for Law Engagement And Politics, Austin TX, ATX, Bob Bullock Museum of Texas History

     Finally to conclude the trip, the LEAP Ambassadors stopped at the local bakery, Quacks. Amongst some of the chosen pastries were giant chocolate chip and ginger cookies, raspberry lemon cupcakes, apple crumble pie, butter croissants, and raspberry tea cookies. On the car ride home, LEAP ambassadors shared and conversed over different baked goods, leaving our stomachs and hearts full for the ride home.

https://www.quacksbakery.com/

Author: mikeyawn

Mike Yawn teaches at Sam Houston State University. In the past few years, he has taught courses on Politics & Film, Public Policy, the Presidency, Media & Politics, Congress, Statistics, Research & Writing, Field Research, and Public Opinion. He has published academic papers in the Journal of Politics, Political Behavior, Social Security Quarterly, Film & History, American Politics Review, and contributed a chapter to the textbook Politics and Film. He also contributes columns, news analysis, and news stories to newspapers such as the Houston Chronicle, San Antonio Express News, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Stamford Advocate, Greenwich Time, Huron Daily Tribune, Laredo Morning Times, Beaumont Enterprise, Connecticut Post, and Midland Reporter Telegram. Yawn is also active in his local community, serving on the board of directors of the local YMCA and Friends of the Wynne. Previously, he served on the Huntsville's Promise and Stan Musial World Series Boards of Directors. In 2007-2008, Yawn was one of eight scholars across the nation named as a Carnegie Civic Engagement Scholar by the Carnegie Foundation.

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