I know how I said I would go with the flow during SXSW but I’m revising that idea. Poor planning resulted in confusion and an awkward huddle of friends staring at their phone trying to think of what to do.
My SXSW day didn’t start until 7pm. I headed to downtown Austin with some friends and walked a mile to grab some guest passes and enter contests. When we finally reached the Austin Convention Center, we discovered that was not the location to find guest passes and everyone there were movie badge holders. Everyone looked professional in their suits and platinum passes hanging around there neck while we were just a couple of confused girls wearing yoga pants.
I walked a half mile to reach my friends and then another half mile to reach Pearl Street where Wild Wild West Campus was taking place. WWWC is a film and art festival put on by students where they showed their artwork, movies, and creative projects. Unfortunately when we arrived, the people exiting the building told us it was over and ass they walked away they turned around and said, “but there’s a party at Taos!.” Taos is a cooperative living building that was located another mile away. With our tired feet, we headed north to Taos.
After entering the back entrance and walking down twisted staircases we reached the basement of Taos. It was crowded, really dark, and very loud. Our friends’ bands, Tapes and The Louisiana Purchase, had already played their sets and left so we were stuck there in the dark basement with music so loud it was unrecognizable.
Our luck finally turned around when I get a text about an after-party where both Tapes and The Louisiana Purchase were playing. So we take an Uber (a taxi service for those unfamiliar) and drive to the house party. Tapes had finished so the only band I saw that night was The Louisiana Purchase at the house of the guitarist. Lucky for me, the guitarist is the guy who broke up with me a week earlier.
The Louisiana Purchase played an intimate set and the crowd was full of friends and familiar faces. Their friends knew the band so well they sang along to every song but I only participated when they covered Weezer’s Say It Ain’t So. While the band’s skill was not bad, they sounded like just another garage thrash band.
The night started out fuzzy but I ended up having a fun time by the end of it. With better planning I could have had fun earlier, walked an absurd amount of miles, and avoided the situation where the only band I saw on SXSW Day 1 was that of my ex-boyfriend’s. It was an awkward situation but at the end of the day I made more friends and didn’t spend a dime.
I learned my lesson from this poorly planned day and have plans with my friends tomorrow. In the morning we’ll visit the Game of Thrones exhibit in the morning, a journalist party during the evening, and my friend’s house party to finish off the night. Let's hope day two of SXSW goes smoother.