The time has come to say goodbye to Texas and hello to Louisiana! Here are photos and captions from Austin, TX to the Louisiana border. It’s sad and exciting to be leaving Texas.
Sad because I keep meeting such wonderful, supportive people to whom I must say ‘goodbye’.
Sad because there were so many people in Texas who we’ve lost due to TBLG related hate. (More vigil videos from San Antonio and Austin will be uploaded soon.)
Sad because I’m now just about at the halfway mark in this 6,000 mile trek.
Exciting because after about five months of being in Texas I’m finally in a new state.
Exciting because things are getting greener and wetter – both things I’ve missed.
Exciting because I’m now just about at the halfway mark in this 6,000 mile trek.
Enjoy! And as always – thank you everyone who helps keep me walking!
Fashions in South Austin
A cool costume shop in South Austin.
On the costume shop, here we see Austin's slogan.
Yes, it's supposed to look like an erect penis. Love Austin!
Water fountain at Spider House Cafe.
Vince Pierce took me to Toy Joy, a great novelty shop near the University of Texas campus. I saw this there and felt I could relate.
Vince looking all hipster at Toy Joy.
Debbie and Tony Osborn from San Antonio came over to Austin and walked out of the city with me. They are so sweet!
Another photo of the Osborn's.
Cool building we passed that has faux entry way painted on the side of it.
We walked by Nydia Cabrera's house (one of my hosts) so I could pick up some clothes I forgot when I left her house. Good thing she lived right along the walk route! It was great seeing her again too!
Debbie was trying to figure out what kind of oak tree this was. The tree was near Nydia's house.
Hard to see, but a bunch of birds packed close together on the power lines.
Debbie took this photo of me pointing in the direction I'm headed.
After walking, we saw this bike bar thing. These folks were so drunk! Kind of scary!
The pair of shoes the Osborn's, David Cresap and Jacob Young helped me get. The name on the shoes is that of a young gay man who was bullied throughout his life for being gay. EricJames took his life in part due to the hate he endured.
The other shoe.
The bottom of the new shoes. Nice and fresh (not for long).
The old shoes. (I think this was like the tenth or so pair I've had since starting the walk.)
The Osborn's took Vince and I out to eat. Here we inhale the chocolate volcano/ice cream thing on the dessert menu. Mmmmmmm!
Saying goodbye to Vince as he drops me off to FINALLY finish walking out of Austin.
Cool sculptures for sail on the road heading out of town.
I came upon this cool family cemetery on Hwy 71.
I love this! Mini donkeys next to an Obama sign.
Annette Spanhel picked me up and...brought me back into Austin. Wait - I thought I was leaving this city?
Brian Zabcik and I went to Vince's show. Vince is in Noise Revival Orchestra. Vince is to the right playing harp.
The iconic Beauty Ballroom image that adorns the venue. (This is where Vince performed.)
Brian hosted me for like five nights. (After Vince hosted me for something like a week and a half!) Here, at Brian's he has some stickers from his days in ActUP NYC. These are historic and signify a pandemic struggle we still haven't won.
Crossing the Colorado River (not the one you're thinking of) as I walk into Bastrop, TX.
Cool tree as I was walking into Bastrop.
Old building in Bastrop.
Downtown Bastrop. So cute!
Check out this hair salon.
Close up of the sign for the salon.
Past Bastrop I entered the Lost Pines area, which suffered a huge fire this past summer.
A live pine tree right next to all dead ones. And then there's the fresh GREEN grass!
The fire damage extended for several miles.
Behind me after walking past a few miles of the charred remains.
Lots of buildings and homes burned down.
Beautiful wildflowers taking over another small cemetery I passed by.
One of the last rock formations I'll see for quite a while since I'm getting closer to sea level.
The next town past Bastrop.
The sunset as I walked into Smithville, TX.
The Colorado River again as I walked into Smithville.
Smithville has a quaint downtown area.
Brian in front of his FAVORITE Smithville establishment. hehehe. Brian was so great getting me off the road at night and bringing me back to the walk route! He did this three or four times!
Brian walked with me as I left Smithville. PS Brian is one of my activist mentors. It was awesome getting time to see him during my stint in Austin!
A passerby stopped and talked with me two days in a row. She also gave me a donation.
I loved this! Best business advertisement ever!
Evan, my host in La Grange and I as he dropped me off to get back to walkin'.
Bye bye La Grange, TX.
Chris Brombacher, Shelley Rice, Cidette and me. They saw me while driving to Austin and on their way back the next way towards Houston, they stopped to talk with me.
A few miles later, I see this box with my name on it...
It turns out, Shelley, Chris and Cidette left the box with supportive messages, a rose and an American flag. It was so uplifting!
I passed this church and thought - 'Seriously?'
Gay Hill Baptist Church from a distance.
Do I really need a caption to this one?
Goats acting all shy when I went to take their picture.
Texting and taking a photo of the shirt Duane Quintana gave me after walking with me for over a week in Idaho last summer. TOY Duane!
Walking on I-10. UGH!
My host, Johnny DeLeon, dropping me off back on the walk route.
Precarious-looking way to remove material from train cars.
Texas will put that damn star on anything!
OK, so this was just part of the flashing message, but I just HAD to capture this!
Of all the hand-made memorials I've seen while walking (and I've seen a lot) this one has been the most eye-catching.
OMG! I made it! Here we go, walking through the 4th largest city in the USA!
Reflection in building. That's I-10 in the background.
Did you know ExxonMobil is one of the world's leading heterosexist companies? They hate TBLG people. Just FYI.
Nicole & Johnny DeLeon, and I as they dropped me off back to walkin'.
THIS is why you don't text and walk at the same time. While texting one of my hosts (Kevin Taylor) I stepped in this dead, squishy rabbit.
This sign (Zoe's Kitchen) made me think of one of my mentors, Zoe Nicholson.
Cool place I walked by.
Shelley Rice and her family opened their home to me. Cidette was so great. She made Welcome Signs to make me feel comfortable upon my arrival.
Thanks to Billy Bradford, I was able to go up to Dallas to perform When People Lead. My host there, Armando Portillo took me to the St. Patrick's parade the day before I performed.
Performing When People Lead in Denton (just north of Dallas).
Chris Brombacher and me in Galveston, TX.
Shelley Rice, Chris Brombacher and me.
William Fu walked with me one day through Houston. Here we are in front of a Whole Foods. FREE SAMPLES! HEEEEY!
Downtown Houston in the distance.
William Fu and Johnny Hooks at the vigil we held in Houston for people who have been murdered or committed suicide based on TBLG related hate.
Candles we left at the Montrose Remembrance Garden (where we did the vigil. Victims remembered included: Unknown victim, Julia Carrizales, Brandi Houston, Bibi Barajas, Michael Charles Hurd, Cinnamon (Kendrick), Christina Smith, Maribelle Reyes, Myra Chanel Ical, Aaron Scheerhoorn, and Paul Broussard.
Kevin, Charles and me. Charles and his husband Mike met me while I was walking. Charles brought me back to the walk route. Also he and Mike helped pay for the SPOT emergency device I needed.
Welcome to Pasadena...Texas. Home of toxic water, refining of all kinds of toxic oil-based substances, and high cancer rates.
Cool closed down theatre in Pasadena.
Back on I-!0 UGH!!!
FINALLY I made it to Gulf of Mexico waters!
I think it's time for a new pair of shoes.
Yay! New shoes.
My host in Baytown, Virginia and me.
One of the best nonsensical signs I've seen yet!
This is great news since I grew up in churches that told me I was going to burn in a fiery like because I am gay.
Some oily spill at a gas station.
Where the oily mess seemed to be coming from.
All kinds of wildflowers around here.
Crazy wet day!
I love these old cemeteries!
My hosts, Janice and Steven Gammill and their dog with me outside their sail boat where I slept for the evening. This is the second sail boat I've slept on during this walk.
Their dog jumps on and off of the boat with ease!
I think this is where Steven took me back to the walk route.
Grace Mathis, John Roberts, Ziggy and me in John's amazing - AMAZING apartment.
John posing outside his building.
Folks, let me introduce you to The Mildred in Beaumont, TX.
The rooftop patio at The Mildred. The Mildred was built in the early 1900s when Beaumont first became an oil boom town.
John has an antique and rare book store, Book Bazaar, right next door to The Mildred.
John at work. Ziggy in waiting.
John was so put out by helping me out as much as he did.
Lots of water everywhere now.
What a waste of energy. You can't see it, but there is a flame coming out of this thing.
The famous (or infamous) Pig Stand - where Texas Toast is said to have been invented.
John and Ziggy just chilling.
People told me this town may be unsafe for me to walk through with my demand for equality. Great - that means to me I SHOULD walk through it.
A little bit? Try a lot!
In John's bookstore he had a photo book of small Texas towns. Happy, TX was it it. I walked through Happy!
That's one dog I'm glad is on a chain, but it would be nice if the chain wasn't so big.
HELLO LOUISIANA!!! WAHOOO! I CAN'T BELIEVE I FINALLY MADE IT ACROSS TEXAS!!!!!!