March 7, 2004: A Visit to the Arboretum
February 21-29, 2004: Our Winter Trip to Florida
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March 4, 2004
A Visit with Greg in Austin


 

I have to be down in Austin for Pervasive for a day or two this week, so I am going to take the opportunity to visit Greg in his new house on 33rd Street in Austin. He was living on Spicewood Springs in what I thought was a very nice house, but now that he does not need to be so near work, he has acceded to the importunings of some of his friends to move closer in.


As you can see from the maps, Greg's new house is south of where the old offices for Data Junction used to be, and much closer in to downtown Austin. Greg is on the north side of 33rd Street; for comparison, Darrell has been living on 12th Street all the time he has been in Austin.

Getting to Greg's house from anywhere in downtown Austin is very easy, and people coming from a long distance have only to come down Mopac (which is Texas Highway 1, and named for the Missouri-Pacific right-of-way on which it was built when the railroad allowed the city to use the land) and get off at 35th Street.

Anyway, getting to Greg's house is easier for all his friends at the Zen Center and at the theater center where he is getting back into amateur acting.



Greg's house is in an older neighborhood, and is the first house on the street to be totally redone. It wasn't cheap to buy (he bought it from the builder), but it is certainly nice outside and inside, as the upcoming movies will attest. It has a nice little back yard and a detached, two-car garage and parking apron. There is a security gate on the driveway which makes the back of the house more private.

Inside, as you will see, it is modern to the max, with widespread use of bamboo flooring, artistic touches everywhere, really great lighting and an ultra-modern kitchen.

Without trying to describe the house in words, I think the best thing to do is to let Greg give us a tour, and I will film each stop on that tour. First off, the front door faces the driveway, not the street, and the porch and facade of the house are done in river rock. As soon as you walk in the entry (movie below), you are looking at an art niche flanked by two narrow closets and a window on the front of the house to your right. Turning left, you enter the living room. On the right-hand side of the living room (movie below) there are lighted art niches in the wall (and more down the hallway to the back of the house), and in the back center of the room are the stairs that go up to the second level.


The Entry

The Right-Hand Side of the Living Room


Main Part of the Living Room

The main part of the living room is furnished with a blend of old and new furniture and his grand piano. You can also see the stairs up to the second level. We'll finish our tour of the first floor before we go up to the second.

Saving the second level for a while, we proceed down the hallway towards the back of the house, and the first door on our right is the guest bedroom (movie below); it is minimally furnished again with a blend of old and new furniture. The room has a vanity inside the room, which can be convenient since the guest bathroom (movie below) is shared with another bedroom.


The Guest Bedroom

The Guest Bathroom


Greg's Office

The guest bathroom connects back with another, smaller room which can either be a bedroom or an office. Greg has chosen to set this smaller room up as his office (movie at right); as you can see, it does not have the in-room vanity, but it does have its own door into the hallway and a door into the connecting bath.

Right across the hallway from the second, small bedroom (as we work our way to the back of the house) is the media room (movie below)- a room which is also just behind the stairway in the living room, and which can also be reached directly from the living room via a second entrance. The media room is also open to the loft above on the second floor and you can see that in the movie of the seating in the media room I've included below:


The Media Room

Seating in the Media Room


The Kitchen

If you continue down the hall you will come to the great room at the back of the house. This ultra-modern, stainless-steel kitchen (movie at left; please ignore the beginning few seconds as we'll return to the master bathroom shortly) is along the wall of the room opposite the media room.

This room, at the back corner of the house, is the informal living room or "family room." My first movie of this room began with a view of the kitchen and ended with Greg explaining the multi-purpose furniture he has purchased for the room. The second has him showing us his speakers and music system for this room, and some of the other furniture that he has acquired for the room. You can watch both of these movies with the players below:


Family Room and Furniture

Explaining the Music System

In the back right corner of the house is the master bedroom. It can be reached directly from the back living area and also from a door that leads out to the back terrace that runs along the outside of the back living area. You can see all these features in the movie I took just inside the master bedroom. The master also has windows out to the backyard, as you can see in the movie of the master bedroom sleeping area. You can watch both these movies with the players below:


Inside the Master Bedroom

Master Bedroom Sleeping Area

The master bath is off the master bedroom, of course. When you walk through the short hall to it, there is a large closet on your left and the commode area (movie player below). There are pocket doors between the commode and the hallway, and a doorway from the commode to the back living area, so, because a small sink has also been put in this small room, it doubles as the powder room. If you continue into the master bath (movie below), you are facing the jacuzzi tub against a beautiful stone wall, with double sinks, one on each side as you enter, and an amazing walk-through-and-behind shower.


The Water Closet Area

The Master Bath


Finally, we return to the front of the house for a tour of the second floor. When we go up the stairway (movie at right), we find some artwork at the top of the stairs and a wonderful sitting/reading area that is, essentially, on a platform over the top of the media room downstairs. Down the second floor hallway (which is directly over the first-floor hallway, is a long line of bookshelves that give quite the "library" feel. This area is really nice, and provides a cozy curl-up space in a house that is otherwise modern and open.

Just down the hall are the computer room (movie below) and, at the end of the hall, a balcony that looks out over the kitchen and the back living area. This is a very nice touch and adds to the openness of the house. We returned to the front of the second floor so that I could make a movie looking down into the living room (player below) as I descended the stairs.


The Computer Room

Looking Down from the Second Level

Although his house is a little modern for my taste, I like it a lot. It's a great house for entertaining (one of the things I suspect Greg will want to do more of now that he will have much more free time). Everything is bright, open and airy; it is not a house one could ever get melancholy in, it would seem. I hope very much that Greg finds it exactly to his liking.



March 7, 2004: A Visit to the Arboretum
February 21-29, 2004: Our Winter Trip to Florida
Return to Index for 2004