Yesterday I entered the 7th circle of my own personal hell. It is called . . . The Domain.
Technically, The Domain is “a five-star shopping center with a superior location and exceptional amenities …[that] caters to Austin’s affluent population.”
I went there with M to pick up her laptop from the Apple store. It was so creepy.
Everyone there was completely moneyed up and yet still trying to convey that they were part of a counterculture. The streets are faux stone, the walls are stucco, and everything is painted in “edgy” colors. The worst part? Bad, watered-down jazz is piped through the speakers located on every corner. It permeates the atmosphere and makes you want to get mildly groovy. The feeling of smugness was palpable and stifling. God help me. The worst part is that there is no indication of what city you’re in (as M quite rightly pointed out). It could be any town–which is hard to pull off in a city like Austin. It’s especially nauseating for me, because I’m used to distinctive cities. You can’t be in New Orleans and pretend you’re somewhere else. Same thing with Austin.
Once we were done at the Apple Store (a separate nightmare of its own) we started walking back to the truck. I had been slightly tempted, at first passing, to stop for coffee. But I suddenly wanted nothing more than to please leave NOW NOW NOW get me out of here oh my god I’m going to smack someone. And so we left, thank god, and got coffee elsewhere and witnessed a lightning bolt of biblical proportions that was so close and loud that it raised the hair on my arms and I could smell the ozone. It was fantastic.