Showing a friend around sometimes results in making some discoveries yourself. Such was the case when I took my Lubbock houseguest to Wimberley recently. I had visited this artsy small town before, but it had been a few years. We wandered around the square, poking into galleries and shops and soaking up the relaxed vibe. I was surprised how easy it was to get into a vacation mode, just by getting out of the city (Austin) and going to a nearby town.
If you're in the Wimberley area, I recommend taking time to go to Wimberley Glassworks, which features glass-blowing demonstrations Thursday through Monday. We also enjoyed browsing at River House, where my friend found gifts for everyone on her list, and at Moon Dance Arts, the studio/gallery of metalsmiths Kathy and Gary Arnold. I didn't buy any jewelry from the Arnolds this time, but after seeing some of their unusual designs and hearing them talk about their work, I'll definitely keep their shop in mind for special occasions.
We opted not to eat in Wimberley, we'd arrived late and by the time we finished shopping, we figured most of the restaurants in town would be overflowing, but we heard lots of recommendations for Juan Henry's, a Mexican-food place not far from the square. We'll try it another time. Instead, we ended the day with a scenic detour along River Road before heading back to Austin. My friend saw something more of the Hill Country, and I discovered the refreshing possibilities of a half-day getaway.