My Year of “Firsts”

2021 was a new chapter for me. I did so many things and achieved much more than I ever knew was even possible for me back in 2020. So, here’s my list of “firsts” that I’ve done in 2021. Enjoy!

  1. First time trying kimchi fries at Chi-lantro (Korean Mexican fusion cuisine)
  2. First time in an actual club (not really an accomplishment but it was fun lol
  3. First time visiting the boardwalk in Austin (a long pathway over Lady Bird Lake, where you can get a breathtaking view of the Austin skyline)
  4. First legal drink that I purchased after turning 21 (at Chuy’s which was Day 2 of my birthday weekend)
  5. First time ordering drinks at a BAR after turning 21 at Buckshots (ok maybe these aren’t really accomplishments but I’m including them because they were fun times)
  6. And I have a whole list of new food places that I’ve tried here they are:
    1. Mandola’s Italian Kitchen (pretty solid Italian food, I ordered the Eggplant Parmigiana)
    2. Jeni’s Ice Cream at the Domain (one of the best ice cream places that I’ve tried, has a bunch of unique flavors too!)
    3. Joi Asian Bistro at the Domain (get the tofu steamed buns, reminded me of the Disney short film “Bao”)
    4. Tumble 22 (Nashville Hot Chicken- I highly recommend the lil hot sandwich with a side of dirty mac and cheese)
    5. Snooze AM Eatery (the BEST breakfast place, I got the OMG French Toast)
    6. CAVA (the Mediterranean equivalent of Chipotle, very healthy and lots of options- I usually get a bowl with half lentils and half rice!)
    7. Blue Corn Harvest Grill (a friend introduced me to this, it’s all organic and farm fresh Mexican food! very healthy and delicious, lots of vegetarian options as well)
    8. Andy’s Frozen Custard (it’s like ice cream, but way creamier- I like the butter pecan concrete a lot!)
    9. Scoope & Score Ice Cream (I got the birthday cake flavor, solid ice cream place would rate it an 8/10)
    10. Manoli’s dessert bar (a cute little dessert truck in Downtown ATX, has items like mango ice cream, tiramisu cake, popsicles, and more!)
    11. Rainey street food trucks (I don’t remember the exact names but we had momo’s, crepes, and ice cream, and they were 10/10)
    12. North Italia at the Domain (9/10 Italian food, I usually get the chicken pesto pasta)
    13. Voodoo Doughnut (finally tried this iconic place, has lots of interestingly themed donuts, I got the Voodoo doll doughnut, which has rasberry jelly filling, 10/10)
    14. Mozart’s Coffee Roasters (I’m not sure why it took me this long to try this place but finally went! amazing views and solid coffee)
    15. Veracruz Tacos at the Line Hotel (the most delicious tacos that I’ve ever had- definitely beat Velvet Taco, Torchy’s Tacos, and Tacodeli)
  7. ^^ k that was an exceedingly lost list, as you can probably tell, this year I ate GOOD. anyways, back to my list
  8. First time KAYAKING. This was another one of those things that made me wonder how it took me this long to try an activity that was an Austinite essential. You can rent a kayak for $20/hour and get a good arm/leg workout in Lady Bird Lake. If you go around evening time you can catch breathtaking sunset views and make you realize how beautiful the Earth really is. Check out my Instagram @audheya6 for a visual
  9. First time exploring Las Vegas as an adult!! We went inside all of the hotels, casinos, the Stratosphere, and the largest ferris wheel in the world!!
  10. First time watching Eminem’s 8 mile- very inspirational movie with a great soundtrack
  11. First time recording my own music in an ACTUAL recording studio- one of the nicest friends I have surprised me on Day 4 of my birthday weekend where I got to sing in a mic and have professional music done (private message me and I can send them to you if you’re interested)
  12. First time going to MIAMI. I’ve been to Florida many times before- Orlando and Panama City Beach but Miami was something else. The nightlife, the diversity, the culture, the food, the beaches were nothing like no other. We tried Cuban food at Calle Ocho, had Italian at Espanola Way, went to Everglades National Park and rode an airboat in the swamp, drove to Key West and swam in the clearest ocean water, went on a tour of millionaire’s homes in downtown Miami, went to Miami design district, rented bikes and rode around all of South Beach!
  13. First internship at Salesforce! (great company with great company culture and work-life balance)
  14. First time re-visiting Westwood High School with my best friend (it’s a pretty surreal experience to visit your old high school for the first time you graduated, the doors were unlocked for some reason and so we just explored around the building reminiscing about all of the fun times that we had there)
  15. First time trying different rooftop restaurants in Austin (P6 at the Line Hotel, The Edge Rooftop in JW Marriot)
  16. First time buying Chanel perfume (this was little bit of a splurge but 10/10 worth it, I think perfume is a great investment and this thing will you make feel FRESH)
  17. First time getting a second ear piercing! (pretty self-explanatory)
  18. First time having a social media job! (two actually- I worked for Riddle & Bloom doing marketing for Amazon, as well as GIST, a San-Francisco-based startup)
  19. First time seeing the Grand Canyon (I was going to include this in the Vegas line since it was during the same trip but I figured this needed a line of it’s own). We went to the skywalk in Grand Canyon West and it was just full of the most beautiful views that you can possibly imagine. 10/10 recommend going if you haven’t already.
  20. First time at City Line in Dallas (nice shopping/eating place that’s not that far from UTD)
  21. First time at Laguna Gloria Contemporary Art Museum (beautiful outdoor sculptures and Italian-themed architecture with GREAT photo-ops)
  22. And probably one of the biggest acccomplishments for me, but I graduate undergrad in 3 years!!!

It’s only October, and I plan on doing so much more this coming fall/winter- travelling, job interviews, preparing for grad school, and more. I can’t wait for the journey ahead.


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