Saturday, December 12, 2015

San Antonio Stroll

From Travelers World (Carefree RV) Resort, San Antonio, Texas      The six of us (Joyce, Charlie, Pam and Ernie) drove two days on the way to San Antonio from Abbeville, Louisiana. Our stopover at Brookshire, Texas was at a nice midway point. We gathered at our coach in the late afternoon for pizza and salad as we laughed and talked about what we'll do in San Antonio.

A view through the window -- somewhere around Houston.  
While stopped at the Texas Visitors Center, Ernie noticed our brake line was unattached. I guess it had been dragging for quite some time as the brass nozzle was almost worn completely off. There's no fixing this one. We traveled on without brakes on the truck, glad the terrain was flat.

Brake line for the truck.
Fortunately, a replacement was received while we were in San Antonio. 

Wayne and I were last to arrive at the San Antonio campground -- the others were already set up when we pulled in. We had dinner at a local steakhouse that afternoon.

Our campsite. Lots of shade. 

The area surrounding the campground is a bit less than desirable but the campground itself is very nice and comfortable and it convenient to downtown San Antonio -- less than five miles with a metro bus line that stops at the campground entrance.

Charlie and Joyce's coach on the left.
Pam and Ernie's coach on the right. 
So well known for the Alamo and the River Walk, these little known facts about San Antonio are interesting too:

  1. Amazon named it the "most romantic city" based on the number of romantic items shipped to San Antonio. 
  2. Johnny Cash met his first wife (not June Carter) in San Antonio. He carved "Johnny Loves Vivian" on a park bench.... wonder if it's still there? 
  3. The Milam Building was the first air conditioned office building in the country, followed by the first bank, the first hotel and the first Catholic Church. 
  4. The man who invented Gatorade was from San Antonio.  Guess he needed to beat the heat. 
  5. Church's Chicken started here as Church's Fried Chicken To Go...
  6. Mark Twain said there were only four unique cities in America: San Francisco, Boston, New Orleans and San Antonio. 
  7. Lyndon Johnson and Lady Bird were married at St. Mark's Episcopal Church in San Antonio
  8. Theodore Roosevelt recruited his "Rough Riders" at the Mengar Hotel, still in operation. 
  9. Sixty (60%) percent of the days are sunny in San Antonio
  10. Pope John Paul II declared San Antonio "the most Catholic city in the United States".
  11. San Antonio's Tower of the America's is taller than Seattle's Space Needle. 
  12. Pancho Villa planned the 1910 Mexican Revolution at the Buckhorn Saloon. 
  13. Film star Tommy Lee Jones lives in the suburbs. So did Ann B Davis, (Alice) of The Brady Bunch, until her death.
  14. The Alamo has a basement. Thirty million visitors come to San Antonio annually to see the it. The mission... not the basement. 
  15. The bell at St. Mark's Episcopal Church (where the Johnsons married  -- #7 above) is made from the cannons used at the Alamo. 
  16. Texas Longhorn cattle were introduced in 1690 by Texas mission settlers 

River Walk

Our plan is to visit San Antonio for a week and we began with a day trip to the River Walk, of course. Charlie, Joyce, Pam and Ernie took the bus -- Wayne and I, with dogs in tow, took our pick up truck. We parked and rendezvoused mid-morning.

Downtown at the Briscoe Western Art Museum. 
Along our way to the River Walk. 
I liked the statue. 

The tower of the beautiful Bexas County Courthouse 

If ever I knew the origins of San Antonio's River Walk, I forgot it, so I was happy when we ran upon this monument with a plaque attached. It was not easily seen.

The Pajalache Acequia (Ditch)
Constructed early in the 18th century by the Pajalache Indians as a part of their irrigation system, began here in La Villita and ended at Mission Concepcion. The Padres and the Indians travelled in canoes between these places, as the acequia was wide and deep. 
Some of my favorite river walk photos ....

The Tower Life Building in the background. 

One of the more colorful, and most photographed, river walk cafes

After lunch at Cafe Ole along the River Walk, we continued strolling until we came upon a ticket counter for the boat rides. Having the dogs with us, Wayne and I didn't take the boat ride. We walked back to the truck and drove to another lot where we'd park and go the Alamo.

Ernie (standing), Pam, Charlie and Joyce. Ready for their boat tour of San Antonio's River Walk

The Alamo

We had toured The Alamo so we weren't terribly disappointed that we couldn't take Ozzie and Lexie onto the grounds in their stroller. It was a beautiful, warm afternoon and we enjoyed sitting outside, taking pictures and waiting for the others to emerge.  They finally did, but didn't see us and before we could get their attention, they had walked on down the street. We'd catch up with them back at the campground later that day.

The Alamo with the Tower Life Building in the background.

Ozzie on the left, Lexie on the right.  

Golf on the Alamo Trail

One afternoon, Ernie, Pam, Wayne and I played golf at the Riverside Course, part of the Alamo Trail of courses. Another beautiful San Antonio day whether we played well or not.  I didn't, but the others did.

Ernie watching Pam's swing. 

The Wayner 

Ernie hits as Wayne watches. 
We plan to see a few of the local missions and take a drive to Gruene later in our stay. Meanwhile, we're eating out virtually every meal. All this Mexican food seems to be brimming with cheese and loaded with calories...

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