20 September 2008

San Antonio- Why You Should Go

Let me start by admitting I'm not an expert on San Antonio.
Having said that, I'm sure of one thing...
If you go to San Antonio and do nothing other than go to the Alamo and the Riverwalk, you'll be glad you took the trouble.

This was my second visit to the Alamo. I first went in 1968 when touring the Alamo included a real-live guide. At that time our guide expressed my first thoughts:
"Most people come and the first thing they say is, 'It's smaller than I expected' ".
It really is.
It's a tiny church. But the ground those that died defending there was much larger... including much of what is now San Antonio shops across "Alamo Street".

This time I forked over $5 and rented an MP3 player to take a self-guided tour, and learned much more than I did back in 1968.
I'm still moved to tears thinking about 189 men, challenged by a 27 year old Col. Travis to consider whether they wanted to ever see their families again... or stay and defend that indefensible church and mission ground. Those 189 men knew there were 6,000 Mexican soldiers at their doorstep... the most advanced and formidable Army in the Western hemisphere, yet they stayed, knowing their fate.
That courageous action not only allowed Texas eventually to be free, it meant the eventual defeat of a great Army that could have had an affect on a fledgling United States of America.
Who amongst us today has that kind of courage?
God Bless them all.

Did you know the Alamo and surrounding grounds were almost bulldozed in the name of "progress"? You can thank a ballsy lady by the name of
Adina de Zavala when you visit the Alamo, because if not for her, there would be no Alamo to visit!

And the Riverwalk-
I first walked the Riverwalk, or what would become today's Riverwalk, when I visited the site of the Hemisfair in San Antonio in 1968.
It will remind you somewhat of Venice, Italy, in that river taxis ply the water, with tour groups learning more about San Antonio, or folks just trying to get from their hotel to a riverside cafe for a great dinner. The Riverwalk is truly a magic place at night, and I cannot describe the atmosphere effectively here.
Let me just say this:

You won't be disappointed.


OlePrairiedog said...

I have always enjoyed my visits to San Antonio. And you are right, there is much more to see and do, but the Riverwalk is my favorite.

John said...

Too bad my in-laws are in SAT. I'd go more often!

Seriously though, there are some other cool old Spanish missions I've seen from the road, too, it would be fun to check them out next time.

I've never done the Riverwalk at night, I bet it would be better than daytime. I had similar impressions of the Alamo.

Welcome home, thanks for lending a hand down there.

PinkPiddyPaws said...

Is it bad that the only things I really remember about San Antonio is that Ozzy Osborne pee'd on the Alamo and I want to AF basic training there so I hated it? Yeah, that's pretty sad I guess.

I should probably go back and give the town another chance. ;)

SloppyPilot said...

I was in and out of SA the past couple of years doing work for the new Toyota plant. Had the fortune of staying at the Marriott on the Rivercenter Mall.

I remember looking out the hotel window and thinking,"The Alamo is in the middle of town?" I had no idea.