Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Day 2: Maybe being 'uncomfortable' is OK.

Remember the Alamo!

Despite this house and neighbourhood growing on me I did not have a rest-filled sleep last night. I have big plans for tonight though!

Oh, and there's that train whistle. Nice.  It toots at irregular intervals, constantly for at least 45 seconds every hour or so.  Yes, 45 seconds. I know because as I type this I still hear it and I am watching the clock. Yep, still going. . . .

After a very slow coffee I head out by car because I am SO not biking anywhere in this humidity, towards the mission. I am stopped for a train outside of, you guessed it, Whataburger.  This just isn't any old train this is the s.l.o.w. train which eventually becomes the p.a.r.k.e.d train.  Interestingly enough there was an ambulance and firetruck with lights going waiting along with me.  I really hope there was no fire burning or bleeding person because, well, it would not have ended well.

Two pictures into my visit to the first Mission my phone politely informs me that pictures are no longer an option because the memory is full.  Choices. I can continue to walk around without taking pictures - oh, we might as well just stop right there because that is NEVER going to happen. Back in my cupcake car, back down the road past the now familiar Whataburger to the BNB.  Download the pictures on to my computer, delete the pictures off my phone and turn the cupcake car around to return past the burger place to the Mission.  Its now only 11 am. A fine start to the day. I could really use a coffee but this is not exactly Starbucks territory.

I take pictures to my hearts content and watch a 25 minute National Park video on the history of the Spanish Missions in the San Antonio area - this is more like it!

I head uptown to the $5.00 all day parking lot on the edge of downtown that I scoped out the other day and proceed to locate the convention centre, grab my loot and get some lunch. Generally, hotel lobby restaurants are to be avoided, thought of as over-priced with poor food. Not so!  In 2012 Dad and I had a very memorable lunch in just such a hotel lobby overlooking the town square in Amsterdam.  Today, I had a similar experience. Deep chairs, quiet atmosphere, with good food for a fair price. It was just what I needed to regain some energy.

The 'new me' headed off to the River Walk. This is a pretty little canal that twists about the downtown core. A perfect venue for cafes, restaurants and tourist trap stores. You may part with your money to ride a barge around the canals with 20 of your newest friends while the tour guide tries not the ram the barge in front or take out the City Worker barge that is going along fixing up the flower beds. I chose to just walk along for while. It was pleasant. I head back to the BNB to do some work in the late afternoon. On the way back I noticed that street parking just outside my $5.00 lot is free after 6 pm. Noted.

A shower in the late afternoon after a 100% humidity kind of day is a blessing like no other. Enough said.

Back to the downtown core to browse through the venders hall and grab munchies.  They were good munchies - roasted veggies and roasted sliced turkey. Yum!

Now, I am back 'home'.  This neighbourhood is growing on me; however, not so much that I will be sad when Friday comes. I would relocate to a fancy pants downtown hotel in a heart beat if there wasn't a small matter of cost. Money - trying to save money got me into this place. Hmm. . .  I noticed a small community garden and 'little library' a few blocks from here. I passed too quickly to take a picture. And, this morning over coffee on the porch I met the lady who lives at the rear of this house.  She is likely in her late 70's - a long time resident.  We had a very engaging conversation about politics and the state of the neighbourhood.  She is a cat lady.  She went out with a tray sporting an assortment of colourful individual dishes of cat food to bring around to the strays that 'come here when people move on'. While this BNB may not be making me feel super 'comfortable' in terms of the neighbourhood - it is not unsafe - it is just different from what I am used to.

Maybe being 'uncomfortable' for a few days is OK.

I was wondering what they were looking at until their breakfast arrived. 

Yes, coffee is needed here. 

Jet fuel - very appropriately named this morning.

I call this, "Regarding the train and wondering why the firetruck is not finding an alternative route."

The adjoining property looks good; however, upon closer inspection it is clear that this too has been abandoned. Broken windows, open windows. This was about a 2-3 acre property, maybe a former school, fenced up and left . . . this was not an uncommon sight. 

Many little ovens outside of the rooms that line the walls of the court yard. 

I have seen more of these lying down trees.  They are huge!

Pay parking. . . .Do you know what to do?

Chicken Alamo at the Mariott Hotel for the win. That is a big bunch of sliced avocado on top. 

The sun comes out in the afternoon. 

A big oak tree within the Alamo Mission gates, downtown. 

The Alamo closes at 5:30 pm so I will have to drop by again tomorrow to go inside. It is surrounded with buildings and crass tourist traps like Ripley's Believe It Or Not and tacky T-shirt shops across the street. Kinda sad actually. 

OK, the T-shirts were not all bad :). 

My colleagues manning the Study Forge venders booth. My Physics 11 course is run in Study Forge. Rocks!

Keep those hands clapping. . . . 

I am not liking it but being 'uncomfortable' for a few days will be OK. 

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