Tuesday, May 5, 2015

San Antonio Revisited


Braunig Lake RV Resort
13550 Donop Rd
Elmendorf, TX 78112 (San Antonio suburb)
GPS: 29.285599, -98.394054

Braunig Lake RV Resort, 13550 Donop Rd, Elmendorf, TX 78112, GPS: 29.285599, -98.394054


Today was a planned tourist day. For both of us it has been over 50 years since we were part of the San Antonio "Sea of Blue". That is Air Force recruits at Lackland AFB. San Antonio has changed a lot since that time, as have we, plus as recruits we didn't get to see much of the town anyway.

Our first stop was breakfast. Our usual question is "Where do the locals eat?" To that the RV Park manager sent us to the Family Mexican Restaurant not far from the park.

Family Mexican Restaurant, 14180 Hwy181 South, San Antonio, TX 78223, GPS: 29.280447, -98.332653


A roadside hangout fixing up traditional Mexican favorites in down-to-earth environs


For breakfast, I had Migas – Diced corn tortillas, mixed with eggs, onions, tomatoes, hot peppers, and cheese. Served with potatoes, beans, tortillas.

Migas


Michelle had Chorizo & Egg. That is a favorite of our friend Jim Leibold, so we thought of him as she enjoyed it. How do you toast someone at breakfast?

Chorizo & Egg


Our first tourist stop of the day was the Texas Air Museum. This is a Harvest Host site and we had intended to overnight there. Even though that didn't work out, we still wanted to see the place. We spent a couple hours looking through exhibits and memorabilia from the early days of military aviation. Since San Antonio was central to Army Air Corps and early Air Force history, they have a lot of stuff donated by retirees and descendants who had selected San Antonio as their retirement location.

Texas Air Museum, 1234 99th St, San Antonio TX 78214, GPS: 29.340199, -98.475836


A military aviation history buff could spend a couple days prowling through here. While we visited, we met Ked and Lee, two of the volunteer caretakers, and enjoyed conversation about old airplanes and the old Air Force.

Alas however, this museum desperately needs some tender loving care and a major infusion of cash to make it a real tourist attraction. Good luck to them.

The biggest attraction in downtown San Antonio is the River Walk, so we had to go there. Way back when, it was a couple Mexican restaurants on a dirty river. Years of hard work and a lot of money have made it into the centerpiece of downtown, maybe more that the Alamo.

Getting there involved big city driving and parking. Taking our truck downtown brought back not so fond memories of times and places past. However we made it and parked in the Market Street Garage.

The best way to see the River Walk is to take the boat ride, so we did. A fleet of tourist boats is operated by Rio San Antonio. There are numerous places to buy tickets ($6 per person) and board the boats. The tour lasts about 45 minutes.

See the San Antonio River Walk by boat


The River Walk is all restaurants, sidewalk cafes, and upscale shops. It is easily accessible from just about every street in downtown by descending a well marked flight of stairs.

Selecting a place for dinner was tough; there are so many choices. We finally settled on Landry's Seafood. It was just a short walk from where we had gotten on and off the tour boat.

Landry's Seafood, 517 N Presa St, San Antonio, TX 78205, GPS: 29.425833, -98.488845


Memories. Are humans the only creatures with memories? Our military years are so far back they blend with childhood. Seeing the uniforms we wore displayed on manikins in a museum is not a comforting sight. In my post military professional life, I had a full wardrobe of suits, business shirts, shoes, and a large collection of neckties. I left the house every day well dressed and was quite at ease going into expensive restaurants and ordering from complicated menus. All of that is behind. We roam the country in our RV and my wardrobe is shorts, jeans, and T–shirts. The most formal I can do now is a golf shirt and slacks. Going into Landry's where they had cloth tablecloths and napkins was uncomfortable. Do I miss the past? Sometimes. Would I go back? No. Life is a one way street and I think it is best that way.