Saturday, December 23, 2006

Christmas in San Antonio

It's an unusually cool and rainy day here; a good time to catch up the blog. I'm sitting here in the motorhome, our 3-foot tall Christmas tree surrounded by presents and glowing brightly, holiday shows on the TV, and enjoying a cup of coffee. Brenda's finishing up a marvelous coconut macaroon cheesecake, and the cat is sleeping (big surprise). We're getting close to moving again, but before we do we'd like to share our travels here in San Antonio. As usual, our trips are defined by restaurants; here in San Antonio our favorite for lunch is Schilo's, a downtown deli for over 80 years that is listed in the Mobile guide and voted one of San Antonio's 10 best. It's an old building with old furniture and a great German menu. Brats, wurst, rye bread, and home made pea soup....with homemade root beer; all for under 10 bucks. If you travel to the Rivercenter Mall, look it up, it's right across the street. Another of our favorites is Rudy's Bar-B-Que, a local chain where you order your ribs by the pound. Great stuff, and cheap! In between eating, we managed to visit a few places also. After visiting the Alamo again, we decided to explore another of the "chain of missions" that follow the San Antonio river south. The largest, Mission San Jose, has a great visitor center and has been restored to its original size and condition. Since the perimeter wall is the same size as the Alamo's was, (about a city block) it's easy to see how it would be impossible to defend with less than 300 men.  We thought it interesting that a Catholic mission, still in use, is managed by the US Park Service, a government agency. Also interesting was the granary, a reproduction of the original water-driven mill. The Spanish missionaries and soldiers would not eat corn flour, so the mill only ground wheat for their bread, and the millstones (still in use) were imported from France. So we end up with a stone from France grinding wheat for their enemy the Spanish in a country where everyone eats corn.
Brenda's love of animals always makes the local
zoo a "must see", and the San Antonio zoo is one of the best we've been to. It helped that it was a marvelous day, high 70s and sunny; and with everyone else out shopping we had the place to ourselves.











The highlight of our visit was when a Lory decided that Brenda's hair would make a good nest and decided to make itself at home. It would have been interesting if she could have brought her new "hat" home and let the cat have a look, assuming it could stay awake long enough to notice.
Somehow we're always too busy to see all the sights on our list and have to move on, so after a Christmas Eve dinner (Brenda's making Zele and Knedlicky - Roast pork and potato dumplings for you non-bohemians) with our full-time friends Dennis and Ann Boyce, and a Christmas Day dinner with our friends Tom and Janet Parcenue, we'll be heading west. Thank you all for the holiday wishes, we feel so lucky to have so many friends in so many places. We wish you all the best this year and next, and hope that like us, you can live your dream. Happy Holidays

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