September 2, 2013: San Antonio

Today is our big San Antonio day.  We got up and went down and did breakfast in the hotel.  It wasn’t the best breakfast.  It was okay.  The breakfast room was great, very nice with views of the canal.  We ate then headed out for the day to see San Antonio before it got too hot.

Our first stop was The Alamo.  I have never been and Dominica has not been in a long time.  It was too hot still today so with much of the exhibit outside I was dying.  We spent as much time inside as possible but there is only so much to do and the girls were pretty restless – not the kind of thing to keep them entertained at all and you are not even supposed to touch the walls so we had to be really careful.

It was pretty neat getting to actually see such a famous location, though.  Although having been to Europe, it’s a pretty recent structure without much history.  The history was interesting though and we enjoyed it.  I am very glad that I had the opportunity to come down to San Antonio and see it before we move away from Texas.

From there we walked to a Trolley Tour and took that around the city.  We enjoy doing that and wish that Dallas and Houston had them too but, as far as we can tell, they do not.  Austin and San Antonio are much more touristy and both have them and have some really interesting history to learn about.  San Antonio especially is just loaded with unique and interesting history having been a major town in Texas going well back into the Mexican era and even into the New Spain era.

The tour was less than an hour and took us to a few of the missions out on the mission trail which I wanted to see.  That was interesting but it was too hot to get out and check them out and with the girls that would not have been fun anyway.  I had not realized that the missions were in the city but had thought that they were very far out in outlying areas.

After our tour we decided to get off before the very end and went into the San Antonio market, the largest Mexican market outside of Mexico.  It was quite large and very interesting.  A lot of stuff for sale and a lot of good food.  We went to La Tierra, the most famous restaurant in San Antonio, which runs twenty four hours a day and had about an hour wait.  While we were waiting in line I ran to the “Cup o’ Corn” stand and got some fresh grilled corn in a cup for the family to enjoy.  While the girls were eating that I ran into our friend Paola from La Cima coming out of La Tierra.  Very weird to run into someone you know so far from home.  She came out and saw the girls, she hasn’t seen Luciana since she was less than one year old.

Eating at La Tierra was really good.  We cheated on the diets quite a bit but it was a special treat.  Really good food.

We got back on the bus and returned to the end of the tour.  From there we walked to Main Plaza where we had seen lots of really cool fountains while on the tour and spent about an hour with the girls playing in the municipal fountains.  They really loved that.  It was all that we could do to get them to leave when we were done there.  It was too hot and Dominica was starting to feel sick from the heat.  I took a ton of pictures of the kids playing in the fountain.

Back to the hotel for a little bit, we relaxed and watched some A&E silly shows for a few hours during the hottest part of the day waiting for the sun to go down and the crowds to subside before going out to take the canal tours.  The girls have been really anxious to get to take a canal tour.  They want to ride in the boats.

So at eight thirty we went and took the after dark boat tour which was really nice.  It was finally cool enough that we didn’t really sweat (much) and the tour was very enjoyable.  Doing it at night was definitely the right thing.  The boat wasn’t packed, it wasn’t so hot and it is all really pretty at night.

Then we went and got in to a late seating at the Rainforest Cafe that sites on the Riverwalk.  The girls thought that this was one of the best things ever.  They loved it.  Luciana was a little scared of the moving gorillas that were right behind our table but she thought that the whole thing was really cool.  Liesl was enthralled and couldn’t stand the excitement.  I had to take her for a walk around the restaurant so that she could see all of the animals.  She even asked the waiter if there was a crocodile to see.  There was… on the first floor so we had to save that for the way out.

After the Rainforest Cafe it was time to walk back to our hotel.  The girls were very tired after such a long, hot and exciting day.  And it was quite late, well after Luciana’s bed time and nearly Liesl’s.  Definitely time to get to bed.  We got them to bed right away and Dominica and I stayed up for just a little while in the living room.  We have each girl in a different bed.  Luciana by the window and Liesl on the inside.  We each sleep with one of them because if they sleep in the same bed Luciana will never let Liesl fall asleep.  Even with them in two beds we have to put Luciana to bed first so that she falls asleep before Liesl is in the room.

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