Sunday, November 06, 2005

San Antonio Tourists

It looks like we'll be heading west and leaving Austin sometime this week - so this weekend was a deadline for doing any 'tourist' stuff. Probably the biggest tourist attraction in Texas, The Alamo, is in San Antonio - about an hour and a half away. And, I've been wanting to see the Riverwalk, also in San Antonio. It was pretty easy to find the Alamo - just follow the crowds. Yep, it looks just like it's pictures! And, there's a pretty courtyard too. For those of you who don't know, or have forgotten (like me) the story of the Alamo - it is not the scene of victory. It is the scene of a devastating defeat for the Texas revolution. Every one of the nearly 200 'defenders' lost their lives against Santa Ana's Mexican army. I put 'defenders' in quotes because they weren't all army - many of them were volunteers. They fought enormous odds, taking 600 of Santa Ana's men with them. It may have remained a defeat but for the fact that Santa Ana allowed the slaves, women and children go free to tell the tale. They told the story of these 200 brave men, including the likes of Davy Crockett and Jim Bowie, fighting for freedom against 4 - 5,000 Mexican army forces. The story provided inspiration for those who followed to win their revolution with the cry, "Remember the Alamo". Ok, on to the fun stuff - the Riverwalk. Basically, it's one big party place and mall. It is really pretty though. I've wanted to see Riverwalk for years because, when Fort Lauderdale decided to develop it's downtown with a riverwalk, it was supposed to emulate San Antonio. I am mostly familiar with Fort Lauderdale's river area by being a boater. San Antonio's Riverwalk is much different. The river is not a navigable waterway. But, they do have a little boat tour - it takes about a half hour and you get the overview of the area. One of the things our tour guide told us was where to get the best Margarita. Hey, you don't have to tell us twice! And, speak of the devil! There's our tourguide now. In a way, the Riverwalk reminds me of Atlanta's underground. It's kinda hard to find because it's at a lower level than the rest of the city. There's stairways to get up and down from the river-level to the street-level. Then there's the upper level with all the high-rises! Did you know that San Antonio is the 7th largest city in the country?!

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