ROAD TRIP: PART THREE
Grade school in Texas is filled with stories of Texas Independence and "Texas History" is a required course in junior high. Most everything you've ever heard about us Texans is true, and its instilled at a very early age. The first time I saw the greatest landmark of our history however, was Basic Training Graduation back in 1990. Every single USAF enlisted member goes through Basic Training at Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas - home of the Alamo. (And you're going to need to click that image - its magnificent when its...larger). My folks came down for Graduation bringing with them my buddy who retired this past weekend - he was three months behind me in getting a slot for Basic - and this is the first time I'd been back. Fitting, really.
This has all happened before and it will all happen again.
Wanting to escape the nearly month-long oppression of 100+ degree days of Dallas, but scared stiff of the humidity which comes in the Southern part of Texas I begged my friend to lie to me and tell me it was cooler. He did such a good job that I believed him! Sadly, it wasn't to be. I was dismayed by how "wet" the heat was while I was there. Still and all, the Alamo ought to be photographed in full Texas sun, and in that regard, I wasn't disappointed! Illuminated as it should be.
Remember the Alamo!
Later that night, I volunteered to "take the hit for the team" and designate myself as driver during the pub crawl, which afforded me the opportunity to photograph the famous Paseo del Río or San Antonio River Walk...at night. We arrived on the scene - seven of us - around 2130 and while my brood "closed down" the bars on the strip, I hovered around with my tripod taking night shots. In this picture, you'll see a series of tri-level sub-subterranean interconnected edifices rising into the streets much like Wookie Village. This picture was taken six minutes past midnight with a 15-second exposure at f/3.2 (you'll need to click the thumbnail to see the entire thing):
I miss H.E.B. Its a South Texas supermarket. With an impressive selection of beer and the BEST TORTILLAS I'VE EVER HAD, ANYWHERE (not to mention they sell Texas Olive Ranch Mesquite-Smoked Olive Oil) I made as many trips there as I could. What a great culture. What great people. With so much to see and do in this fine town, boredom never came. Its vast tourist-friendly-yet-small-town-feel was very welcoming and set me right at ease no matter where I went.
Amarillo by morning, up from San Antone...
San Antonio is larger than Dallas, but not as formidable as the entire DFW Metroplex. It is indeed a massive city. The humidity aside, I sure enjoyed the sheer number of taquerias in the area - something the more Southern parts of Texas excel at. Its been many years since I've lived in South/West Texas, and while I'm comfortable in maintaining my North Texas suburban lifestyle, I can't wait for my next trip to San Antone!