Monday, July 28, 2014

Aloha to San Antonio - Rivercruise and Riverwalk

On Tuesday morning, I met PJ from The Romance Dish (link) for the Rivercruise.  I found her chatting with Elizabeth Essex (right) about challenging places to record creative thoughts, including the shower.  Elizabeth recommended "aqua notes" from Amazon (link).  

Our captain offered a detailed tour of the San Antonio River with a side of humor.  

Following our Rivercruise, we followed the Riverwalk to the statue of San Antonio.

The Riverwalk offered lush scenery ...

... with tropical flowers.

The Bexar County Courthouse pops up in the skyline.  From Wikipedia,

The building was designed by architect J. Riely Gordon, and borders Main Plaza, along with such other architectural landmarks as the Cathedral of San Fernando. The style is Romanesque Revival, and the main material used is red sandstone. Ground was broken for Gordon's structure on August 4, 1891 and the cornerstone was laid December 17, 1892. After several delays, construction was fully completed in 1896. The building was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1977.

The "beehive tower" is distinctive.

Lady Liberty guards the building.

Across the plaza stands San Ferdinand ...

 ... in front of his namesake church.  From its website (link), 

San Fernando Cathedral was founded in 1731 and is the oldest, continuously functioning religious community in the State of Texas. The Cathedral building has the added distinction of being the oldest standing church building in Texas, and for all of its more than 281 years, has been serving the people of the Archdiocese and San Antonio. For almost 95 years, San Fernando served as the church for all of the religious denominations of San Antonio as the Catholic Church was the only recognized religion of the Spanish and Mexican governments prior to Texas' independence. As the first church in the city, San Fernando has a rich history of responding to the people's needs in and around the church.

Just inside the door is the tombstone for the heroes of The Alamo ....

... and the stone casket for them.

The church provided a cool sanctuary with classic Mexican architecture.

The gold alter gleamed against the white walls. 

John Paul II visited the San Fernando Cathedral in 1987.


We stopped by the market across the plaza ... 

... where volunteers promoted healthy living.

Walking back to the Alamo, I noticed more distinctive architecture ...

... and a cowboy!

Have you met a working cowboy?  One randomly selected commenter from this week's blogs wins a book choice from my convention stash.  Comments are open through Saturday, August 16, 10 pm in Baltimore. I'll post the winner on Sunday, August 17.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

One of the shrines inside the San Fernando Cathedral.

Aloha to San Antonio - An Evening Stroll

Last Monday, I flew to San Antonio for the RWA Annual Conference.   I arrived late afternoon, giving me time to walk around the downtown area.  Above is the flag atop the San Antonio Fire Museum (link).

The Marriott Rivercenter hosted the conference, conveniently located near The Alamo.

From its website (link),

Although the Alamo fell in the early morning hours of March 6, 1836, the death of the Alamo defenders has come to symbolize courage and sacrifice for the cause of Liberty. The memories of James Bowie, David Crockett, and William B. Travis are as powerful today as when the Texan Army under Sam Houston shouted "Remember the Alamo!" as it routed Santa Anna at the battle of San Jacinto on April 21, 1836.

The Alamo Cenotaph is also known as the Spirit of Sacrifice.

Erected in Memory of the Heroes who sacrificed their lives at the Alamo, March 6, 1836 in the defense of Texas, 'They chose never to surrender nor retreat, these brave hearts with flag still proudly waving perished in the flames of immortality that their high sacrifice might lead to the founding of this Texas.

The Alamo leads to San Antonio's famous Riverwalk (link).

 Even the wildlife enjoy the river!

The Towers of the Americas offers a city wide view, including the San Antonio River (link). 

St. Joseph's Catholic Church demonstrates San Antonio's diversity.  From its website (link):

The cornerstone for Saint Joseph Church was laid in 1868 by a group of San Antonio's German Catholic Immigrants who wanted to worship and hear God's Word proclaimed and celebrated in their own language. Over the course of years the German Community constantly improved their Parish of St. Joseph and its buildings. 

The Riverwalk leads to La Villita.  From its website (link),

A Historic Arts Village since 1939, galleries and shops in one square block offer unique art by local & regional artists featuring oil paintings, sculptures, water-colors, metal art, rock art, textiles, copper wares, pottery, jewelry, stained glass and regional folk art.

The Riverwalk also offers its own entertainment center.   The Arneson River Theater was erected by the Works Progress Administration from 1939 - 1941. 

The theater was featured in MISS CONGENIALITY with Sandra Bullock.   

Have you visited San Antonio?  One randomly selected commenter from this week's comments wins a book choice from my convention stash. Comments are open through Saturday, August 16, 10 pm in Baltimore.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, August 17.   During this two week period, I will be away in Florida with my oldest son on a college hunting trip.  This also gives time for USPS to deliver my books from San Antonio!  


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City 

The Arneson Theater features five bells, representing 
the five historic missions in San Antonio.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Aloha to the Annapolis Irish Festival - Tshirts!

I found a few shirts I liked ...

... I may need "Party Like A Pict" for next year's RT Booklovers' Convention.

I chatted with the Warrior Brotherhood before Albannach's second set - they are veterans serving veterans.

This was an appropriate tshirt for Albannach's performance.

Geico gave out "hand fans" featuring their famous mascot.   The fans came in handy with the summer heat!

How can you not smile at this tshirt?


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Aloha to the Annapolish Irish Festival - Out and About

The Infamous Welsh Cookie Co. intrigued me.  From its website (link),

Welsh Cookies are known by many other names, including Miners Cakes or Welsh Cakes. The Welsh name for them is Pice Ar Y Maen. Generations of coal and slate miners in Wales took these nutritious “cakes” to work every day. Traditionally, Welsh Cookies contained black currants and nutmeg. Miner’s wives rolled and fried the cakes each morning much like we now make pancakes. The resulting cookie has a biscuit-like flavor and texture. I often tell people that if you combined the best characteristics of pancakes, shortbread, scones, and biscuits, the result would be a Welsh Cookie.

Of course I had to chat with the teens manning the Kona Ice truck.   The guys told me they had lei tucked away ...

... and I asked them to wear the lei and give me the shaka!

Kudos to the Vets for their service!


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Aloha to the Annapolis Irish Festival - Chesapeake Caledonian Pipes and Drums

Here comes the Chesapeake Caledonian Pipes and Drums. From its website (link),

The Chesapeake Caledonian Pipes & Drums was formed in 1985 to promote the highest standards in both traditional and contemporary bagpipe and drum ensemble performance. Since then, the band has regularly participated in parades, concerts, and pipe band competitions throughout the Mid-Atlantic region.

The band wears the Ancient MacDonald tartan coupled with white police shirts, black tie, and black waist-cropped Naval mess jackets, in honor of the Naval heritage of Annapolis.The most distinct feature of our uniform is the cap badge representing a Maryland Blue Crab, a symbol of the Chesapeake Bay, the region that is home to our pipers and drummers.

There's nothing like the pipes and drums to make the heart beat faster.

I spotted at least two women in the band.

The audience enjoyed their performance!


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City