San Antonio, Texas

Where In The World Is Tanya

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Remember The Alamo

Who could not visit San Antonio without visiting The Alamo !!

“Remember The Alamo”, a sort of San Antonio motto, refers to the battle cry of the earlier Texan’s striving endeavor for independence from Mexico.  General Santa Ana’s Mexican Army seized The Alamo after an exhausting fight to death by our Texas heroes amid what was once a Spanish Catholic mission, turned fort.  The name “Alamo” derives from Spanish cavalry members who nicknamed the mission after their own village of Alamo de Parras; meaning “cottonwood”. 
I bet some do not know that there were originally 6 organized groups who wanted ownership of The Alamo during 1836 when Texas was in a state of revolutionary flux where the former Mexican state had broken away. 
The list:  Monarchists desired Texas to be subjugated to the Spanish Crown, The Confederation of Anglos and Tejanos had their own ideas for Texas to be a republic independent (along with a rebel confederation which was led by Sam Houston), the fledgling nation of the United States preferred Texas to tie with them, particular Federalists preferred Texas as a Mexican government and  the sixth group, members of the Centralists wanted Texas to be a part of Mexico but ruled by a national government.
On March 6, 1836 the Confederation of Anglos and Tejanos, dominant Hispanic landowners, were indoors of The Alamo amid approximately 200 desperate men from all over the U.S. and realized they were in need to face a helpless battle to defend their aspirations for Texas with their lives; not realizing there was no aid on the way.  During two weeks of bloodshed engagement, finally Santa Anna was fiercely knocking on their fort’s door.
By dawn of that historical day, March 6, 1836, the hostel Mexican soldiers took the Alamo.  The hidden Texian children, women and slaves (along with James Walker Fannin) were executed by General Santa Ana’s order on March 26, 1836.  And according to historical records, there was not a single rebel fighter left alive to tell the tale of this historic battle.  Some 600 Mexican troops perished in this battle; which tells me our 189 or 200 heroic and brave men put up a great fight indeed.
History tells us of one lone nonmilitant slave, known only as John, lived to tell the provisional rebel government details of the fort’s battle.
So the month which followed that historical conflict, the wailing cry of “Remember The Alamo” became the rally inspiration to gather the rebels again and march onward towards their goal.  Finally at San Jacinto (now named Houston, Texas) the commander of the brigade and newly formed rebel volunteers, Sam Houston, led us into victory during another month long and exhausting fight for the freedom of Texas.  On April 21, 1836, Houston heralded 910 men to march the plains outside of San Jacinto and shot cannons toward the surprised Mexican forces.
The 20-minute battle was short and fierce.  The Mexican soldiers had been caught off guard and were completely vanquished by our battle cries echoing amid the smoke, gunshots and whistles of cannons shooting by “Remember The Alamo!”.
As for myself, I cannot drive through or visit San Antonio without stopping to walk the grounds of The Alamo.  Every time I visit the old mission I feel proud to belong to Texas as I read through the historical plaque information and logs displayed about. 
Today, the citizens of San Antonio (as so in Texas and the depths of The United States) are made up of a multitude of nationalities.  There is a common sense of friendliness and scores of politeness in sharing of history and culture embedded into the people I chance upon while there.  I see pleasing smiles on everyone’s faces and have been graced with kindly conversations; from those who were born in the area all the way to transplanted folks whom all seem proud to call San Antonio their home.
In closing, I certainly “Remember The Alamo” in my own special way and I most certainly urge anyone who contemplates a visit to San Antonio to be assured of a wonderful experience. 
Take your camera!

Digitally Painted from my original virtual screenshot in Second Life!

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Segway Addict

SegCity Segway Tours ~ San Antonio, Texas

August 2014

Yep!  That's Me!

I thought it would be fun to show off my Segway photo before I send 

you down below to peak at the rest of my San Antonio pics!

I had a blast!

I even went back the next night!

SegCity Segway Tours is situated downtown on Losoya Street

next to the Riverwalk!  All sorts of choices in which tour to take;

including a great mini class before you roll out the door!

It's a MUST DO!

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Panoply Of Past

Mission Nuestra Señora de la Purisima Concepción de Acuña 

Mission Concepcion ~ San Antonio, Texas

What you see here is my art works from an original photo I took in the summer of 2014.

Tripping through the world wide web, you will find photos taken of this glorious Church Of Mission Concepcion and the transformation of it's grounds and stone.  Originally, the outer was painted with colorful geometric designs which have faded over time.  Some original frescos can be found in various indoor rooms and ceilings.  Dedicated in 1755, this is the oldest church in America!

Missions in San Antonio stretch across the city and you can't really visit each to it's fullness in just one day.  This Mission kept me quite entertained with all it's stairways to various rooms and sections.  The cathedral was amazing!   And, of course, church services are held regularly; still serving the community!

I took a lot of time at each one and have a flock of photographs yet to present, but one by one they are landing here for you to see and hopefully buy for your wall decor!  I want to work with my main mission photos with HDR processing; coming soon!  See below, too, for other paintings of historical sites!

Digitally Painted from my original photo!


Friar Devotion (B)

Mission San Juan Capistrano  ~  San Antonio, Texas

Mission San Juan Capistrano was founded in 1731 by Spanish Catholics of the Franciscan Order, on the eastern banks of the San Antonio River in present-day San Antonio, Texas; although it was first established in East Texas as San José de los Nazonis Mission in 1716.  It now joins the 5-Missions chain with The Alamo, Mission San Jose, Mission Concepcion and Mission Espada.

While visiting the Missions spread across San Antonio my heart was touched with glimpses from the past and how our beautiful State Of Texas formed much of its history.  Mission San Juan is quite preserved with most remains of the original buildings which is surprising since it was exposed to frequent Indian attacks.  As with most missions it is very spread out and as you walk the grounds vesselled calls breeze through the trees as if to whisper fractions from it’s past.  You don’t notice elaborate sculpturing or ornate structures here.  This was a working mission and by 1762 there were around 203 Native Americans living, working and worshiping here. 

Through the earlier years it underwent many changes; times with no service, new constructions, tearing down of some and good old hard-working days to keep it an integral cooperation for its community and preservation.  I’m glad they really never modernized the chapel, priest’s quarters and special stone sections found on the grounds.  And it’s a perfect photo opportunity where mother nature surrounds it, rather than houses, shops and lots of electrical post wires. 

If you just take some time to enjoy its natural beauty and history, you might take a closer listen to the breezes and hear Nazonie and Nacado chants and praise.  Get back to nature!

Digitally Painted from my original photo!

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Friar Devotion  (A)

Mission San Juan Capistrano  ~ San Antonio, Texas

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First Mission  (A)

Mission Espada ~ San Antonio, Texas

Mission San Francisco de la Espada ~ Founded In 1690

My love for finding ruins and time-honored traces from the past kept me as diligent as I could be while visiting Mission Espada since most of it was undergoing renovation.  No way could a photo of the mission decorated with ladders, paint buckets and scaffolding ever make it to my website, so I zoomed in quite a bit to snap variant of angles and segments.

I was fully intrigued with the prominent sectors that remained as stonework rubble outlining what used to be lumber storerooms, schools, private quarters, blacksmith stalls and Indian houses.  What is now called Mission Espada is the first mission built in Texas; acting also as a not-so-heavily guarded or occupied fort.  Legacies and stories of attacking Apache Indians and other tribes are scribed in books and brochures found in the Book Store. 

This mission plaza holds deep histories for over 60 years where language and traditions were taught, Indians developed skills in growing crops and raising cattle, the production of textiles and bricks were a form of revenue; and of course, the Franciscan brothers taught the Coahuiltecans how to worship and become servants of God.

Texas’s oldest Spanish Colonial Mission is way south of San Antonio situated near S East Loop 410 between Espada Road and the San Antonio River.  Mission Park covers most of the grounds and worth taking a hike through.  You will find older residential homes sprinkled around it, but they merit taking photos of since they blend in with old barns and farm equipment. 

I took lots of pix that day and plan to show some off.

You will want to take a tour while there and be sure to visit it’s 18th-century church;

which still operates today.  

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First Mission  (B)

Mission Espada ~ San Antonio, Texas

Mission San Francisco de la Espada ~ Founded In 1690

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Castle Charmed  (A)

Terrell Castle ~ Lambermont Castle Events

San Antonio, Texas

Who doesn't love the traditional European castles and their legends?
As history increases century after century in the USA, earlier settlers up until
today's society of architecture lovers still commission builders to replicate castles
from around the world!
They are scattered throughout our nation and it's always a divine pleasure to come upon one!
Just across from Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio remains quite an elegance of stone 
and landscape.  In 1894 Edwin Holland Terrell had this castle built for his family on what is now
Grayson Road.  Later it became a stylish bed and breakfast and today the infamous Terrell Castle
is owned and operated by Lambermont Castle Events where weddings and celebrations 
are commenced!

I took this photo on my last day of a 2-week trip; which was my 3rd trip to San Antonio in the summer of 2014, and on my way to visit some gardens before I headed back Dallas.  

When you see something as amazing and historical like this, you have to stop and smell the daisies!

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Castle Charmed  (B)

Terrell Castle ~ Lambermont Castle Events

San Antonio, Texas

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Alamo Vespers

San Antonio, Texas

There is  more to see than just The Alamo!  

I always take the time to look around and enjoy what the people of San Antonio provide to their community and tourists.  I took this shot of an exquisite Oboe street performer while relaxing on the grounds of The Alamo.  I have tried to google in search of his name, with no results ~ so if anyone knows of him, I would love to inscribe his name here on my site and hopefully contact him to show him how I prepared this photo of him swooning a San Antonio audience one fine sunny day in August!

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Casa Rio River Walk Spectacle

San Antonio River Walk

My first night (out of 2 weeks) I most certainly rushed to The Riverwalk having Casa Rio Mexican Restaurant on my mind.; tummy growling and hungry!  Requesting a table alongside the river and watching the ducks flutter and swim, I shared with my waitress that the last time I had dined here was with my Mother who has now since passed away.  

My memories of The Riverwalk as far back as I can remember, even during childhood vacations, are stocked with flashbacks of enchiladas, rice, beans, chips, hot sauce and feeding the ducks  with my family at Casa Rio!  In fact, I do not think I have ever NOT eaten there while visiting San Antonio!

So do I recommend Casa Rio?  Heck yeah!

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Where Are They Now

Downtown River Walk ~ San Antonio, Texas

Briscoe Western Art Museum Sculpture Garden

Sculpture by Sandy Scott
Titled "Briscoe Bison"
In the heart of Downtown San Antonio you can gaze at Art Works every which way
your head turns at any given moment.
I happened upon an area of the River Walk that was brimming with metal and stone sculptures.
The American Bison once roamed the grasslands of our country in mass herds.
Sadly, they have become nearly extinct.
Their grace amazes me with their long shaggy coats and curled horns.
I've been up close to these beauties and was in awe at their beauty and enormous size.

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Where Are They Now

Downtown River Walk ~ San Antonio, Texas

Briscoe Western Art Museum Sculpture Garden

Sculpture by Sandy Scott
Titled "Briscoe Bison"

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Bless Your Heart Gift Shop & Boutique ~ Bracken Village

~ San Antonio, Texas ~

Throw your brakes on! 

Just outside of San Antonio (along FM2252/Nacogdoches Road) heading toward New Braunfels is a quaint picturesque hill country style shopping and dining village that demands your bottom to get out of the car and occupy yourself for a few hours!  It’s very popular for photographers, visitors and locals to appreciate the restored turn of the century rural German farmer buildings, barns and houses turned into restaurants and shops!  This is not your typical modern day shopping perception.  It’s most certainly a place where you will experience a historical faith in Texas which massages your soul bringing back wonders of an era that has passed us by!

Bless Your Heart Gift Shop & Boutique punches a clever display of old painted pink bicycles splattering along its front fence line welcoming you straight into their 1860’s-ish barn and goody-find store. 

I couldn’t help but turn my camera off, wonder inside and buy myself a “pretty” for memory sake!

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Calvacade Of Bells  (A)

Fiesta Noche del Rio ~ San Antonio, Texas

The San Antonio Riverwalk provides a shopping cart for your eyes, soul & tummy!
A multitude of tasty restaurants and things to do!  One of my favorite festival 
performances is the Fiesta Noche del Rio where an outdoor performance
features flamenco dancing to folkloric music at the waterfront
Arneson River Theatre.  The bells and stone wall provides a nostalgic
backdrop to this magnificent show!
HDR Photo Processing of my original shot!

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Calvacade Of Bells  (B)

Fiesta Noche del Rio ~ San Antonio, Texas

August 2014

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Friendship Monument

La Antorcha de la Amistad

~ Located at Losoya and Commerce ~ Downtown San Antonio ~ 

La Antorcha de la Amistad (Spanish for "The Torch of Friendship") is a monumental abstract sculpture that stands in the center of the rounded circle-rotary street just above a Riverwalk entry staircase and near The Alamo.  The artist of the sculpture is world-renowned Mexican sculptor, Sebastian, who was commissioned by the Asociación de Empresarios Mexicanos (Association of Mexican Businesspeople). The sculpture was presented as a gift from the Mexcan Government to the City of San Antonio in 2002.
What most tourists don't know??  
I learned this tidbit while taking a Segway tour around downtown and my guide shared that "some" of the people who live and work in this area think it's an eye-sore which causes atraffic build-up due to the circled street built in order to exhibit it.  She also told me the Mexican Government has gifted this to us in thought of an apology to the fall of the Alamo and it's fateful battle.  
While I was curious to hear another's opinion of this beautiful modern art monument, I was sad to hear such news of how "some" locals feel about it.  Personally, I rejoice that this was a tremendous gift to San Antonio!
So, as soon as I returned to my hotel and uploaded a couple of hundred new photos to my laptop, I of course, googled more information on the monument itself and learned:
The group that commissioned it, the Asociación de Empresarios Mexicanos, worked with the Mexican Consulate and the City of San Antonio to make the sculpture a symbol of cooperation and shared culture between the country and the city.  The previous empty traffic island was ultimately (after some debate) chosen for the monument's site which history states, according to many, is where the prisoners that were captured at The Battle Of The Alamo were executed by General Santa Ana's orders.
So, that is a more clarifying translation of it's purpose and I remain proud for San Antonio to honor it's grace to the skyline and it's purpose to stand so tall and proud.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion, now you have heard mine. own observation to The Torch of Friendship?  Not only does everyone seem to stop and take pictures of it,  you can see this from almost any spot you happen to be while walking the downtown area and below on the River Walk.  

So for me?  It's my landmark to know where I parked.  *giggles*

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Drifting Tour

Year round, Rio San Antonio Cruises operates guided river boat tours and dining tours.  Photographers and tourist snap away with their cameras at almost any angle or view to capture these fun-filled boats - and I am one who participates and have collected hundreds of photographs.  It's a difficult task to select just one or a few to prepare for publishing and print since I see this glorious riverwalk to contain everlasting beauty and enjoyable surprises.  I plan to post some of these with the photography details and others with a more painted or watercolor effect.....soon.
I have taken a few of these tours myself and felt quite educated and entertained by the Guides who fill our ears with histories, vendor patron and establishment information along the way.  
I think the next time I visit I'll take a night cruise and capture the festive lights carouseling and draping among the trees and river paths.

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Alamo Rose

The San Antonio Rose" is a signature song by Bob Wills (who btw was born in my Mother's home town of Turkey, Texas). When I see a rose or think of a rose, two things come to mind.  One, the song "The San Antonio Rose" and second, "The Yellow Rose Of Texas" which is a traditional folk song and is my Mother's favorite flower!
This photo you see here is me - as Bambi Chicque (of BamPu Legacies) where in SecondLife I manage to do virtual photography, blog and design to sell.  I always take photos of The Alamo when in San Antonio, but it's difficult to take one where there are no people on the grounds.  So, last week while preparing some of my recent trips's pix, I thought I would search SecondLife to see if anyone had already built a sim with this structure and wondered that if not,
I would just build one so to take some photos!  
LUCKY ME!  I found The Alamo in SecondLife and my mouth watered and gaped in pleasant surprise to the absolute perfect detail put forth and constructed.  All the way to the court yards, the interiors, the exhibit information, historical collections, textures and photographs.  Just done perfectly!
So, I selected a Spanish lace style pant set, put my hair up and picked some roses to pose in front of The Alamo's grand superstructure of this real historical site!  The photo effect is one I devised myself to give it a festive painted feel ~ and my choice in attire was to mix the new with the old since The Alamo is so alive to me, personally, today!
I hope you enjoy!

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Greetings San Antonio Postcard

September 2014

I have spent the last 8 weeks or so traveling through and photographing parts of Texas.  I always buy postcards to keep as memoirs and to send to family and friends while on my adventures
(to say "Wish you were here" or "HaHa, I'm here and your're not!" ~ lol )  
While on my recent trip I met quite a few educators who will be following my new blog, "Where In The World Is Tanya", and will have their students follow as well for quizes and history details.  
My plans are to create a postcard for each of my blog posts using some of my photos
and any other brainy quote or reference to the subject!

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