Sunday, July 12, 2009

Broadway Tire & Automotive

Excellent service.  That is always such a pleasure to be able to say.

We needed a new tire the other day, and they were quick and helpful in sourcing it, delivery and replacement.

Then when I was worried about having driven over more than one nail (there was one in the blown tire), Nicky jacked up and checked the other tires and filled a couple which had low pressure for no charge.  

Note on this hot San Antonio weather:
* These high temperatures, combined with bumpy roads, can really take the air out of tires, so it's good to check them often and fill as necessary!


Gabriel Nuno has been in his profession for over 36 years.  His wife also works with him in the shop, specializing in coloring.  The most frequent repair needed is worn down (boot) heels. Excellent prices, service and experience.  The store's interior will be a surprise, with fascinating old, but working machinery & lots of memorabilia.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Botanic Garden

photo by Christopher Borchardt

The San Antonio Botanical Garden is great!  I like all the different themes.  This shot is from the Garden for the Blind, where everything can be touched - much from waist height - and is included specifically for it's scent and/or texture.  This photo is of a decorative sandcastle.  There was even a touch map of the garden.  They also have a rose garden, an Asian-themed garden and a children's (planted by small hands) vegetable garden.

Fourth of July

We started off our day in Terrell Hills for their homegrown parade and city party.  Local residents coordinate this fun family time and are also the parade participants.  I remember decorating bike wheels with interwoven red, white & blue streamers a time or two growing up  - it's that kind of thing.  The booths and food afterwards included items from vendors sponsoring the event.  The kids we were with had a fabulous time getting their hair painted, winning a finger puppet Statue of Liberty, and trying for dollars in the wind machine.

We then headed over to Lackland Air Force Base for fireworks.  It was DUSTY and windy.  A fabulous pyrotechnics show though, and there was a carnival nearby.  I have not experienced fireworks with accompanying music before.  That was enjoyable this time.  Then at the end of the base show some other fireworks began in the sky just to the left.  As we walked to our cars we were able to watch some extras.

Hooray for colored, exploding lights!

... land of the free, home of the brave ...

Silver Stars!

Photo by Daniel Rogers

Photo by Daniel Rogers

We had a lot of fun watching the Silver Stars play the Chicago Sky.  They're a good team!  Go Stars!!  Talented athletes working hard and having fun are almost always fun to watch.  Pictured are a few of their biggest fans, who changed their hats quarterly during the game.  I didn't find out more about these ladies except that they have a lot of personality and that they order their outfits online.

Interesting Ceremony at Mission Espada

So on Memorial Day we were with some friends visiting Mission San Juan Capistrano and Mission Espada.  At Mission Espada, we pulled up just as some people were organizing for a ceremony with drums, incense and elaborate feathered costumes.  They gathered beside the parking lot and then walked together to the front of the main entrance of the Mission building, where they chanted and turned together in a prescribed pattern. Then at some point, a classically dressed monk walked by the group of what looked like some kind of Aztec-influenced Native Americans.  No, this wasn't a staged show at Disneyland.  It was Texas, U.S.A.  Sometimes in life, you just hush up and watch.
* photo by Dave Rogers

Shrine of the Little Flower

I happened on this place one day when I was searching for other stuff around town.  It's such an old-looking, European style building compared to it's surroundings (ordinary street with a modern school, convenience stores).  A lady who lives nearby told me that when the Pope comes to town, he comes here.  Is driven a special route from the airport.  I'll leave it to you to visit for yourself and see what's inside the main sanctuary.

Symphony Petting Zoo

Recently at the Laurie Auditorium at Trinity University, the San Antonio Symphony had a chance for kids to be able to touch, handle and try for themselves real symphonic instruments. There was an accompanying short performance by a local children's orchestra. Craft stations were around for kids to make a horn out of a piece of tubing for instance. This was all a precursor to a regular Symphony concert. It was a delight to watch the kids faces as they explored the musical instruments. I think this is a once a year event.

Fiesta Decorations

It's such a fun thing to have an entire city get in on a party. Throughout town people decorate their doors with wreaths, their houses with cut-paper banners of all colors, and sometimes you'll see streamers of ribbons.

San Anto Mural Project

I was curious about this when I first heard about it. Was finally able to join a tour last month along with a large group of Hispanic Studies students.

These are a series of murals on walls of businesses mostly, in an area on the West side of San Antonio. The idea of this non-profit organization is to decorate public spaces, plus give local young artists an outlet for creativity and expression. Plus I think to contribute to the public debate.

As well, we heard that at one store, the presence of the murals has prevented "tagging," which is gang members spray-painting their signs/initials on places around town.

Most of the murals done by this organization are the "narrative" type. I was expecting more Graffiti Art (you know, big, bright letters basically). Instead, their murals tell a story with images.

One project was actually a mosaic. Many pieces of glass were assembled off-site and then mounted onto the side of a house. This piece was very heavy and needed a crane to lift it.

Thank you to Ruth for taking us around with her megaphone.