HAPPY BIRTHDAY, WINNIE! We slept in after the long drive yesterday, well, at least I did. It rained for a long time overnight and woke us up, but this morning the sun came out off and on. They need the rain badly and last night we got 3″ which will help with the drought conditions. Many retention ponds along the highway yesterday were almost dry. The high today is supposed to be 86 with 86% humidity, stronger winds, but mostly cloudy. Maybe the cloud cover will help a little with the heat. We left about 11:00 after taking care of some business via phone at home. We drove downtown to the River Walk and found convenient parking in a structure nearby.
We walked 2 blocks and took the stairway down to the River Walk level.
There were not a lot of people out and about at this time of day which made it very nice for walking around. We popped in and out of a few shops where I found a nice Texas Christmas ornament to add to my collection.
We continued walking along the river checking out the restaurants as we went.
We ended up stopping at the Original Mexican Restaurant and Bar for lunch and sat outside right along the water.
Bob ordered a large Dos Equis draft. Little did they tell him that it was going to be “Texas size”.
We ordered nachos traditionale which were described as 8 nachos with beef and cheese, but we didn’t know what to expect. This is what we got and it was delicious with guacamole, lettuce, and tomatoes on top. It was a perfect portion to share and it hit the spot.
After lunch, we walked on further along the river and then crossed over a bridge to walk on the other side.
I took this picture from the street looking down at the river when we crossed over. The colorful umbrellas mark Casa Rio, the first restaurant built on the water in 1946.
We walked the loop as seen on this map.
We ended up walking a little longer distance back in the other direction and stopped where we found the flood gate.
I looked up the history of how the River Walk was created and this is what I found. In September of 1921, a disastrous flood along the San Antonio River killed 51 people. Plans were developed for flood control of the river. Suggestions by Architect Robert Hugman created a plan to have a flood gate at the northern end of the bend and a small dam (Olmos Dam) would be at the southern end of the bend in the river. A Tainter gate was put in the channel to regulate the flow. Many buildings have street entrances and separate river entrances one level below. It created the present 2.5 mile long River Walk. I find it always nice to learn more about the places we visit. We enjoyed today on our second visit to the River Walk. On the drive back to the campground, Bob had to stop at Walmart to get some DEF for the bus. Our drive back also took us past the AT&T Center where the San Antonio Spurs play basketball.
Back at the campground, we went to the pool so I could take a swim. The water was cool and it was still cloudy out with a few sprinkles now and then, but it felt good to be in the water. I had the pool all to myself.
Bob sat on the side in the shade and did some checking of driving routes for the next few campgrounds. From the pool, I could see this cool pond that the campground has for fishing or just sitting by to enjoy the view.
After my swim, we played a game of checkers while I dried off a little before heading back to the campsite. (Bob won the game.) On the drive back from the pool, we took a trip around the campground to see who had arrived today. I’d hate to be this guy trying to get in somewhere pulling this trailer which is taller than the bus. Yikes!
The sun finally came out around dinnertime. We decided to order a pizza for dinner from the cafe in the campground, since we haven’t had pizza in a long time. The pizza was delicious and it was nice not to have to cook.
We took our walk after dinner and started to pack up as much as we could before we move on tomorrow. We are heading north to Fredericksburg, TX where we will spend the next 6 days. Fredericksburg is known for its wineries and has a German heritage, but the real reason we are going there is because there are a lot of off-road trails in the area that we want to explore. It had cooled off since this afternoon and the humidity level had dropped, so we sat outside to watch TV on a beautiful night.