San Antonio

Nice city. Just got here at noon. Checking things out at the convention center. Gorman's thing on library education is too packed so I passed. Awesome center and the few glimpses I've had of the Riverwalk are something else, had no idea. Time to go eat...

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If you're exploring the Riverwalk, be sure to take in the Alamo. It's right off the riverwalk, can't remember exactly where, but not too far from Rivercenter Mall.The Alamo is the premier secular shrine I can think of in this country. No religious symbols aside from the building itself, but a tremendous feeling of reverence. Interestingly, it was a Tejana named deZavala who helped the Alamo be preserved when there was talk of demolishing it in the early 20th Century.
 

What's a Tejana? I did check it out, its a very pretty place and very simple to walk through. There is an actual shrine there where cameras aren't allowed and you can read the names of the dead. I surprised by the variety in the names, even some Mexican ones, several from Ireland and other European places and a free black man.

A Tejana is a Texas woman of Mexican descent. Adina De Zavala was such a woman. Her grandfather was the first vice-president of the Nation of Texas. Perhaps as a result, she was extremely committed to preserving bits of Texas history like the Alamo:

At one point, in 1908, Miss De Zavala went so far as to barricade herself inside the north barrack of the Alamo for three days to protest its destruction. It was her belief that this section was of even more historical worth than the Alamo chapel. De Zavala's efforts were not in vain, and history has proved that she was right in her belief about the value of the old barracks. It has been confirmed that that section of the Alamo grounds is where much of the fighting took place in the legendary 1836 battle.

Although the Texans were slaveholders, their desire for personal liberty and hatred of the tyrant Santa Anna were multiracial. Like the President says, the love of freedom is universal.I love San Antonio. I lived there four about four years in the mid-90s. If I wasn't here in Alaska, I'd be there!

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