Day Trip to San Antonio

Standard

Last week we went to San Antonio for the day. We met up with my friend from high school that lives in Austin, which was a nice bonus. I can honestly say we had the perfect day. We did everything we wanted to do, and some more. The weather was amazing too.

Even the drive out there was great. It took three hours and it was on a two lane highway at 75 mph. I haven’t seen a two lane highway since Pennsylvania! We passed fields and fields of wildflowers, farms, and even some patches of cactus! It was peaceful.

Our first stop was the Alamo. I wanted to get there right when it opened. I had heard  that supposedly a lot of people are disappointed when they see the Alamo because it is so small. So knowing this information, the Alamo seemed like the perfect size to us! You cannot take pictures inside the main church building, which I had already known about, but still disappointed me. The expansive courtyards, with the mini museums in the barracks and the living history set ups, more than made up for it though. We spent over an hour here taking everything in. I really consider it a privilege that there are places of history that are preserved and we are able to still see them today.

Our second stop was the River Walk. It really is a beautiful area of the city. We walked around the main loop of the River Walk, but it goes out a few miles in both directions. We had thought about taking a river cruise, but we didn’t, and it honestly wasn’t needed. We saw everything just fine by foot. We were slightly disappointed because we had expected shops along the River Walk, but it was only restaurants and hotels. If we had known that, I probably would have eaten lunch on the River Walk.

We ate lunch at Mi Terra in El Mercado, (The Market Square) which was a street lined with Mexican shops and restaurants. Mi Terra was highly recommended online in different discussion forums. After lunch we took some time to browse around the craft vendors. So much cool stuff!

After lunch we headed back to the Alamo a second time. This was actually a good call because it had been overrun with school kids earlier in the morning, so now it was more quiet.

The last two things we did, Mission Espada and Mission San Jose, wasn’t even a definite thing on our to do list. I figured if we had the time in the afternoon, we’d go, but no big deal if we didn’t. These two missions ended up being my favorite part of the day. The architecture was amazing!

San Antonio_10

San Antonio_21

San Antonio_29

San Antonio_50

San Antonio_54

San Antonio_179

San Antonio_78

San Antonio_83

San Antonio_92

San Antonio_106

San Antonio_107

San Antonio_132

San Antonio_139

San Antonio_119

San Antonio_131

San Antonio_174

San Antonio_156

San Antonio_166

San Antonio_169

 

The Airport

Standard
We went on vacation a few weeks ago. We had to fly out of Houston’s George Bush Airport to Miami. As someone who travels a lot, the thought was not lost on me that now we have a new “home” airport. I’ve gotten so used to northeast airports like Corning-Elmira, Philadelphia and Newark. We traveled frequently enough that we knew what restaurants/areas we like in different airports, and we know our away around the terminals and shuttle systems for the most part.
Not to mention that this would feel extremely different just because flying in and out of the northeast is so… yucky! We always leave home in the dead of the winter (usually raining) so flying south would literally be a breath of fresh (hot and humid) air. It was strange flying from hot weather to hot weather!
The thing I was most worried about at the airport was parking. I researched this ahead of time, and there are two ecopark garages where you can park for $5.54 a day, or $7 for covered parking. I was relieved, because I was expecting to pay $100 for parking! If we fly out of a busy big airport, we’re usually traveling with family, so we leave our car behind. And parking at Corning-Elmira was cheap. So I was a little naive about what to expect in Houston.
The Ecoparking was a decent experience. Two shuttles left while we were getting our bags out of the trunk, but two more pulled up right behind them. The driver hands you a paper slip that has your parking information on it. You have to keep the slip to get to your car when you get back. It was about a 5-10 minute ride to the terminals, including time to pick up a few more people in the parking lot.
Coming home was very strange. I’m not a homebody at all, I’ve always resented the fact that I was from the northeast. Every time I flew home and the pilot said, “Welcoming to Corning, or Newark, etc,” I would always quietly “boooo.” It felt less awful to fly home to Houston, which is a destination for travelers.
There are two airports in Houston, George Bush and Hobby. They are on opposite sides of the city, north and south. It took us half an hour to get to G.B., but we left at 5 a.m. in the morning and had no traffic. Hobby is closer to us, but it is a smaller, domestic airport (Southwest has a hub there) so I’m not sure if we’ll ever get the chance to fly out of it.

The road trip

Standard

Well, we made it! 1600 miles spread out over three days. Here are some photos of the highlights:

PA to TX_9.jpg

PA to TX_15.jpg

PA to TX_34.jpg

PA to TX_43.jpg

PA to TX_46.jpg

PA to TX_52.jpg

PA to TX_69.jpg

PA to TX_108.jpg

PA to TX_114.jpg

PA to TX_118.jpg

PA to TX_119.jpg

PA to TX_132.jpg

PA to TX_138.jpg

PA to TX_150.jpg

PA to TX_168.jpg

PA to TX_188.jpg

PA to TX_193.jpg

PA to TX_195.jpg

PA to TX_210.jpg

PA to TX_218.jpg

My favorite parts of the trip were:

Crossing into Tennessee: The whole first day through Virginia were all roads that I was familiar with. Tennessee was new and exciting to me.

Lookout Mountain, Tennessee: We passed a gorgeous mountain range in lower Tennessee. One of these mountains, Lookout Mountain, was the site of a Civil War battle. It was called the battle in the clouds.

Fort Payne, Alabama: My favorite oldies Christmas song is “Christmas in Dixie,” by the band Alabama. They were formed in Fort Payne. The last line of the song is, “And from Fort Payne, Alabama, God bless you all, We love ya, Happy New Year, Good night, Merry Christmas. Merry Christmas tonight”

Crossing over the Mississippi: Doing this just made me FEEL different. Like we were truly on our way. It also made me feel like a modern pioneer, and I remembered the multiple times that Laura Ingalls Wilder (my favorite author) had crossed the river in her lifetime.

And: crossing into the Texas state line of course!

 

1600 miles

Standard

The trip from Wellsboro to Houston will take 1600 miles, give or take a few.

This is the route we are taking:

Screen Shot 2016-07-09 at 5.13.40 PM

The route shows our planned stopovers each night in Harrisonburg, Virginia and Picayune, Mississippi.

We are leaving Wellsboro on Friday, but at what time remains to be unseen. My dad will arrive early on Friday morning with the UHaul trailer, and we will leave whenever everything is loaded.

We will try to get a decent night’s sleep on Friday night in Harrisonburg, because Saturday is going to be one heck of a long drive – about 900 miles total. Once we’re in Picayune, it’s only five and a half hours left for Sunday morning.

Stay tuned for pictures along the drive!