(I didn’t stay here. I stayed beside the Alamo, in a place that’s widely thought to be haunted. My room was so small that there would not have been room for a ghost. And the leaf-blower guy comes out at 6:00 every morning to leaf blow the walk around the Alamo. And tour buses just outside my window break the 20-minute parking sign with regularility. There may be better hotel options in town.)
San Antonio, Texas
The former Pearl Brewery has been transformed into a very nice conglomeration of restaurants, shops, outdoor markets, music events, and so forth. The old boiler house is now home to a restaurant called – this is complicated! – the Boiler House. It has a “casual yet energetic atmosphere” which I think means “loud.” But it also has wine and craft beer, so I guess after a while that atmosphere won’t be bothersome.
San Antonio, Texas
If any of you have plans to be in Lubbock next weekend (and, really, where else would you want to be?) you might want to take in the Lubbock Studio Tour, which will feature about 50 local artists. This is my first year to participate, and my house is one of the host studios.
On my way home from the Santa Fe Photographic Workshops a few months ago, I was thinking back on the (grueling) week. I had a strong sense that something was about to happen, that some kind of important opportunity was close at hand. My very next thought was, “I hope I am smart enough to recognize it when it shows up.” Not even 24 hours later, an artist friend contacted me – she wanted to know if I’d be interested in being considered as a host studio for this event. Opportunity? Yes, it was…
Anyway, stop by if you can. In addition to art (I will be joined by three other local artists), we’ll have wine. And snacks.
(The Lubbock Studio Tour is a project of the Lubbock Arts Alliance.)
If you are in San Antonio and want to get away from the tourists around the Alamo and the Riverwalk, you could do this:
1. Have breakfast at Ocho, a nice little place at the Hotel Havana. (But the waitress will ask you to not take photos with your camera. You can, she says, take as many as you want with a phone. When asked the difference, she says they don’t allow cameras “with lenses” because of “privacy concerns.” You decide it’s not worth the time to explain to her what a lens actually is. Or how a photo shot with a phone is kind of more likely to instantly show up on Facebook.)
2. Walk north along the Riverwalk. There won’t be any tourists, other than yourself and any companions you may have brought along. But there will be plenty of runners and walkers and dogs. It’s a nice walk. Some of the bridges have art under them, and there’s even a set of locks. It’s a very pleasant place.
3. Take some time at the Pearl Brewery, which hasn’t actually been a brewery in a long time. If it’s a Saturday, the part with the farmers market and retail shops will be pretty crowded, but the part where the sign says GOODS will be quiet. You can sit in the shade and read a book.
4. Or you can take in the stores and do a pretty fair amount of people watching at the market.
5. Or, you can find a chair on a grassy slope above the river and read that same book. (We are Water*, by Wally Lamb, was what I was reading, in case you wondered.)
6. After a while, you could go to La Gloria for some street tacos.
7. And then, you could get the water taxi to take you back toward downtown. The taxi’s only marginally faster than walking, but it does go through the locks, which is something that I don’t get to do in my day-to-day routine.
San Antonio, Texas
* I agree with the review, and am glad that the book was on sale: it wouldn’t have been worth it otherwise.