Wednesday, October 5, 2016

{Journal Entry} Two Last Days in Texas

Our last two days were a Saturday and Sunday.

On Saturday we picked up our airman at the bowling alley on base promptly at 9 am. That was a convenient place to meet up; he just needed to walk across the street to his dorm and it was less crowded than the Reception Center parking lot.

Today he had decided to go to Sea World. Sea World is very supportive of the military, and offers each member of the military three complimentary tickets for family members per year.



The reason we went here was quite simple: the rides. And not the kiddie rides but the stomach dropping, dipping, fast ones.

Like this one:







This one was good, but a bit jerky.






The other good ride there was the kind where your feet dangle.




And yes, we did go upside down a few times.



 Mr. Lego Airman and I went on each of these twice, before we headed over to a mild water ride - Journey to Atlantis. There was another water ride in the park, but Mr. Lego Airman did not want to get his blues wet.




On another note, we had been to Sea World in San Diego, and thought that their Atlantis ride was much better. Really, this was just a glorified log ride.




The entertaining part of the ride though was not the ride.... each time a boat came down the slide, an amazing amount of water would shoot into this area. The corner was the best - see My Sweetie below? Really, you can just see his arms. And he got soaked.



The park was not at all crowded and we were done with the rides we wanted by 11:30.


Since we were in Texas and we are big In-N-Out fans we decided to find a Whataburger to try.


I split a double with My Sweetie.



They were actually pretty good, but I must say that In-N-Out takes first place.





Next, we headed to the Tower of the Americas. This thing was actually very close to our hotel so we parked there and then walked to it.



It is 750 feet tall, and after the stratosphere in Vegas, the tallest freestanding tower in the US.



Pretty tall. Good thing I am not afraid of heights.

In our elevator though, there was this sweet Hispanic lady that about had a panic attack as we went up in the glass elevator. She hunched into the corner, started mumbling in Spanish (probably swearing), and tried to hide behind the elevator attendant.

Looking at the sights.




San Antonio, Texas.



You could walk all around the tower and we spent a few minutes checking it out.




The very week that Mr. Lego Airman started BMT the Bourne movie came out. So we found one movie theater, right inside the 1604 loop, that was playing it. The 1604 loop is a freeway that surrounds San Antonio, and is the limit to where your airman can go on town liberty.

We all really liked this movie and I was glad we were able to see it in the theaters. 




We were really packing in lots of stuff and still needed to get dinner before the 8pm time to get back to base. Really the time to get back is 7:30. You could get in traffic, have a flat, so many things, and if your airman is late he gets in huge trouble.



Dinner was a quick bite of appetizers at Chili's on the Riverwalk, which was very close to our hotel.







That evening My Sweetie and I decided to go back up the tower. We had wristbands that let us go up as many times as we wanted that day, so we decided to go get drinks at the restaurant at the top.

We didn't realize it, but to get into the bar or restaurant, you don't need to pay an admission fee. The view was lovely and we had a nice time.



When we went to get on the elevator to go down, the attendant noticed our admission wristbands. He asked if we wanted to go up to the observation deck and we thought, "Why not?"


It was very windy up there, on the outdoor level, but the lights were pretty. As we were walking around I noticed lots of people in the upper level. After a bit we decided it was getting late so headed for the elevator.

All of those people waiting on the upper level were in a long line, that wrapped around, waiting for the elevator. And the elevator was taking its sweet time. After about 20 minutes My Sweetie went to see if there was any faster way to get down and he could not find one employee in the entire two levels. At one point the elevator did not come for about 10 minutes and people started talking about calling the bottom, since no one was around.

The people behind us said that they had worked at the Tower, and that the elevators are notorious for breaking down. Lovely information to hear, when you think you are stuck 750 feet up in the air, and you are thinking you have to walk down 75 stories with a busted ankle.

Finally, 45 minutes later, we got on an elevator. So be warned, if you head up at night, you might be up there for a while. At least we had a view to look at while we were waiting.

The next day Mr. Lego Airman really wanted us to attend church on base with him. Most of his flight went each week and enjoyed sitting together there. You enter in the most orderly fashion, escorted by your airman. Airmen sit in the back  with their parents, while the rest of the church is taken up by other trainees. There were at least 1000 people in there.

At the beginning they did something neat. They had the graduated airman stand, and then their parents, while everyone cheered and did their Hooah's. Then, starting with Week 6, each week stood up and shouted "Praise the Lord!"

Photography was forbidden so no photos.

The day before, Mr. Lego Airman had told us that he wanted to watch the Niner game in our hotel room. But we were not in California anymore but in Texas, and it wasn't on our channels.


So instead we walked Riverwalk, looking for a place that had the game. Surprisingly, most places were not able to get it and we ended up back at Chili's watching the game and eating nachos and cheese fries.



We didn't have too much time after it ended so we headed back to base.


Lackland AFB. It definitely had a different feel to it, just the way the streets and buildings were laid out.



Driving by those massive dorms.



We had some time so we headed to the parade grounds, where there were lots of planes on display.





Our Airman.


One last photo.






It had been a fun four days together. I realized during this trip that the last time it was just the three of us was 16 years before, so it was really neat to just be with our firstborn.


After dropping him off I had a few tears. But I knew he had done his best and really felt part of the Air Force family.


My Sweetie and I headed to Riverwalk one last time.We found a cute place down a bit where we ordered salsa and chips. I had my first Mexican Mule. Yum.




Then we walked a bit, and found a place to split a plate of fajitas.





A perfectly lovely ending to a fabulous trip.




And the next day, this. On the way home.


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