Sep 18, 2011

Texas Part Duex: 9/18/11: Salado, Austin, & San Antonio

Woke up in the Holiday Inn (which is good since that's where I went to sleep) to the sound of doors slamming in the rooms next to ours.  At 6 AM.  Damn.  Dozed off and on until around 8 am when I just couldn't bear the thought of keeping those cinnamon rolls lonely in the free breakfast zone.

Once on the move we headed toward Austin to make our way to San Antonio.  My only wish was to stop at the Snake Farm along the way but we were easily sidetracked by a Cabella's that sprung up out of nowhere.  I screamed at Jen to take the exit we were almost passing, which she did with a bit of frustration.  I didn't know what the big deal was since she'd been driving like that the entire time.  Geez.  All I've heard thus far on the driving portion of the trip is, "Where do I go?  Which way? Where?  How?  These roads are stupid.  Which way? Which way????"  Keep in mind we have a GPS and me pointing the way...both of which have malfunctioned.  It's not my fault I keep programming the wrong address into the GPS.  I mean, who calls a road FM2548???   In Oregon we call roads by actual names.

I love Cabella's.  The only thing more exciting to me than Cabella's itself is a Cabella's with a sale.  Jen went ape shrat crazy trying on clothes and ended up spending a lot of money.  This from the girl who, as we were walking in, said, "I'll just play on my phone while you look around."  Silly girl.  Cabella's is for everyone.  Everyone COOL that is.

Rattlesnakes..their pens stink.   Scary.  
From Cabella's we headed to Animal World and Snake Farm (http://www.exoticanimalworld.com/) where Jen wanted to see some exotic animals, like armadillo's.  I informed her the armadillo wasn't exotic but she seemed set in her ways.   The last trip I took to San Antonio was with my friend Cher.  We passed the Snake Farm and shivered, thinking, "Thank Gosh it's closed!"  Later I saw the same snake farm on an episode of Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe.  Being a Mike Rowe (and Dirty Jobs) fanatic, I decided if I ever came back, I was going to stand in the place that Mike Rowe stood.  (Not at all stalkerish.  The thought was of love, I assure you)  At Snake Farm the first animals we saw were some box turtles.  One was upside down in the pen, so Jen tells the guy the turtle is upside down.  He says, "No, he's not."  Jen, who always has to be right, says, "Yes, the turtle is UPSIDE DOWN."   The man says, "That turtle is EXACTLY where he wants to be."  So I look at the turtles and see they ARE really close.  I say, "So, um, the turtles are...making a baby???"  The guy smiles and says, "Yes, in fact, the turtle starts out on top of the other turtle and when penetration happens, the turtle flips backwards off the female and lays upside down while they are doing it.

Turtles mating.  I know, I've hit an all time low.  Even turtles need their privacy.  

At that point we found there was too much information being given out.  However, I did find it rather entertaining that I'd asked two days in a row if a baby was being made (first at Waco and now at the zoo).  I hope that's not going to be a repeating theme.

After the Snake Farm we headed toward San Antonio.  Nothing all that exciting happened there until we were in the Marriott's bar, drinking our complimentary margarita (which by the way was WEAK) when it started pissing down rain and storming.  San Antonio hasn't had rain in about six months.  Amazing, considering in Oregon we get rain almost twice a week in the summer and almost every second in the spring and winter....and sometimes fall.   We Oregonians are prepared for the rain.  Texans, well, let's just say, no so much.  The storm was so awesome it shut down the cable television for a spell.  The noise was deafening as the rain crashed into the roof and walls.  Suddenly it's raining INSIDE.  Rain is leaking down through the walls and all over the floor.  I'm thinking this is totally cool and I want to run up to the roof and scream, TOP OF THE WORLD!  as thunder and lightening crash around me.

No roof access.  Bums.  
There was a guy sitting next to us who apparently is doing some work here in one of the hospitals and was trained initially as a nurse or something.  He was saying he didn't think going on the roof was a good idea and I told him since he was trained if anything happened I'd just come down and see him for medical attention.  He kindly pointed eastward and said, "The psychiatric hospital is over that way!"  That got quite a few chuckles but frankly didn't sway my opinion of the task at hand.  We took the elevator up to the highest floor, Jen held the doors open so I wouldn't get locked in (safety first) and I skipped up two flights of stairs to the roof access doors.  Rainwater was dripping all around the doors and I could hear the lightening.  I was so ready to go!

Damn Marriott thinks locking the roof doors will save someone's life.  I guess it could be true.   No entry for the stupid on this date.   I'll have to save my TOP OF THE WORLD scream for some other storm.  I'm praying it happens within the next few days or it will be too late for Texas.

Tomorrow is all about San Antonio and Jen's desire to see the Alamo (which I've seen and been sufficiently bored with) and the Riverwalk (which I've seen and been even more bored with).  Somewhere along the line we'll hit Chuy's for texmes (thank you Lord) and head back toward Austin.

Bring it on, Texas.  I'm praying for more storms and a more cooperative hotel roof.

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