Monday, August 3, 2015

San Antonio: The Alamo & Heroic Resistance

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Visiting a piece of history always feels significant.  We're all gracing this earth with our individual life's story.  Who would have ever thought that 297 years after the Alamo was built that a little boy named Noah and his family would step through the Shrine's front door.  While our visit placed no significance and possessed no value to the Alamo itself, our visit contributed to our life's story.  Something we never thought we'd do, or see, or experience as a family with a severely disabled child. Even though we visited the Alamo in the evening hours the heat offered us little to no relief.  The sun followed us through the courtyards as we took temporary shelter from the branches of majestic trees.  Canons, and historic relics sprinkled about telling the story of the 1836 Battle of the Alamo.

I admired the feeling of strength of the Alamo possessed and those who fought for 13 long days, never giving up.  Just like Noah fought for those long 13 minutes to live.  Never giving in and willing to fight to the bitter end.   To a large extent I recognize that fighting drive.  Pressing on at all costs.  Defending, pursuing, and fighting with all that you have - even in the end knowing that a favorable outcome is likely against you.  The courtyards were peaceful with vibrant shades of green.  Cactus plants so large it felt like it's own defensive wall. 
 Noah was very much interested in the walls that lined the courtyard that told the story of the Alamo.  Although Noah does not yet know how to read, (or at least I'm assuming he doesn't even though we do read to him frequently).  He wanted to just spend time in front of them.  Watching, looking and absorbing it.  Sometimes people give Noah little credit for the the strong comprehension abilities that he does have.  I could tell that he was having his own personal experience with the Alamo.  His eyes were alert, his body temporarily calm from his continual spastic movements.  He was learning, engaged and interested.

The Shrine itself looks very small when you view it from the street, but once you enter it's much higher than you'd expect.  A bit of a cathedral-like feel mixed with a hint of historic castle.  Of course there were signs that said you couldn't touch the walls, but I could visually tell they were rough but firm despite age.  Some corners of the ceiling looked like they were suffering from the beginnings of water seepage, but presently didn't seem to be effecting the integrity of the Shrine.  While the ceilings were high the Shrine itself didn't have an abundance of square footage.

Luke & Mommy
Although air conditioned now, it was still incredibly hot.  I visualized a stone on the ground to memorialize the finding of 4 bodies in 1937 and joking to myself that they must have passed from the Texas heat.  There were no pictures permitted within the Shrine.  So it is really one of those places you must see for yourself.  You do have a sense that a very honorable and majestic place to visit.   Noah let out an incredibly big sigh inside the Shrine.  Almost as if displaying relief or conveying a profound understanding about where he was and what he was experiencing. 
Thank Goodness for Texas Water
Noah & His Daddy at the Alamo
There are some really beautiful statutes that line the street near the Alamo.  I have a thing for Angels and really liked the Angel memorial.  There are shops just across from the Alamo.  You'd assume that the Alamo would be out in the middle of nowhere, but it's really almost in the center of everything.  Across the street there was a Ripley's Believe it or Not Museum of sorts and haunted house.  That was certainly interesting and filled with some odd things you just don't see everyday.  It was fun to walk in and out of street shops and it also helped relieve some of the heat to keep it manageable.  All very worthwhile to see if you are traveling down to San Antonio to Morgan's Wonderland.

We concluded our first day in San Antonio trying to unsuccessfully hunt down a Chick-Fil-A for Noah and settling on hotel food, refreshing showers, and tucked ourselves in nicely to get ready for our exciting day ahead at Morgan's Wonderland.  

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails.  Explore. Dream. Discover. Mark Twain


Noah's Miracle by Stacy Warden is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.