A Travellerspoint blog

Sharing Some Family History in San Antonio

An old photo, a favorite restaurant are connected

75 °F

So much travel, back and forth across the country. Work, work, work.

In between the storms are down times. Fortunately, we are in a down time now and have a chance to catch our breath. Last year’s storm season lasted nearly the entire year.
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We packed up last week and drove to San Antonio, the site of this year’s Crawford Catastrophe Conference. I don’t go every year and wasn’t going to attend this year, but had to fulfill a promise. I’d promised a friend that I’d go to the conference and introduce her to everyone I know. Hopefully, that will prove to be more of a help rather than a hindrance.

We thought that since we would be in San Antonio, we’d combine it with seeing relatives in Oklahoma, food in Taos and Santa Fe, and shopping for an American Indian rug for a wall hanging. Our grandson said that the trip would actually consist of us waddling from one meal to the next. Out of the mouth of babes……

San Antonio has many ties for my family. My father was born and lived his early years here. My grandparents were married in the San Fernando Cathedral. My grandmother and my father were baptized in the Cathedral.

My grandfather told us that he had worked in the basement of what is now Mi Tierra’s restaurant when the building was part of Produce Row. We have a photo from those years with my grandfather, 2 uncles and my dad in front of his truck.

In Nov 2016 Dale and I had dinner at Mi Tierra’s. I told the waitress about my grandfather. Soon a supervisor came to our table and asked to hear about him. I told her what I could, that he had worked with the bananas and he had told us that it was in their basement. She, Myra, verified that Mi Tierra’s actually had a basement and it was used for produce in the early years. She asked for a copy of my photo.

As the past year has been really busy I didn’t get the photo off the wall to scan and send off. Now, before walking out the door, I took the photo off the wall scanned it and had it printed. I looked but couldn’t find a frame to use so just took the photo along.

On Wednesday, I emailed Myra letting her know that we were in town and had the photo and that we would go to Mi Tierra’s with the photo. We went to the Cathedral to shoot a few more photos, then walked on the River Walk, then walked to Mi Tierra’s. Myra wasn’t in yet but the staff was aware of our mission. We had margaritas while waiting.
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Then Myra showed up at our table, she remembered us and even the table we’d been sitting at over a year ago when she heard the story of my grandfather. I presented to photo to her and she appeared to love it. She said another person had already ordered a frame and that she would send a photo of its location on the wall.
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I was so happy to have my family recognized, I only wish my father could have been there. We ate at Mi Tierra’s so many times but never connected to the right person there. But the photo has found a home.

Posted by Miss Chris 16:34 Archived in USA Tagged food road_trip family san_antonio mi_tierra produce_row Comments (0)

A Hike Into Mug House

Hiking into the Mesa Verde ruins


View Fall trip 2018 & Summer Trip 3 on Miss Chris's travel map.

With the cooking class over it was time to move on to Mesa Verde.

In 2006 my dad, who was still with us, told me about 2 hikes that had opened up, one being to Mug House. We’d planned a grandkids trip with our 6,8,9 and 10-year old grandkids to the southwest so Mesa Verde was on the way. We bought tickets for the hikes and on we went. Unfortunately, I was using a small point and shoot and the camera card crashed after our trip so any photos, good or bad, were lost.

Several weeks ago, we were in Great Basin on a grandkids trip when I ran into retired rangers. As we were talking they mentioned that the trip to Mug House had just opened for tours but was only taking a few people down and it wouldn’t last long. I immediately got online and found that it was open for tours, 10 people per tour, 3 days a week for a few weeks. We were there!

The drive to Mesa Verde was an afternoon drive, arriving in the early evening. We found a site in the campground and set up camp. We not only had reservations for a hike on Fri a.m. but an evening hike on Sunday for sunset.

The drive from the campground to the mesa, where several ruins are, takes about 45 minutes. The road follows hills and the tops of mesas. There are lookouts high on the hills that overlook the cities below.

The hike into Mug House is only open with a ranger-led hike. The hike itself is about 3 miles round trip, nearly straight down the hill, over boulders and rocks. At 7,000’ elevation, the hike back up is a scramble that will leave one breathless.
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https://www.nps.gov/meve/planyourvisit/backcountry_hikes.htm

Mug House itself was amazing again. The ranger who led the hike was an archeologist so she pointed out items that we would have missed; slight differences between building bricks, residue paint inside rooms and windows used as doors.
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A small step ladder was onsite so that we could view, up close, the areas inside the ruins along the wall. We could note the designs still visible around the bottom of the kiva.
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I was able to hang behind and shoot lots of photos while communing with the ancient ones.

Posted by Miss Chris 08:07 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip hiking mesa_verde camping national_park glamping rv_travel mug_house Comments (0)

Santa Fe Cooking, Yum

Learning how to make some Santa Fe food


View Summer Trip 3 on Miss Chris's travel map.

Last Thanksgiving, we were in Taos with our youngest son and his family. I bought a new ristra for the kitchen. My plan was to make chile sauce from the old ristra and hang the new ristra for use this year. I did make the chilie sauce using the techniques told by “Orlando’s” and several natives. Unfortunately, the skins did not blend as they should have and we had small tough pieces of skins that did not have a good mouth feel.

I then made more sauce but after boiling the dried chilies scraped the meat off of each chilie, a tedious process. The sauce tasted fine but was stringy.
As we were going to be in Santa Fe, I had thought that I would sign us up for a cooking lesson. They were offering a cooking lesson on Wed, during our stay. Perfect as the class was on making chilie sauce. Of course, my sign up had not gone thru so I had to sign up again by phone.

On Tues, we moved up to Taos, and even though the campground site didn’t have the view, it was wonderful to be back. Taos feels like another home. We thought we’d spend a little time in Taos, get some good food from our favorite haunts and drive down to Santa Fe on Wed.
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We spent our time filling our belly for the long cold winter ahead! But also found that our favorite chilie stand was now selling fresh picked and freshly roasted green “Hatch” chilies. I only bought ¼ bushel as I didn’t know whether our freezer could hold more. Now I am regretting not buying more. But the chilies were hot and our truck smelled like roasted chilies for some time.

We did make our cooking class and I found out that the problem with my chilie sauce was my blender, I need a more powerful one. Otherwise, except for over cooking the dried pods, I did everything right. But we did learn lots about chilies which is helpful. We also made fresh corn tortillas which are so simple to make and taste so good.
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With our mouths still hot from the salsas we stopped for hot chocolate like the Aztec’s would drink. That and a spicy brownie seemed to help.
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Posted by Miss Chris 15:01 Archived in USA Tagged travel santa_fe santa_fe_school_of_cooking rv_travel rv_life Comments (0)

We Are On Our Own In Santa Fe

A trip without grandkids

semi-overcast 75 °F
View Summer Trip 3 on Miss Chris's travel map.

We only had 4 days at home, only a short time to empty the very dirty clothes and bedding, wash about 30 loads of laundry, clean the RV and repack. This time we had to pack for only Dale and me to vacation and work if we get a call out.

As usual, we had breakdowns that had to be repaired. The water pump completely quit and that took all morning and most of an afternoon. No cleaning could be done as there was no water. But Dale fixed the pump and the water output is better than ever.

We believed that we had tickets for the Santa Fe Opera so wanted to be in Santa Fe on Sunday in time for dinner, well before the opera. We wanted to leave on Sat and were able to get away in the heat of the afternoon. We didn’t care, we were on our way.
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As we neared Santa Fe I looked up RV parks. We realized that we’d never camped in Santa Fe before, we’d always gone straight to Taos. I found an RV park with good reviews so called and found that they had space for us. The Santa Fe Skies had a site on the ridge overlooking the city on 3 sides of our RV. We were amazed at our luck.

Our luck did not hold for long. I searched for the confirmation that our Opera tickets had been changed. I’d called back in May when we realized we couldn’t make the night that we held tickets for. There was no confirmation email. But, I did find an email from a dear friend asking that we attend his retirement dinner that had taken place only days before. I cannot even convey had upset I was at this point.

On Monday morning, I called the opera and found, to my dismay, that the tickets were not changed, rather went unused on the night that we could not make it to Santa Fe.
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Finally, if this is the worst that can happen on this trip we will call it a good trip. After all, how many people can visit a beautiful city, glamp with a fabulous view, and be together as we are; healthy and happy. We will not complain but rather put this one thing behind us.

Posted by Miss Chris 19:20 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip camping new_mexico glamping santa_fe rv_travel santa_fe_skies Comments (0)

A Tribute to Our Journey

Driving a million miles

Oh boy, a trip to Canada in May, a trip to Canada in June, a trip to Iceland and London in July, Grand Canyon and Petrified Forest in July/August and here we are going to leave again. I’ll blog about these other trips as I can.

In May I started an Instagram blog and as we were going along I noticed the mileage of our truck and shot a photo of the odometer. I remembered that a neighbor wanted me to let him know the mileage once in a while. What better than to keep a record by photos.

I was thinking about our truck and thought I’d pay tribute to her and the people who have made our journey possible.

Back in 2006, we had a truck that was simply not big enough to handle the RV and was difficult to get equipment in and out of by myself.

I came home, my dad was declining with his cancer treatments when we got serious. I told Dale that I only wanted a new truck, I was tired of breakdowns and struggling with equipment. We started looking.

We’d been to several lots and one salesman made me so mad when he wouldn’t discuss anything with me. We walked away and wouldn’t shop for any of their trucks.

We decided to go to "GMC Motor City". We walked in the door and the salesman, Richard listened to what I needed in a truck. He looked and found that they had just ordered a truck to be built with nearly every specification that I needed. We agreed to buy the truck upon its delivery.

Our truck came into the dealership but my dad was failing. Richard told us to come get the truck, that we’d deal with the paperwork later. We left our old vehicle at the dealership and went to my dad with the new truck.

Dale has been obsessive with our truck and with the help of a couple of mechanics, our truck keeps going and towing. A shout out to Bob Klingenberg from Eye Street Automotive who freely gives Dale advice and has loaned a tool or 2 on occasion. And to Steve Foust who also has given advice and gone beyond the call of duty with repairs.
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Our truck has been to the East Coast and Canada too many times to count. We drove our truck to Alaska and back. A friend made the comment that we have driven the circumference of the earth 19 times.
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We don’t know when we will reach the 500,000-mile mark but I’m suspecting it will be sooner than later and hopefully, the camera will be ready. We will just keep on truckin’

Posted by Miss Chris 09:23 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip travel rv_travel gmc_truck gmc_sierra Comments (0)

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