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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.
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.
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.
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)

Another State, Another Restaurant

It's about friends and food

sunny 75 °F

If someone doesn’t know us, they’d probably wonder how we have so many favorite restaurants and do we do anything besides eat. We were laughing about this over breakfast and realized that we are only in the southern part of the US. We have many more favorites in other states.

And so from New Orleans we drove straight to Houston, TX, to meet a dear friend and co-worker, Jim and of course eat. This time we went to his favorite place, a little French Bistro.

The restaurant isn’t fancy but really nice. We felt mostly fine in our jeans but there were also people in formal wear. Maybe we just felt fine because we didn’t pay attention. But the food was very French and such a treat, as we’ve been eating lots of local, hole in the wall foods. Unfortunately, I couldn’t eat the sauces but I enjoyed my pork chop, and Dale his Canard A la Orange. Jim had wild boar. With mussels for an appetizer and a nice pinot, we were happy campers.

But, the best part was visiting with our friend, we haven’t had much time to visit since we were all in Boston. We’d really gotten to know each other when we worked the Richmond Fire about 3 years ago. We did some nice dinners and wine tasting together in the Sacramento area, so it was great to just sit down and catch up.

After dinner, we drove to the next rest stop intending to make it to San Antonio and Mi Tierra’s for breakfast. Mi Tierra’s has been a favorite for many years.

We knew that my grandfather had worked in the area in the early 1930’s. We have a photo of my grandfather standing by the produce truck he drove with my father and uncles as children. My grandfather worked with the bananas. We believed that the basement of Mi Tierra’s had been the banana distribution center and had learned, on one trip, that there was a basement that had been used for produce.

This trip, I mentioned to the waitress that my grandfather had likely worked in the basement, she went and got her manager. The manager verified that the banana distribution took place in the basement. She said that the owner is the 3rd generation which would mean that my grandfather would have worked for his grandfather. Small world.

The owner requested that we send a photo of my grandfather with the truck and they will put it on the wall. There is also a chance that at some point we might get to tour the basement.
Chilaquiles recipe has changed, they use to put strips of chilies in but now leave them out because the chilies are too hot. We will go for other dishes next time and of course the pan dolce.

Posted by Miss Chris 09:42 Archived in USA Tagged food road_trip travel friends rv houston san_antonio Comments (0)

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