Friday, 4 September 2015

Photographing the Differences

I like to capture the differences when travelling.
You know, the things that you just 
wouldn't see "at home".
 I'm guessing that Park Peace Officers must 
be like park rangers. 
Some aspects of the right to bear arms leaves me baffled. 
 Mail boxes? 
 How come they're not like the ones we grew up seeing in films?
 Historical markers?  Yes, the UK has those.
Funny ones? Not so much.
My new monthly read.  Not.
My particular favourite.
What catches your eye when travelling?

Thursday, 3 September 2015

San Antonio's River Walk

One of the big surprises about San Antonio
was the River Walk.
It's amazing!

The River Walk is considered to be 
a slice of Europe in the heart of San Antonio, Texas. 
It's no ordinary riverfront; it's a fantastic canal and pedestrian street,
right in the heart of the city.
Sure, it's busy in the summer months and you need 
to cover yourself in bug spray 
if you're likely to be there at dusk.
But, wow, it's fabulous!
Each side of the canal is lined with cafes, restaurants and bars.
{this pub sponsored a visit by a few Chelsea Pensioners a few years ago.
Our beloved Grandad P. was a lucky recipient of that generosity.} 
There's opportunity to overfeed your child with ice-cream.
So much so that they later throw up in the bath.
There are plenty of bridges, 
so it's easy to walk so far down one side and then back up the other.
Riverwalk is a tremendous asset to San Antonio and to think
that it came into being thanks to a 
flood alleviation scheme in the 1920s. 

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

New Beginnings | Year 4

 He went back to school today
and into Year 4.
The beginning of his fifth year of full-time schooling.
Did you spot anything different?
Regular readers may have noticed a different uniform.
Back in January, at Statement Review time, 
we asked for a change of school
and, four months later, were denied our initial choice of school.
Six months later we were still pushing for a change of school. 
Being constantly on the 'phone to Children's Services.
Visiting schools in our area.
Asking questions, questions, questions.
Receiving confirmation of a placement we believed would work.
Arranging transition sessions.
Buying a whole new uniform; only the white shirts are the same. 
Worrying, worrying, worrying. 
Are we doing the right thing?
Should we leave him where he is?
The day is here and worrying is pointless.
He's gone off happily.
Now we wait.  

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Month in Numbers | August 2015

With the arrival of September,
here's a look at Awesome August | the American Edition:
We have, in no particular order ..
6: the number of times we visited a Community Pool.  Such a great idea.
4,207: the number of miles between London and Atlanta.  Approximately.
1,083: the number of photos taken by me during 24 days in the United States of America.  Crazy!
36: the number of pieces of Happy Mail sent by us during our stay in the United States of America.
Postcards were hard to find and I resorted to making my own.
1,183: the number of Texan miles driven by us.
  That's an awful lot of getting out and about!  And all on the wrong side of the road!
701: the number of air miles between Atlanta, Ga. and Houston, Tx.

Month in Numbers is the brainchild of Julie
and you'll always find a warm welcome over at her place. 
 Not to mention entertaining posts about a varied list of topics.
Go on over, stop by and say hello. 

Monday, 31 August 2015

On Granny's Orders

Like most teenagers, The Nephew is reluctant 
to appear in family photos.
I nag.
I cajole.
I tell him that Granny wants photos of him.
Of him with his cousin.
Of him with his mum.
And that usually works.

I have to try a different tactic with his dad ...
BiL's not scared of Granny!

Sunday, 30 August 2015

The Alamo Cenotaph | In Photos

is one of the most beautiful memorials.
I have ever seen
(and I know something about memorials).  
A fitting tribute.

Saturday, 29 August 2015

Warrior Wedding | Part Two

I knew that a cousin or two would have snapped
some photos of me, The Brainy One and The Boy Child
when we attended the Warrior Wedding.
I just had to be patient.

They were worth the wait.

Friday, 28 August 2015

The Alamo

We Brits have heard of the Alamo and of Davy Crockett.
But that's about the limit of our knowledge. 
 The Alamo is held in the highest regard by all Texans
 (and, I'm assuming, most Americans).
 I may have sneaked a photo (on museum setting) ...
 Here's a potted history: the Alamo played a
critical role in the Texas Revolution in 1836.
The Mexican army had the Alamo under siege for 13 days
and their final assault ended with the massacre of almost 200 defenders, 
including James Bowie (of the knife fame), Davy Crockett (he of the furry hat)
and William Travis (the Garrison commander and only 26 years old).    
The Alamo is remembered as an heroic struggle against overwhelming odds
- a place where men made the ultimate sacrifice for freedom.
For this reason, the Alamo remains hallowed ground
and the Shrine of Texas Liberty.  
So there you have it.
The Boy Child may have been persuaded 
to channel his inner Davy Crockett.

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Road Trip

San Antonio, I love you!
We drove West for three hours,
along a road that reminded of the A96
in North East Scotland.
 We found a small city, a friendly city,
an oh-my-goodness-it's-hot city. 
 With plenty of beautiful architecture.
 And history.
 All easily accessible on foot.
And did I mention postcards?

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Veterans' Museum

I'm like a moth to a flame.
Having taken The Brainy One and The Boy Child
to the CAF, I followed it up
with a visit to the local
Veterans' Museum.
 All wars in which America has fought are covered in the Museum.
The majority of the exhibits cover WWII, Vietnam,
 Iraq and Afghanistan. 
 The Museum is run by volunteers and all have served
in a war zone overseas.
 We like to indulge in a spot of gentle teasing.
You know, things like, "Um, actually, WWII began in September 1939,
not on 7 December 1941."
Our guide was a Vietnam USAAF veteran called Jim,
and he was keen to press home that freedom isn't free.
There's always a price to be paid. 
Museums like these are absolute gems. 
I'd recommend a visit if you come across one
in any travels in America.
And for my American friends, see if your town
has such a Museum, and then stop by.