Thursday, March 20, 2014

San Antonio Missions


With Terry out of town Wednesday I was on my own and came up with a whole bunch of ideas to entertain myself.  Of course, entertaining myself has rarely been a problem for me.  My problem is that there just isn’t enough time in the day or every place we happen to be to do everything I want to do.  I wasn’t sure if I’d take this day off and just relax with a book or whether I’d play tourist …. again.  Being tourist won out.   My mission for the day ….. to check out one of the San Antonio Missions or maybe two of them.

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Mission Concepcion

San Antonio is home to the Missions National Historical Park.  Within a few miles there are four missions and to top that off there is no fee.  it is part of the National Park Service with guides at a couple of them and even a Visitor’s Center for more information.  If you're interested in more information about the missions, click on the link above.  Some websites indicate there are five missions and not just four.  I may have missed one!

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Mission Concepcion
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Mission Concepcion
The first mission is just 2.8 miles south of the Alamo so it’s not a great distance from town.  My plan was to visit only the closest one, Mission Concepcion.  My trusty little Garmin indicated Mission Road was a mere 12 miles from our RV park so once rush hour traffic was over, I was on my way.

We’ve  been to bunches of old cathedrals, churches, missions and religious places all over the world.  They all have their own history.  These missions were clean and gorgeous and not filled with a lot of religious relics like many we’ve seen.  I’m not sure what I was expecting on my tour of the missions but it was really surprised and impressed with what I saw.  The best word I can think of is --  WOW.

Mission Concepcion was the first place I stopped.  Like several of the other missions, this one was transferred from East Texas to this location in 1731.  According to what I read the missions all look pretty much the same today as they did in that time.  This was a gorgeous mission and after checking it out I decided I just had to see Mission San Jose.  It was only another 2.8 miles down Mission Road and there was no way I could pass it up since I was so close. 

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Mission San Jose
The San Jose Mission had been described as the “Queen of Missions” and it was definitely huge.  I could certainly see why it was called the Queen.  The mission was like a fort with walls for protection and many rooms around the perimeter.  The only trouble I had at this place was getting people to get out of the way so I could take pictures.

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Mission San Jose
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Mission San Jose
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Mission San Jose
At this point I had walked through two missions but there were just two more on Mission Rd.  I knew if I didn’t check out the next one I would always regret it.  So, a little south I went to take a look at Mission San Juan Capistrano.  Just like Concepcion this mission was also moved from East Texas to its current location on San Antonio River’s east bank in 1731. 

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Mission San Juan Capistrano

The last mission in this area was the earliest of the missions.  Mission Espada was founded in 1690 and moved to it’s current location, again, in 1731.

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Mission Espada

All the missions were different but they were all awesome.  I couldn’t imagine just visiting one when there was no more than 3 miles between each of them.  The missions were scattered a short distance from each other.  In their time they were all pretty self sufficient and supported the nearby settlements with fields, trades and livestock.

This was a wonderful day!  I think I made the right choice and had a great time.  Next on my list wasn't as much fun.  I needed to figure out how to get Terry out of Portland and back to where Duchess and I were.  I already knew that was not going to be an easy task.  March definitely is not the month to be any place without reservations and that doesn’t matter whether you’re on the road or in the air.  I spent the rest of the day on Wednesday calling the different airlines to check loads on their flights. Almost everything was sold out.  I knew it was going to be bad but then, I got excited when I found an early morning United flight to San Francisco with 7 open seats.  However, the excitement soon disappeared when I discovered it also had 18 of their employees standing by for those seats.  Nope …. that wouldn’t work.

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Mission Espada

I did have an option for Terry but he wasn’t interested.  I figured he could take the Wednesday overnight flight from Portland to Charlotte and then grab a morning flight back to Dallas and on to San Antonio.  My thought was that he could sleep on the plane so what difference did it make??  That’s what I would have done but he wasn’t interested.   Thus, he was stuck all day Thursday at the airport.  We figured Seattle would offer more options so this evening we bought a ticket to Seattle.  That was one of the few flights they would still sell a ticket or two on.  Hopefully, that flight won't be cancelled like a few others have been and we'll be able to start this all over again on Friday with a whole new set of flights to investigate. The flights aren't good in Seattle either but at least there are more of them.  Hopefully, he'll be back before our time is up here in San Antonio.



‘Tis life on the road.


The scientific theory I like best is that the rings of Saturn are composed entirely of lost airline luggage.

13 comments:

  1. "I’d take this day off and just relax with a book". Jeri, I don't think you even know how to relax and do nothing !! LOL

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  2. Those missions are beautiful and I can't believe you got all those pictures without some people in them. Sure hope Terry gets home without too much more hassle.

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  3. We did the mission's a couple of years ago. We took the tour bus to them. Your pictures are great.

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  4. You had a wonderful day of discovering. We loved all those Missions. Our tour of Mission Concepcion was excellent.
    WOW...hope y'all can get those flights in order. Maybe you two will meet up again one day...lol

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  5. I need to sign up for your class on "Booking Cheap Airline Tickets". You seem to have the magic touch.

    Amazing those missions, how well they've held up to the 250+ years. To think they were built by hand, too. Modern day buildings will never last that long. Only layovers in airports will last that long...don't ask me how I know. ;c)

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  6. Gorgeous pictures Jeri. I can't wait.

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  7. Hi Jeri,
    We love the missions too. There are five missions, but only four in the National Park Service. The fifth mission is The Alamo (Mission San Antonio de Valero). The Alamo is overseen by the Texas General Land Office and The Daughters of the Republic of Texas are in charge of the daily operation of The Alamo.

    I love all your spirit of adventure!

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  8. We loved the San Antonio area when we visited a few years back and plan to revisit again soon! Hope Terry gets back without too many delays or hassles!

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  9. Thank you--new items on our bucket list!

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  10. Nice tour of the missions, maybe today you can relax with a book????

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  11. Beautiful photos of the San Antonia Missions - I love visiting the ones we run across in California. Thanks for a great tour!

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  12. Seems to me that Terry might be home by now - since I am late reading this. You have provided us with more to see in San Antonio! Thanks for the tour. Those missions are so neat!

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  13. Your pictures are beautiful......what an awesome "alone time" day you had! And a must see for us if we are ever in the area again. WOW has certainly become one of our most used words these days.

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Thanks for taking the time to comment.