Sunday, December 23, 2007

"THE" Re-Union : Day Six

23 December 2002:
Austin, TX: We were all pretty early as we had a lot to travel to SanAntonio in the morning and return to College Station that very night. This was a sort-of-treacherous route w/o any interstates and only lonely, neglected State Highways. We had taken the directions for San Antonio and as told by my cousin, River View was supposed to be the best location in city. With correct and precise direction taken through MapQuest ( ?? :D ) we left for the Spurs' hometown.

San Antonio, TX: The skyline was visible from quite afar and then we started drifting away from the city. But we ensured to follow the directions as seen on the print-outs and reached River View Drive or Way !! We had crossed the main city and now found ourselves looking at a drain and wondering whether that was infact the desired destination. After quizzing a few along the way, we realized that we had hopelessly lost our way and that River View was in Downtown SanAntonio. But, just then we saw driving direction to the Zoo which was about a mile from the place we were.

SanAntonio Zoo, TX: This was the day when 5 adults decided to shed all inhibitions and act like 3 year olds. We had paid a decent sum of amount to the zoo keepers and made it a point to make every cent count. The zoo was itself pretty huge which animals ranging from 1 tiger to 1 elephant to 1 bear, multiple types of monkeys (there were 5 who were let loose to entertain others ;) ). The best part was that there was a lot of room for all animals and nor were they caged in a cramped place like we had in Peshwe Park previously. There was "some" natural surrounding that was created for each animal and also safety of viewers was also ensured by making huge pits between the Animal area and Viewing Area.
There was this one particular type of tiger/leopard/panther whom Godya wanted to capture as he looked dead-straight at the camera. Unfortunately for all us he never did and we spent about 50 clicks on eyes, ears, tails, abdomen of that feline.

Has anyone of you watched the movie "Birds" by Hitchcock ? Never before had I thought about birds as scary and able to outfight humans, manly ego I guess. But that was again a work of fiction we would suppose. However as we entered a bird-cage, mostly with species of parrots, parakeets all the fear could be actually experienced. We were in their area and it was really frightening when they decided to fly from one tree to the other in the enclosed area. We would have been able to capture a couple of parrots sitting on Ameya's shoulders had Mr. Photos not clicked too many features of a tiger and exhausted the batteries.
The nicest scene was of one parakeet removing the Cap of the bird-keeper as kept interacting with other people.

We had a light snack quite early on and then left after having a comprehensive visit of the park left for the actual River View.

RiverView, SanAntonio, TX: This has got to be the most romantic spot in this arid state and definitely the most crowded. (In the meantime we had obtained fresh set of batteries) Then we had a round of photos taken along the banks of the manmade channels and then moved around the area. Each one of us surely dreamt of visiting this place with their to-be someones at some point later in life :) We had moved a lot during the day and the outputted energy had hopelessly outnumbered the inputted one. There was a provision to have dinner as people undertook a boat ride in the water bed but we passed on as it was too expensive and the line was quite lengthy as well.Atul then treated us (just one the many he belted out at multiple places) at a very special Mexican Restaurant for supper. The food was definitely wonderful but the ambience just added the correct spice to the wonderful moment.
The picture taken by our table attendant also came out very well against the backdrop of the punts, boats.

The last destination for the day was "Tower of Americas" which consists of a revolving restaurant and a viewing-gallery on 3 huge pillars. It was not at all difficult locating the towers however finding the approach took very long as we kept on circling the roads around it. Finally we found a parking lot from where we could walk to the base of the tower.Just then there was a violent thunderstorm that lashed the city like crazy. It lasted for something like 15-20 mins which felt like eternity. There were trash cans kept along the pavements being uprooted and strewn across the roads. We took shelter near a convention center for some time and then the others (barring me) left for the tower. I was terribly scared to move but followed them as the storm subsided.

Tower of Americas, SanAntonio, TX: We moved in to the soothing comment that we would not be able to visit the viewing gallery due to the lightning and thunderstorm. The good news was that the elevators were going to take us to the hotel and that we were not going to be charged for it !! We must've climbed about 75 odd meters in a matter of some seconds and that too in a glass escalator. With the speed of the elevator and the sudden stop gives a giddy feeling. Thankfully none of required any plastic bags but there was a feeling that the floor was moving. We went a little further to view the city from a bar area (which does not revolve) but did not venture out on the revolving floor. Heartbreak was in store for Ameya and Godu when they saw a stunning young lady in a cocktail dress move in to dine with a much older gentleman.
And lastly we had a snap taken in which my friends compelled (like they always do) me give a crazy pose !!

This was definitely The Best Day I had during our 8 day trip



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