USA Extravaganza 2013

I had several goals for J’s first visit to the United States, most of them food-related. Here’s a breakdown of how the USA Cultural Food Immersion Extravaganza 2013 is going so far.

1. Food. We’ve been in San Antonio for four days now, and here is what I have made Ju eat so far:

  • Modern Tex-mex at Urban Taco
  • Street Mexican food at La Gloria (I nearly burnt my tongue off on the spiciest shrimp I’ve ever eaten)
  • Good beer and burgers from the Blue Star Brewery
  • Excellent pork tenderloin from the Boardwalk Bistro
  • Cheesecake from the Boardwalk Bistro
  • Blue Moon, Shiner, Sam Adams, New Belgium beers
  • Texas barbecue at Augie’s
  • Amy’s ice cream (and Blue Bell from the grocery store)
  • Girl Scout cookies (samoas)
  • Bagels and cream cheese
  • A danish from the Pearl Brewery Farmers Market
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Augie’s

At the Boardwalk Bistor. Happy Frenchman.

At the Boardwalk Bistro. Happy Frenchman.

So far the only thing he hasn’t liked is root beer. But the cheesecake was a big win, as well as the Texas barbecue. Phew.

2. Shopping. Besides gift shopping at the White Sands visitors center, which has a lovely gift shop, Ju also went crazy at the San Antonio REI, buying enough clothes for him for the next three years. We discovered he left his polar fleece at Hueco, so we went to a store called Good Sports today in San Antonio, which we liked a lot, and he got two new fleeces while I stocked up on Smartwool socks.

3. Culturally, we’ve been doing a lot of things as well.

At the Pearl Brewery Friday night, we walked down to the Museum Reach of the river.

The Museum Reach in the evening

The Museum Reach in the evening

We took a few pictures with the Day of the Dead-themed statues in front of the restaurant (La Gloria).

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Saturday morning, we went back to the Pearl for the farmers’ market, where we got this serving of paella for free after a cooking demonstration.

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This was Ju’s—I just got the mussles, not this scary-looking shrimp thing.

Saturday, we also went to the San Antonio Rodeo and Livestock Show, which was on its final weekend.

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We got a look at some of the steers before they were auctioned off. They were huge.

We got a look at some of the steers before they were auctioned off. They were huge.

We also saw a steer-driving competition.

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The cowboys/girls waiting to compete

As you can see in the video, a team of two had to drive the steers, one by one, in order, into the other pen. The judge announced over the loudspeaker which number they had to start with.

 We also went to the Alamo,
The Alamo was setting up for the reception of the Travis letter

The Alamo was setting up for the reception of the Travis letter.

Mission Concepcion,

P1010924and Mission San Jose.

P1010928Today we went to see the campus my mom works at, with their rattlesnake statue.

This poster was in my mom's office. The lose/loose business attracted our attention especially for all the French people out there...

This poster was in my mom’s office. The lose/loose business attracted our attention especially for all the French people out there…

The St Mary's University mascot is a rattlesnake.

The St Mary’s University mascot is a rattlesnake.

And now we are bizarrely in the middle of a windstorm the likes of which I have never seen. So we saved the outdoor things for later and finished the day at the Institute of Texas Cultures, near downtown San Antonio. Tomorrow we’ll go to Austin, and later this week we hope to go to the San Antonio botanical gardens.

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