Ah, after a short sleep, we are off to San Antonio. This is where my aunt and Grandma live but today we are visiting with our friends son, Nick Shimel, who is in the Navy but is stationed at Fort Sam Houston for training. Army base, Navy there - and the Air Force, too!
Anyway, through a comical morning trying to dump tanks (after 11 days this was very necessary if you know what I mean), we stopped at the Spurs stadium. We were not impressed. No reference to the Spurs anywhere and it was just not that impressive.
So off to downtown and Bill was going to drop Mikayla and I and go pick up Nick and his friend, Sebastian, but we thought San Antonio was not very "safe". It was 4th of July weekend so was probably just very busy. We drove the RV to the gate and parked. Mikayla and I took the Jeep and went and picked up the boys and got lost a couple times looking for the gate. I dropped off Nick, Sebastian and my baby near the Riverwalk and went back for Bill and William. We walked all over the River Walk area and decided we were hungry. We stopped at Lonestar and had lunch. It was ok. Mikayla and I shared a plate of bbq and I even had a margarita.. we talked but it was hard to hear so I was happy to leave so I could hear the basic training storms which were pretty interesting coming from a very non-military family.
We walked the mall area and then discovered the U S O! I have never been to to the USO so that was a great fabulous first for my birthday. They even had cake. It was nice and had tvs, video, pool tables, and food! It was in the same structure as we parked. Hopefully Nick and Sebastian found a new place to hang as I think they get bored.
Mikayla and Sebastian played a game of pool and then Bill and I left to take the kids back to the Alfa Dog and then Bill went back for them. A quick trip to the MH and then back to the base.
Nick was in uniform all day! He looked really sharp and we are so proud of him. We have know him since he was 11 so it is different to see them all grown up. He was so polite and courteous to all we met. Having known and joked with him for years it was truly special. Our friend Mary, mom of Nick, has ALL of her boys in the military. Steven, who is in the Army, is in Afghanastan, Craig (her hubby), is being deployed shortly, and Tyson, who served in Iraq and is in the reserves but may deploy again. She also has a daughter who is a teacher. It is families like this that keep us free and able to live the lives of liberty that we do. I salute all the military this independence weekend but want to thank the Shimel's for bringing the reality of it all to me. They are a special class of people.
Now about Sebastian. He is a German citizen getting his US citizenship. I had no idea you could serve in the US military prior to citizenship. He started out pretty quiet, but opened up after a while. He is married and his wife lives in Florida. His father has a practice in Germany and studies embryos and does cell research for cancer. Wow is all I can say. I could have listened all night.
A special thank you to both of them for spending my birthday with me. I will always remember it as a great albeit yet another hot day.
After dropping them off, we headed east on our way to Houston.
Pictures will follow as i am typing on the phone