June was my exception month.
Early in the month I was in Cincinnati for the Lori Foster Reader Author Get Together. It was a blast as always. I met some incredible readers and I got to be a fangirl myself with author Amanda Usen. We authors have heros too, you know. 😉
A few days after returning, DH and I boarded a plane for Texas. It was my first time in the state for longer than the changing of airplanes. The weather was great and there was more green in san Antonio than I was expecting. Honestly though, I can’t tell you what I was expecting.
We were shuttled around because it was a really large group of people the bank had flown out for the awards ceremony…roughly 1500 employees and a guest.
The JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country was incredible and we took a couple of walks around the grounds when we had a chance. Our room had a balcony and I could be found standing out on it in the mornings watching the few holes on the golf course I could see. There was always someone playing and always at least one in a group could be heard swearing when the ball ended up in the brush. We visited the Natural Bridge Caverns which were simply amazing and I’ve been through caverns before, but these were different, very humid. The colossal creations out of Earth were simply stunning.
We spent a little while in the hill country town of Gruene. Quaint. Crowded. On the river. It was the first time I’d ever seen a Walgreen’s advertise itself as ‘Your River Supply Store’ complete with inner tubes and rafts out front for rent.
And of course, there was the famed Riverwalk. I was so in awe and I wanted more time than we actually had. Due to time constraints we only had a small window of opportunity and we walked and walked and walked. It was crowded and vibrant and colorful and… yes, very touristy. Downtown San Antonio wasn’t laid out at all how I had it pictured in my head and thank goodness I was able to walk around because I have changes to make to my books that I’ve set there.
We meandered, followed the river, ended up in an Irish Pub (In which the piano players/singer was absolutely awful. I’ve never heard Sweet Caroline quite so butchered before.), then had dinner in one of the Mexican restaurants with author Chandra Ryan and her husband.
And speaking of delicious… The food at the Marriott was simply to die for. A couple of times I thought I might do just that. Not because there was anything wrong with it, but because it was so. damn. good. and I couldn’t get enough.
My favorite meal by far was the first night we were there. It was BBQ Brisket and all the trimmings. DH and I had had a brisket spud earlier in the day which was melt in your mouth tender and succulent.
The treat I am craving more of was the strawberry jalapeno jam with mini buttermilk biscuits baked in a small cast iron skillet. It was just WOW! Chunks of strawberries, kick you in the ass heat mingled with sweetness… I can still taste it and lucky for me, a friend of DH’s has some for me and will be sending it soon.
That was a first for me.
Another first for me was… coffee beer. I know I’ve said before that I don’t do beer, at least not for drinking, but I saw the waiter pass by with a bottle on his tray that said Coffee Porter. Well, if anyone knows what a coffee whore I am, they’d know I couldn’t pass up the chance to give it a try.
I did get the real thing every morning. There was a Starbucks in the resort. It was about a 1/4 mile from where our hotel room was located, or seemed that far, but it was worth it.
I left San Antonio with a strong desire to go back. I want to see all the things I didn’t see. I want to do all the things I didn’t have a chance to do. I want to bask in how alive it is, how diverse, how beautiful.
And of course, I couldn’t leave without bringing home a new coffee mug… It says, “Sometimes a Cowgirl has to do what a Cowboy can’t”
While I was gone, I received edits on the second book in my Bar Next Door series, Eli’s Promise which comes out December 10, and since I’ve been back I’ve been working hard on finishing the writing of a new contemporary erotic romance, Slide Down On Me.
I can’t wait to get to work again on my series which I’ve set in San Antonio so I can incorporate some of the things I was able to see.
Being a writer, y’all… It’s amazing.