It is no secret that I love San Antonio. In fact, it is the very opposite of a secret. I talk about San Antonio more than anyone has a right to, certainly more than anyone around me wants to hear. I love the food, the music, the art, the skyline. I especially love the people.
As I write this, I am sitting on the non-tourist section of the Riverwalk - the length of artificial river that stretches north of the Alamo. Across the river is a publicart piece of a cave (those who ventured to Le Marche with me also know how much I love a good cave). Passerbys find it impossible to pass through the cave without inspecting it, although nothing ever changes. Every few seconds someone passes me, usually jogging or with a dog. Often both. Either way, they smile and wave. An exciteable middle-aged gentleman just took a photo of me holding a small plastic turtle for a street photography project. Shortly after, I complimented a family on their matching Italy-themed umbrellas.
I'm amazed with San Antonio because it is a city with everything. there is a peace down here by the river, but chaos a mile south. It lacks the ancientness of Rome or the delicacy of Paris. Buildings less than half the age of the Vatican have mostly crumbled into a pile of tan dust, save for a few corners here and there. It is not the crossroads of the universe, as Paris is, but rather the crossroads of here. San Antonio contains every possible sub culture, existing in a happy bubble, ready to be explored.
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<p>My name is Kelli Hallmark and I'm a Trinity University student studying abroad in Rome for the summer. I first came to Italy when I was in junior high and fell deeply, madly, in love with the warmth and joy of Italian culture. I am currently double majoring in Religion and Art History, with aspirations to go into museum programming. In my free time I like to read everything in sight, write poetry and fiction, and make my own cosmetics.</p>