When I’m on business trips for work in new cities, one of my favorite ways to see the town is by going on a run. So when I was in San Antonio last week for work, I was really excited that my hotel was kind of right downtown on the riverwalk.
I’d heard the riverwalk was really pretty, and when I took a stroll on my first night in town to find a place to eat dinner, I enjoyed some of the sights and sounds.
Plus I had a little friend join me for dinner.
However, on the walk back home, it was starting to get dark and the riverwalk was starting to creep me out. Part of it was pretty isolated and dark, and I noticed some questionable characters hanging around.
I made it back to the hotel without any incident, but it made me a little nervous about my run in the morning.
I ended up bumping my running start time back the following morning to wait until the sun was all the way up. I had a pretty unsettling feeling in my gut about running around San Antonio in the dark.
The run itself was fine. But I didn’t listen to music and I was hyperaware of my surroundings. I only passed a handful of other runners the whole time, and I couldn’t shake the eerie feeling of isolation and vulnerability.
That evening when my work stuff wrapped up, I walked the 10-15 minutes from my hotel to the Alamo to explore.
The Alamo closes pretty early, and I was heading back to the hotel around 5:45. I should note it was still broad daylight, and I was pretty much right downtown where there were lots of other people — basically a place you’d feel pretty safe normally.
I was walking along minding my own business when a very aggressive, very shady character approached me and asked me if I had money for drugs. True story, didn’t even pretend like he wanted the money for food or something. Points for honesty, I guess?
I was also catcalled at multiple by creepy old dudes in cars or on motorcycles. I have never in my life felt so harassed or unsafe in a city.
Perhaps needless to say, the next morning I did my run in the safety of the hotel gym. The treadmill is awful, but it seemed a lot better than the alternative.
Let’s just say, I’m really happy to be home.