Sunday, May 7
We decided we should go see an expo called Rain in the afternoon as well as rent bikes through the Houston B Cycle today and both activities exceeded our expectations!
We signed up for the B Cycle on-line for a monthly pass so that we could have unlimited rides of up to 60 minutes for free (well, for $9 each as the registration fee). The bikes were a bit heavy, but there were many places to replace the bikes along the downtown cycle path and along the bayou path. We had a bit of trouble renting the first bike, but apparently that was because some of the bikes get stuck in the dispenser-lock thing and then the card gets rejected. But after we solved that, it was all good. We headed out back towards the park and cycled along the bayou path for about an hour until we reached the Lost Lake and the Dunlavy restaurant. We parked the bikes an walked around, enjoying the heat and the wildflowers and the bridge where all the bats come out at night. (We could only hear them right now as they were all stuck up between the concrete crevices of the bridge)
The amount of greenery was stunning. It isn’t something I would expect to see in downtown Houston. It was warm and beautiful and very tropical. I guess I am too used to going to Arizona!
We searched again for the mysterious red button and finally found it. We found it on top of the bridge instead of along the cycle path. And we pushed it and “Burped the Bayou”. It was funny. Gotta love adult scavenger hunting for no reason. 🙂
After another couple of hours at the pool, we got all ready for dinner and for the art display. I managed to not get us too lost walking from the hotel over to the other side of the bayou to find the Buffalo Bayou Park cistern. The cistern in Houston covers more than 87,500 square feet of space and has over 200 columns. It had been used for water storage and purification back in the day and was repurposed for an art and public centre in 2016.
The art expo called Rain was an audio and image display created by Venezuelan artist, Magdalena Fernández. It is a video-projection piece that is displayed on the columns and is reflected on the small amount of water remaining on the cistern floor. The acoustics are impressive as the sounds echoes throughout the enclosed, dark space. The audio was actually created by a Slovenian choir where children snapped their fingers, clapped their hands and stomped their feet to emulate the rain and the audio track was then edited by Magdalena Fernández in order for it to fit her 2 minute visual display.
The whole time we were in the dark cistern was approximately 20 Minutes as the 2 minute track was replayed about 10 times or so as we walked along the upper pedestrian walkway. It was so peaceful and intriguing as the images and sounds seemed to change depending on where we were located in the cistern. It was a really cool experience and a unique way to preserve an old site.
We headed back to the downtown area and went to Pappadeaux Seafood Kitchen – which was crazy busy, but we did finally find a place to sit outside to enjoy the end of our day.