Coming to this conference makes me realize their true and inherent value, mainly that there exists – if I can steal from J. G. A. Pocock – a multiplex of views on just about any topic. This broadmindedness keeps an historian honest, or any scholar for that matter. Reflecting upon that last statement, I am a world away from where I used to be, seeing the world only through my eyes, from my own particular position upon the globe, within a certain social status or perhaps (if it is easier for my readers to follow) from the point of view of just “some guy,” some schmuck, some not so solitary wonderer who – though slighted – does not understand the slight.

Here, in San Antonio, among the skyscrapers, the marbled and tiled foyers of mega hotels, alongside the concrete and bricked lined river, the “la villita,” the broad roads that weave a meshed pattern through miles of downtown: here, there is a power, a presence, a force, unleashed from the whispers of the Alamo that now run like concentric circles forging away from where the stone was dropped into the still green colored waters: and this force came with freeways.

But this is not the only force. There are others. Silent. Waiting. Salient. Perhaps, these forces understand the slight.

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