Sunday, December 9, 2007

My Dallas Adventure

My son and I and our wives were invited to the Christmas party hosted by one of our development associates. Our wives couldn't go but we decided to go and to use the occasion for a tour of several developments in the Dallas area. Three were completed by our host and we also looked at several others because we're still getting ideas we might use in the future for our farm.

It was a fast paced and quick trip so we packed a lot of stuff into a little time. Most of what we did would not be interesting to anyone else. And it wouldn't have interested me not terribly long ago. It is funny now how we pay attention to parking and materials used in building retail centers and how the signs are placed and many details about residential areas Funny because I never even thought about those things a few months ago and now they loom important in my mind. So I will not write about those elements.

Dallas is so much more densely populated than is Oklahoma City. Dallas is rated as the 4th largest metropolitan area in the United States. Oklahoma City is 45th. The first thing noticeable is the traffic. I lived in the Dallas area in 1998 before I came to live with mom and dad. I think this was my first prolonged return and it wasn't really very long. But the place has changed a lot - basically more and more of everything.

We were near the Dallas Tollway and I-635 at one point on Wednesday. We were in the parking lot of a retail center. A man approached the car. He said that he was very embarrassed to ask for help but his car was broken down and he and his family needed some money to spend the night. I had $20 in my pocket and I gave it to him. I know it was probably a scam and there probably wasn't a car or a family anywhere. But there might of been and either way the $20 meant a lot more to him than it did to me.

It was about 5 pm or so when we made our way to our hotel, The Adolphus. May not sound like much but we were pretty proud of ourselves for getting there in the middle of Dallas traffic at 5 pm. It is an old hotel dating from 1912. The name is from Adolphus Busch of the beer family. It is a great old hotel and we had a very nice room there.

My son chose it because of its proximity to the Dallas Petroleum Club where our party was hosted. We walked there and it took 15 or 20 minutes probably. We definitely didn't want to drive.

Our party was two floors (I think) under the bottom of that hole in the building. We went up one floor before we left and walked around on the floor just below the hole. It is called a sky lobby. Pretty impressive. It is a little hard to see in the image but there's a kind of area that juts out from the wall of the building. It is kind of triangular I guess and you can walk out on it and it is on every floor until you get up to that hole. It is pretty disorienting to stand out there on that little slice of building.

Our invitations were hand written using calligraphy. I kept mine - work of art in itself. It said to wear cocktail dress. I had to search the Internet to discover what that meant. I wore a black coat and dark slacks and shirt and tie. There were a lot of people there and I think I was dressed appropriately. But I know it is a little easier to dress gents than the ladies.

You didn't have to hunt food or drink at this party. There were servers wandering around with trays of food and they came to you. And others took your drink order and then filled it and then hunted you down, even if you moved. No cash bar here at this deal. That was just the appetizers of course. The real food was on rather large tables and there was lots of different things and all of them were exceedingly good. My favorite was the really excellent prime rib and the pepper encrusted venison. The inexhaustible supply of shrimp was pretty outstanding, too.

Mainly this was a party where you mingled about with all sorts of others. It isn't exactly my best venue but I can mingle if I must and I did.

Of considerable note and notice, although pretty much lost on me, was the presence of a retired football player, Troy Aikman. Now I knew who he was but I'm not much of a football (or any other sports) fan - unless my kids or grandkids are playing. So this was a much bigger deal for my son than it was for me. He is about a foot taller than I am and his hand just swallowed mine. He was extremely approachable and very, very nice though. I just muttered that I was happy to meet him. He said he was happy to meet me, too, but I kind of think he was just being pleasant.

Actually he is from Henryetta, Oklahoma. I didn't know this but he played at OU for a while and left after being injured. My son said that was probably a good thing. Ironically he later joined the Dallas Cowboys under Barry Switzer who was also the coach at OU at that time. My son says Aikman has 3 Super Bowl rings and a bunch of other honors.

My son said he concentrated on trying not to make too big a fool of himself when he shook hands with Mr. Aikman. He says in retrospect he could have done a lot better.

We had a good time and walked back over to our hotel about 10 pm. We were both so tired.

The next day we drove all over the Dallas area visiting one development after another. There's a lot of tollways in Dallas so we finally stopped and bought one of the Texas Toll Tags so we wouldn't have to mess with change.

We had lunch at a very good Mexican place in Southlake, TX. That was very cool and I had heard so much about this city. It was a great experience to actually visit in person.

Then we made it back to Oklahoma finally.

I'm still recovering.

My excellent adventure.


Lori1955 said...

Sounds like a good trip. I think it's good that you got to spend the time with your son, just the guys.

~Betsy said...

My husband would LOVE to meet Troy Aikman! He was one heck of a QB.

I'm glad you had a nice trip. The hotel was pretty fancy!

Susan M said...

..Southlake, you were in Southlake? You probably were in Mi Cocina. Would you like to buy a house in Southlake?

Hopefully ours is sold. But we won't know until a few days from now.

Glad you had a good time in northern Texas. Some days I wish we hadn't moved, but then we couldn't have shared our last days with Mom.

flintysooner said...

It was a great time to spend with my son. Besides he drove.

Why yes it was Mi Cocina and was my first time. My kids told me about it though during my caregiving years. So it was nice to finally enjoy it.

Don't need a house there but we like the design and layout of the place and hope to incorporate some of the ideas used there in our own work but on a much smaller scale.

Thanks so much for letting me know - makes the experience even better.

rilera said...

I enjoyed reading about 'Flinty's Excellent Adventure'! I'm glad you were able to spend time with your son.

SKYGIRL said...

Well, I am certainly glad you decided to forgo the cocktail dress? Some how I can not picture it being a good 'look' for You!

And speaking of things that would not interest many people...he..he..hum..I FINALLY was able to post 1/3 of my little (turns out gigantic!) Video I made for you, and posted it on my "Blog!"

"WHEW!" I thought I was a quick study...but..nooooooo!

So go take a peak,turn up your volume, and the only thing I cut out was a little talk with the local police, and some employees, seeming to be up to no good, which has turned into a standing joke with them!

So nice of you to give that Man $20.00 dollars, too bad you couldn't have talked to him a little more, and heard his story.

Now, I feel a little less embarrassed, about the construction workers, and the work talking place, while making my first Video!

Don't hold your breath, but the "Inside Rosauers" is much better, and had allot of 'peeps' in it, talking with me, like a News Paper Reporter! Fun!

SKYGIRL said...

Good Afternoon Flinty! Checking on you & the "Ice Storm!" Just called my Sister in O.C. and her electricity is "OUT!" The news doesn't look too encouraging either? Let us know!

I just posted 2 out of three Videos, that I made for you on my Blog, so go take a peak. And do you know how I can invite you or others to my YouTube Account, without giving 'them' your E-Mail Addies?

I'd like to keep it Private, although it defaults "Public" over & over again. I, like you, am not impressed with the process at YouTube!

Hope you are warm & safe, and have lights!

cornbread hell said...

boy do i feel dumb. for some reason i thought your visit to dallas was a day trip and after checking my email that night i figured you were already on you're way back to okc. meh.

mi cocina's was my mom's favorite restaurant for years.
my grandmother was a hairdresser at the adolphus when i was a kid. i loved going to work with her on weekends. she did chuck connor's hair there once and got me an autographed picture when i was about 9.
the petroleum club used to be in another building downtown when i was a kid and i got to go there with my dad once when i was a kid and once when we worked together 20 years later. faaancy place!
good memories.

and good job with that 20 dollar bill, terry.

SKYGIRL said...

Oh, Terry, once your electricity comes back on, and you check this, I did have Lunch with my Sister #2 @ "The Cattlemen's Restaurant!" I thought it sounded familiar, and she thought I would like it because it was in the Cowboy part of town, south of some junction, and she was right, I did!;-)

Annie said...

Looks like you finished one excellent adventure just to arrive home in time for another one with the ice storm. Hope you and yours are warm and safe!

*(¯`·¸*Chris*¸·´¯)* said...

Flinty, I hope you are safe there. We are going to get it tonight around 3am.

As I was reading about the party, I felt strangely underdressed in my flannel pants and sweatshirt. Sounds like it was a wonderful affair.

nancy said...

glad you had a nice time with your son. matt was a huge troy aikman fan growing up, that of course was before brett favre!

Cinnamin said...

What an adventure! :-)

I'm watching the news and see the big ICE STORM in OK. Just wanted to check in with you and make sure that you and family are safe!!

Joanne D. Kiggins said...

Sounds like you had a great visit. Glad you enjoyed it. You deserve a little fun time.