Saturday, 20 June 2009

Don't mess with Texas...

So what have I been up to these past few days in Dallas, Texas? Well, I've spent a lot of time recovering from jetlag and just relaxing here at Lisa's place (at right). I am amazed by these houses that have no front wall or security gates! Certainly a change from South Africa.

Wednesday I spent primarily here, trying to get my mind connected to my body again. We did go to a big Walmart-type shop called Target where I was able to buy a calling card and then we also went for a walk in the neighbourhood and did a lovely trail of the nearby river. There were lots of ducks and geese and turtles.

Thursday was probably my highlight of my time here in Dallas. It was an extremely busy day. Lisa became my tour guide for the day and she gave me a sight-seeing tour of the city. We first went to a big shopping centre, Northgate Mall, so I could find an adaptor for my two-prong SA plug type. (The one I brought from home was the wrong voltage - one of the things I had forgotten to check.) We also went to the Texas Treasures store where I got some Texas memorabilia. From the mall we drove to Einstein Brothers Bagels, where I had my first American bagel. It was really good. We then made our way to the West End Historic District, in the heart of Dallas.

Here Lisa showed me the 6th Floor Museum (the old book depository), which is one of the locations from where President John F. Kennedy could have been shot. We also saw the JFK memorial and the exact spot where JFK was shot (marked with an X on the road - picture at left). We then took a look in the Old Red Museum of Dallas County History and Culture, where we browsed through an exhibit on the lives of Robert E. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant, American Civil War generals. Lisa was going to take me up Reunion Tower, a high observation point overlooking Dallas, but unfortunately it was closed for the day. We then meandered back to the car.

Lisa then drove me through downtown and we passed the Dallas Farmer's Market (where they sell fresh produce), as well as Lisa's old house and Southern Methodist University. We then came home via Marble Slab creamery, an ice-cream store.

After an hour or so at home Lisa took me to my first baseball game. I had wanted to go to experience another aspect of American culture. So we drove to the Texas Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, a 45-minute drive away. The Texas Rangers were playing the Houston Astros in a very entertaining match. And although the team we were rooting for (Texas Rangers) lost 5 - 3, it was still great fun and lovely to soak up the atmosphere of an American sporting event. It was also pretty exciting as the previous President of the United States, George W. Bush, was at the game and waved to the spectators from his suite. The game ended late and we were only home at around 23h00.

Then today, Friday, we went to a Mexican restaurant, Desperados, for lunch and that was fun. My first experience of real Mexican food! Tomorrow I head to the IOC and am looking forward to this next chapter in my life! But before I close my time here with Lisa and her parents (Rick and Debbie) I must thank them for opening up their home to me. It has been a great time of rest and relaxation and Lisa has been a great friend and tour guide!

1 comment:

Nadine said...

Marble slab --- so good!!
Say hi to Lisa for me if you're still there!