For this one, I have my boss to thank. It was a slow Friday afternoon at work, and I was in his office going over my business trip plans that I had for Monday and Tuesday of the next week. Two colleagues and I were headed to Dallas to meet with a large corporation and visit some sites for possible self-service bank branches. Anyway, he asked if I’d ever been to Texas before, and I told him, “Nope. Never.” He then went on and on about how (if he was still single and had time), he’d go a day or two early to hang out and explore a new place. Talk about inspiration! I decided to leave early Sunday morning, and make a day exploring the Dallas / Fort Worth area.
Here was my full itinerary for this trip:
02/23/97 American Airlines F100 Dayton to Dallas
02/25/97 American Airlines F100 Dallas to Dayton
It was an early flight out of DAY on a Sunday morning, but I was still excited to get up and go explore a new place. The flight down was uneventful, as I used some of the time to practice my Spanish (using flashcards). No time to waste I guess, as I was already starting to fall behind in my Spanish class I was taking. We landed right on time (early in the morning), and I’m glued to the window the whole time…and it was a long time, as DFW’s runways are quite a distance from the terminals. Anyway, I quickly make it to the rental car counter to claim my ride, which turned out to be a Hyundai Accent. Yuck. Quickly back inside to exchange and upgrade, I drove away in a black Ford Escort.
My first destination was downtown Dallas. It was quite empty being a Sunday morning, therefore quite easy to get around. I was actually enjoying the morning, as the sun was shining hard and the temperatures were starting to climb! Spring time! Quickly bored, I decide to drive over to Ft Worth to check out the scene there. It was a longer drive than I thought it would be, and by the time I got inside the city limits, I didn’t have any real desire to drive around in the heart of the city.
It was really turning out to be a nice day, so after a quick bite to eat at a local Subway, I set off in search of a lake…or any body of water would do. I eventually found a lake within a local state park, so I parked the car and got out to enjoy the spring warmth. It was so nice that I actually sat at the water’s edge for a couple hours before getting back in the car to find more water. It was a difficult search…there was another really big lake on the southeast side of Dallas, so I headed off in that direction. Not much scenery along the way, as northeastern Texas is pretty flat. Nice and clean, but flat and open. Anyway, after much searching, I never did find that lake I saw so clearly on my map. Oh well.
By now, it was approaching late afternoon, and I didn’t have to be back at DFW until about 8pm or so (to meet my colleagues). So, I decided to check out one more lake on the northern side of the city. I stopped at another ‘lake’ along the way (the one you always see from the air as you fly into DFW – it’s the one with the looooong dock and landing lights. For a military base, I think?). It took a while to reach (traffic was nasty), but once I found it I was glad I made the effort. It was really out in the boonies, and I had to take some tight back roads to get to it. It cost a couple bucks to get in, and I drove to an empty spot on the shore to get out and watch the sun go down over the Texas landscape. It truly was a beautiful spring evening. Clear skies, pretty scenery, cool crisp air…soooo relaxing. Another little perk was the fact that DFW was just to the south, and I had a great time just watching the airliners overhead turn final into the airport. A relaxing end to a relaxing day.
I was back at the airport by 8, and the business portion of the trip was officially underway.