I knew that the DART station for the convention center was near Hall C of the Convention Center. Hall C is somewhere near the middle of the whole center which means that it's a hike from any point that buses drop you off. With my new backpack loaded up with some stuff, I was ready to go visit my friend Nick and to go on a quest for some treasures:
List in Order of Importance:
1)Get a Slurpee
2)Find a Tuxedo Shirt
3)Get a 12pk of water
4)Have one of Nickypoopoohead's Famous Margaritas
I discovered that the DART station was down under the convention center in a spooky area where drugs, rapes, kidnappings and other doomsday prophecies could happen. I sure didn't want someone to kidnap me, stick me with some crack and then stick me in my crack. So, I was on point and ready to take out anyone that looked liked they had cruel intentions. Actual it was very clean at this area and there were about 4 police officers hanging out near the station area, so that if someone were to scream, they would have a short response time.
I approached what could only be the ticketing machine. I saw lots of letters with the big numbers 1,2,3,4 and so, not to look like the DART virgin that I was, I actually walked past it, eyeing it up and down, weighing where I should go to reference the time table. I tried to look casual without looking like I was looking casual. It probably didn't work, but I got the info that needed… and I was ready
#1: Single Pass or Day Pass: Single Pass
#2: What Stop where you going: White Rock Lake
#3: Gimme Money:$1.25
#4: Take your ticket
OKay, so the next thing was to wait for the right train. Sure enough, the first train was NOT one that I wanted. The next one was. I got on and there was only one other person on board. I chose a seat up front, next to the window. I had a reflection that I could see the rest of the train, incase that kidnapper was on board.
I listened to Episode 54 of Phedippidations during the trip. Our first stop was Union Station and I could have taken a train right from the hotel. Oh well, not a problem… I knew there was one at the convention center. Then we hit the heart of downtown Dallas. As we made our way from stop to stop, we picked up more people. By about the 5th stop we were pretty full. At one of our last city stop before we opened up our legs to make the trip out of the city… a woman and a dude got on board. The way the two of them were dressed, it was hard to discern if they knew each other.
I could see wish this guy would stop talking in her eyes, but he was acting just fine. He had a pocket knife in his pants pocket. Being from the Northern part of the South, I am very familiar that most Southerners carry pocket knifes in their pockets… I need to go get mine. So he was armed, looked dangerous, but there was nothing in his body language that would suggest anything but I was watching him.
There was only one time where I thought that I missed my stop. The only indication at the stop is the signs outside. There is no “Next Stop:” sign inside. But I made it just fine. I was a little early too…
I called Nick and got his voicemail. I called again and it went straight to voicemail. It was 105 degree and I did not want to sit outside. I decided that maybe I should start walking to make it easier for Nick to pick me up. But which way…
Hmmmm… I had a google map but there were no street names… and I am guy… we don't use maps. Actually, I am in touch with my inner map. So, it was okay, but I wanted to NOT look like I was looking at a map. So I had to figure out how to get where I needed to go.
I decided that I would travel South as opposed to West to get to Nick's house. Luckily it wasn't too far away. I started walking on the sidewalk and soo, I ran out of sidewalk. Poop. Good thing for me is that there were some shade. Not much but some. I'll have to try to map my route for you all. The computer is running to slow to map it right now…
I walked around trusting my intuition as I made turns etc. I kept looking at my map and trying to decide which street I was on (or passing). After another educated guess, I found myself on the road to his house. Sure enough I was about 6 blocks when I get a called from Nick
“Where are you?”
“I am just about at the corner of Santa Barbara and something”
“You are real close to the house… gave directions… and wait on the bench on the front porch”
It was about 20 minutes before Nick showed up, I was just thankful to sit in the shade. I even went to his garden hose and got some water. When Nick showed up he was gracious enough to put my shirt in the wash and gave me a shirt to change into. It was great seeing him again. His kids are a few months younger than mine. For some reason, I did not take a single picture. must have been the heat.
After some dialogue, we headed in his truck for the closest Men's Wearhouse to get a tuxedo shirt. He got a call from his wife to pick up some ice cream. Mmmmm Ice cream. As we were driving around it was like we were 18 again, traveling around… except this time we had kids, wives (just one each) and mortgages…
If you ever want to experience superior customer service… go to Men's Wearhouse. They were outstanding… I will buy my next suit from them. If I have to I will go back to that store next year. They were great and I was very pleased with my shirt. I ended purchasing the high dollar shirt… one, it is unlike the ones I had at home (that I forgot, why do I need another?)… two, it looks sharp… three, it was very comfortable and four, it's wrinkle free and I don't have to take it to the drycleaners…
Our next stop was Target to get water for me and ice cream for him. We picked up some Blue Bell ice cream which I think is equivalent to Tennessee's Mayfield ice cream. We went back to the house. I got to play with his kids and they were adorable. I had my margarita and some food. We talked about parenting styles and thing that happened with and to our kids. It was really nice but it had to come to an end.
If you have been keeping track, you realize that I have had yet to get a Slurpee… and sure enough that DID happen. I got my Slurpee and all was good. When I got back to the hotel, I was beat! I had been up all day… walked a little ways in the heat and I had a big day tomorrow. ZZZZZZZZZZzzzmary kay, seminar