the big d

I'm not a fan of Dallas. I have a theory that Houstonians do not like people from Dallas (who I hear call themselves Texans, just Texans, but I heard that from a dumb guy so who knows) and vice versa. I went there on a day trip yesterday for work. It does not get a list. I cannot think of 10 Things... The one good thing is that now I can go on my visits without supervision. Here's the rest of the story...

The day started with the alarm clock going off at 4:40. AM. I like to sleep in to maybe 8:30 or 9 if I have no where to be. If I have to get up early for work I can. However, getting up before 5 is inhumane I think. Add to that the inability to fall asleep/stay asleep the night before. If I fall asleep now, I'll get 4 hours of sleep. Now, 3 and a half hours...

So bright and early--no, make that dark and early--I'm up and driving to the airport. I time myself. It takes 25 minutes. I remember the moment during my interview for this job where the boss' boss (who does not live in Houston and my bet is that she has also never been to the small suburb in which I dwell) told me I was wrong about how long it took me to get to both airports from my home. Just for the record, I'm not wrong. I've driven the routes a few times in the last 14 months.

I fly Southwest. The unassigned seats and the subsequent lines that form pre-boarding irritate me about Southwest. Or they used to. I realized yesterday how to work the system. You get in line after a cute boy. You then have the "freedom" that Southwest offers to sit next to the cute boy. My flight was kind of slim pickins so I sat by So-So Boy. It was more about the realization than the actual boy this time.

Things were going well. I got in a little reading and a little nap. When I stepped back into the airport in Dallas, coffee was awaiting me. I have an hour to get to my site that the internet assures me is only 17 minutes away. I take time to do last minute prep work and enjoy the coffee. I saunter to get a cab (which I hate doing--getting the cab, not sauntering), leaving about 40 minutes for the cabby to get me to my destination.

Old Man Cabby (which you can spell either "cabby" or "cabbie"--I looked it up) could not hear me the first time I said the address. Ok. That should have been a sign. I continue to talk saying things like "I think it's off of LBJ" and "it's in such-and-such Professional Plaza." OMC says he needs the address. I repeat the address. He drives off. I assume he knows where he's going.

I forget to ask if he takes credit cards. I rifle through my purse and find $22. Ok, I could probably make it on that. We're driving around not getting on any freeway but seemingly have a destination in mind. When we get to where he thinks we should be we slow down. To about 3 mph. On the street. People honk. After maybe a half mile of the slow driving OMC pulls into a parking lot to figure out where we are and how to get where I need to be. I'm supposed to be there in 10 minutes at this point. He pulls out the map. He chuckles a few times. He says he thought the place was over here. Really? I thought we were just going the scenic route. In Dallas. Scenic... The meter now says $21.45 or something and I ask if he takes credit cards. He does. He also turns off the meter.

We get back on the road where I proceed to get attention from a biker.

We get on the freeway. Things are looking good. Even though I'm late, I'm not stressed. Until we exit the freeway. And are on the feeder road. And we just stop. On. The. Feeder. Stopped. Stopped right next to a driveway to a parking lot that he does not pull into. There, stopped on the feeder, he proceeds to again pull out the map. After the first car swerves to avoid hitting us and honks, OMC does not pull into the drive. He turns on his hazards. He does not just glance at the map. He's again trying to figure out where he went wrong. I try to remain calm. I try to tell myself I'm not going to die in a cab. I try to remain limp so that when we get rear-ended by someone going 60 off the freeway exit I will minimize resistance. I have a brief vision of being impaled by my laptop that is in the trunk behind me. Miraculously, we don't die. He figures out (again) where we're going and we are off.

We finally make it to the office. He apologizes profusely. He charges me $20. I do not tip. I think to myself that if I were to make a "10 Things--Dallas" list it would include "being alive" and not just because I couldn't think of anything better to put on it.


km said…

Now back to one of your previous entries. I am glad that you did not tell me this story on the phone last night; I would have had nothing to read that was new. Did you not tell me intentionally???
Bubba's Sis said…
Reading AND a nap in a 50-minute flight? Impressive!

This whole story cracks me up! I know it was not funny for you at the time, but you sure do tell it well! Thanks for the chuckle!
Cheryl said…
I'm sorry that happened to you but I think it really is a typical Dallas experience. Not the near death experience (not usually that exciting there) but the parts about inability to drive safely --or park -- and the lack of scenery. One time I went there I met a cute guy who was real nice to look at but, come to think of it, that was closer to Fort Worth. Sorry.

Can we now say that "Candice has done Dallas?"
nora said…
I am also sorry that you had to go through that. And you are right, Dallas -- scenery... yeah right!! that is like saying Houston has a great weather. Look at the bright side (if there are any) you arrived in one piece.
I have been there a couple of times and people drive crazier than they do in Austin. Another place is not on my list to visit.
BTW, I got my blog and posted. I am so excited, can't wait for comments and write other stuff.
Bubba said…
As someone who has lived in Dallas and Houston, they are pretty much the same city. I like Houston better, but I'm biased, I grew up in Houston. Dallas has a smaller feel and it gets cold in Dallas. There are some really neat areas of Dallas as well.

I did a day trip to Houston once and our cabbie had to stop for gas. I don't like taking cabs in cities where people drive. NY has the best cab system in the world. DC cabs suck, you negotiate before you get in, no meter.

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100 things--thankful

hey, would you like to see the nursery?