Friday, November 20, 2009


Who says you can’t live in Paradise?


Tuesday, November 17 – Back to Dallas Freightliner for the motor home (MH) front end re-build. I'm not looking forward to the drive through Dallas this morning. Well, the drive wasn't too bad. I only got in a hissyfit one time when we tried to merge and no one would let us in. Finally, a trucker simply stopped his rig in the lane, and I drove on the highway. We arrived at the service facility by 9:30 a.m., checked in, jumped in the car and headed to downtown Dallas for some sightseeing.

Our first stop was the new Dallas Cowboys Stadium. The stadium is located in Arlington. This 1.4 billion dollar stadium was amazing. We took the 2 hour tour and were very pleased with the experience. It is almost uncomfortable to see the lavish spending that went into the building of this facility. No corners were cut in the construction of the largest stadium in the world. Prices at the concession stand will help pay for the construction. $5.50 for a hotdog, $8 for a beer, or you can get a bottled water for a mere $5. Unfortunately, we were not permitted on the field because they were using it for a CPR event. They were breaking the world record for the most people to learn CPR at one time......silly huh! Sadly, we also had to by-pass the cheerleader locker room. Darn! (Paul said that not Marsha.)


More pictures of stadium.

The Texas Rangers stadium is right next door. Although, we did not tour this stadium, it was a very nice looking facility.


We then headed to the Old Red Courthouse. The first courthouse in Dallas. Weird to see this old building right in the middle of skyscrapers.


The highlight of the day was Dealey Plaza. This is the location of President Kennedy assassination on September 22, 1963. Below is a picture of the “grassy knoll” where puffs of smoke were seen. On the fence they have painted the top of two fence posts to indicate where the two shots came from. We met and talked for quite awhile with a man who was there that day. He even had a picture of Kennedy being shot and there he was in the background. He is a firm believer in the conspiracy theory. He swears he heard shots and saw smoke from the grassy knoll area. He was one of 116 eye-witnesses that were interviewed. The street is marked with “X” where Kennedy was hit by the first shot and then 20 yards down the street the second and fatal shot. (Click on More pictures below to see the X on the street.) When you look up at the window where Oswald was supposedly shooting from, it's hare to believe he could have been the only shooter. When you walk over to the grassy knoll area, the multi-shooter theory seems to fit. The bottom two pictures show the window of the Texas School Book Depository, which is now known as the Sixth Floor Museum where Oswald supposedly shoot President Kennedy and the lamppost shows where a piece of his skull was found. Theory is….it is impossible at the angle Oswald had that a piece of skull could land by the lamppost. Spooky to say the least.


More pictures of Dealy Plaza.

We then went over to the cattle drive park. This was a very neat park, Pioneer Plaza Cattle Drive. Pioneer Plaza covers 4.2 acres in Downtown Dallas. There are some 40 bronzed longhorn steers setting a trail down a small hillside as if on a cattle drive. They go through a stream. The Trees and Parks Foundation dedicated this plaza in 1995, to represent the early cattle drives that were part of Texas history. The artist was native Texan Robert Summers. Really cool!


Paul tried to wrestle one of the cattle. Look at the before and after pictures below.


More cattle drive pictures.

That concluded our sightseeing for the day. We had to get back to the Freightliner facility at 4:00 p.m. to pick-up our motor home. When we pulled in, I suddenly had an “uh oh” experience. The motor home was parked right where we left it this morning. It appeared to never been moved. I checked with our service rep, and sure enough they hadn't started yet. GEESH! I was very upset, and let them know it. I didn't vent my anger, but let them know I felt we were being treated very poorly. The manager of the facility came down to speak with us bearing gift. Two very nice Freightliner jackets. I graciously accepted their gift but still expressed my feelings that we were being treated unfairly. They immediately began servicing out MH. Better late then never I guess. Finally, at 9:00 p.m. They had completed the job......I think. We are now in one of their RV hook-up sights waiting until morning to check out. Hmmmmm what should I expect?


Wednesday, November 18 – Camp Freightliner was quiet through the night. We were quite comfortable here. We were ready to roll by 9:00 a.m. Back to the COE (Corp of Engineering) campground north of Dallas. This time we went around the city rather than driving through the heart of town. Finally figuring out this big city driving. At camp I had my first screw-up with the poop dumping. We were hooking up the utilities...electric – ok; water – ok; sewer – uh oh! Something isn't right! When we pulled the valve to dump the tank we had a poop fountain. Sewage squirting all over the ground. The line must be plugged. I went over to the camp host's trailer to tell them. “We don't have sewer hook-up” was her reply. Uhhhh, what's the plastic pipe for that sticks out of the ground? “that's the drain valve for winterizing the campground.” Looks like I had some cleaning up to do....GEESH! Hooked up the water hose and cleaned everything up. First pooper screw-up!

We were happy to relax around the camp site today. Took Bella for a couple of walks. Took a bike ride. Read a little. Visited with other campers. Watched a beautiful sunset. A nice relaxing day.


More campground pictures.

Thursday, November 19 – I got up to watch the sun rise this morning! Marsha and Bella slept....ahhh. Seeing how we went down to the water last night to see the sun set, I thought I should begin the day with a sun rise. Pretty but not gorgeous.....we need some mountains in the background.

We're headed to Fort Worth today. Our first stop is the U.S. Bureau of Engraving & Printing. This is one of two places in the USA where money is printed. Their motto is “The Buck Starts Here!” How clever is our government. The other place is Washington, DC. This was a very interesting tour and FREE! I was surprised when the GPS guided us to a very new building in the suburbs of Ft. Worth. The place was surrounded by triple chain link fencing. Security was tighter than what you see at the typical airport. NO cell phone, NO cameras, NO purses, NO anything but clothes on your back! After passing through metal detectors, which I always set off with my replaced hip, we were led on an hour tour. We walked in an elevated hallway above the production floor. Billions of dollars of money was in view as it was being printed. Amazing! Marsha was ahhhhh struck at the process of making our money. There were also a zillion school groups there for field trips. we miss those teaching days....LOL


We then headed to the Ft. Worth Stockyards. This is the historical area of Ft. Worth where many millions of cattle, pigs, and sheep arrived to be slaughtered. Much of the yards' stock pens still exist and many of the buildings have been converted into little shops and restaurants. The highlight is the cowboys on horse back driving the longhorn cattle through the street to recreate sending them off to market. We then walked through many of the shops. They have a walk of fame for all those that contributed to the Ft. Worth area. Some famous people you may have heard of are Annie Okey and John Wayne. Billy Bob’s is the largest honky-tonk in the USA and is also located near the stockyards. We paid our $1 admissions to walk through the nearly deserted nightclub. Kelly & Scott were here a couple weeks ago on a Friday evening and said it was so crowed they could hardly move. There are two stages for live bands, five or six dance floors and hundreds of feet of bars. There must be seating for a least a thousand people at tables throughout the honky tonk. They also have pool tables, video games, bull riding and a live rodeo on Friday and Saturday nights. All-in-all, it was another day in Paradise.


Lots more great pictures of the cattle drive.

Thanks again for visiting with us. Y'all come now ya hear.