Before we make the final decision whether or not to uproot our entire life and relocate to Dallas, we wanted to go visit in person. As tourists, but also as possible residents. Coincidentally, it had been on my heart lately to take Ryan on a one-on-one trip, so I talked Mike into bringing him with us on our adventure. He. was. ecstatic.
We left on Saturday afternoon, knowing that we wanted to check out a particular church on Sunday morning. As we were boarding the plane out of Phoenix, Mike ran into an old co-worker from 10 years ago. As it turns out, he currently lives in Dallas and, after thinking about it, is quite literally the ONLY person Mike knows in the Dallas area, other than the VP of his company. Things we discovered while chatting with him:
- He lives in the exact area we are considering moving.
- After living in Phoenix his entire life, he and his family moved to Dallas 4 years ago and fell in love.
- He and his wife are in the process of relocating back to Phoenix because both of his parents have passed away and he felt led to move closer to his siblings and in laws.
The only person Mike knows in Dallas was on our flight. Coincidence? I think not. We chatted all the way until we had our luggage in hand, then he offered to meet us for lunch the next day to answer any questions we have about relocating.
We arrived at the hotel late, checked in, and crashed hard.
Sunday morning was very wet and rainy, but as Phoenicians, we love rain! The first thing I noticed in the daylight was: leaves. Orange, yellow and red…and the leaves were thicker than an inch! I truly miss seasons. And trees with leaves that are more than sprigs.
After church, we had lunch with Mike's friend, then spent the gloomy afternoon driving around looking at new homes models. Our rental car was a 2014…neither Mike nor I could figure out how to open the trunk, let alone start the darn thing without a key, at 11:00 at night in the rental car parking lot. Our vehicles are so old…my van still has a (*ahem*) cassette player in it! It was fun to drive a new car with new features.
Sunday night, we were invited to eat dinner with Mike's VP. As we were leaving our hotel to drive to his house, Mike realized his wallet was missing. And that we had gone to a dozen different places since lunch. I called the restaurant where we ate lunch and they didn't have it. He left a message at the church coffee shop where he purchased a coffee at 10am. Other than that, we were at a loss.
The night was tense because Mike couldn't get his mind off of how he would get home without an I.D., let alone all of the cash and credit cards that were in his wallet. After we left the VP's house, I followed the GPS back to the restaurant that I'd called earlier. When we pulled up, I realized it wasn't the same location. ?!?!? The guy at the front desk called the other location for me and, sure enough, the wallet was there. I have never seen my husband so relieved in my life!
He tried to pay the busboy who found it, but he refused the money. We quickly figured out why: He had already helped himself to a $50 bill as a finders fee. We didn't mind, as long as we could fly home without a hassle!
Monday morning, Mike took Ryan and toured his would-be office building and met his would-be boss. Afterward, we met with a couple of homeschool girls for lunch. (I met one over the phone and she couldn't wait to get together in person - good ol' Southern hospitality!) One of the girls brought two of her sons and the boys all instantly hit it off.
While we were there, I realized that the entire trip would be a waste if we don't choose to move to Dallas, so I suggested that we take the rest of the day to do fun things that would make memories for Ryan.
I'd heard of a "human snow globe" at a mall nearby, so we took Ryan there first. It was a giant dome-shaped waiting room to see Santa. With fake snow falling. Quite anticlimactic, but it was still fun. Santa wondered why we stopped in the dome and had no interest in sitting on his lap.
|X marks the spot where he was shot and the grassy knoll is on the other side of the street.|
|The building where Lee Harvey Oswold positioned himself for the assassination.|
Last, we drove to the infamous Galleria Mall to see the four-story Christmas tree. Ryan was so excited that he could ice skate around this monstrosity!The Smoke House (can you say, "Smoked Gouda Mac 'n' Cheese with Truffle Oil"?) we drove up to downtown Frisco to see their lights-set-to-music. It was cold, Christmasy fun.
We stopped by a popcorn shop (that could be smelled for blocks) for a treat while we watched the light show from a park bench. It was the perfect end to our little vacation.
|The popcorn shop had some crazy candy, including Bacon Candy Canes!|
I'm hoping Mike will make his decision ASAP about whether we're staying in Phoenix or moving to Dallas. I am fine either way, but leaning heavily toward moving. We have no good reason to move, yet I really feel like it is the right decision. Time will tell!