Thursday, April 28, 2016

Dallas and Area

Big D - little A - double L - A - S.

After the DFW Fiber Fest I stayed on in the Dallas area to do some sightseeing.  There were two places in particular that I wanted to visit.  One was the site of the President Kennedy assassination and the other was Southfork Ranch from the TV series, Dallas.

The JFK assassination was one of those events that you remember where you were when it happened.  (The bombing of the twin towers in NYC was another, as was the death of Elvis.)

I was 14 at the time and had watched the events on black and white TV.  It had been a day of exams (9th grade) and I learned about it when I was leaving school.  This was the first big news event that I remember and I was very affected by it.  It was the only thing on TV and it was hard for me to believe that something like this could happen.  That same feeling overcame me when Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr. were killed.  The question was "WHY"?

Being in Dallas all these years later I had to see the location for myself, making it all the more real.  The atmosphere was not at all solemn, as I thought it might be.  There were lots of tourists and many teenagers obviously on a class trip. It seemed almost festive, which bothered me, but to be fair to was much before their time and they had a day off school.  There were street vendors selling souvenir newspapers and little groups of people stopping to listen to someone describing their take on the events (conspiracy?  no conspiracy?).

Dealey Plaza, the "grassy knoll" was were people had gathered back in 1963 to watch the motorcade drive by.

Click on picture to enlarge.
In this picture of the grassy knoll, facing in the opposite direction, you can see the Texas School Book Depository, on the right, where Lee Harvey Oswald fired the shots.

The shots were fired from the sixth floor.  There is a white object in the window to show where the shooter was located.  It was an eerie, sick feeling to know that a man stood there and fired at and killed the President.

This sign is just around the corner from the building.  By the way, you can see that it was a beautiful day.  The sun was shining and it was 81 F.

The next day, and on a happier note, I drove out to Parker, Texas to visit Southfork Ranch, home of the fictional TV family, The Ewings.  Dallas was one show in which I've seen every episode.  My Mom was a big fan, too, and we would often discuss the shenanigans of JR!  

The exterior of the house looks exactly as what you saw in the show and you'd almost expect to see Bobby Ewing driving down the long driveway in his red convertible.  

J.R. Ewing (Larry Hagman, left), and Bobby Ewing (Patrick Duffy, right)

Next to the house, what you never saw on the TV show, is the large gift shop and an event center.  This picture of the family was hanging on the wall of the gift shop.

Top Row (L to R):  Sue Ellen, Miss Ellie, Jock, Cliff Barnes, Pam
Bottom Row:  JR, Ray Krebs, Bobby

The next day I flew home.  With the sightseeing and the Fiber Fest, it was a very good visit to the Dallas area.

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