Dallas, Texas - December 2008
From Puerto Rico I flew to Costa Rica. There are no photos of that part of
my trip as the weather was dreadful the entire time. Almost unending rain
and grey skies with low cloud made taking any meaningful photos impossible.
The best part of the trip was probably the visit to the Arenal hot springs,
where you can relax in mineral rich hot spring water.
The flight from San Jose to Dallas was delayed three times. The flight was late arriving because of the bad weather, creating a 7 hour delay. After boarding the aircraft they discovered an engine problem that required repair, delaying us another 2 hours. Finally the weather had deteriorated once again leaving us waiting another three hours before the plane could leave. I usually enjoy flying but this flight started to make me nervous!
Arriving in Dallas after midnight I collected my rental car and headed for the hotel. My first stop the next day was a trip to the doctor, as a stomach bug I'd picked up on my travels was making me ill. Antibiotics cleared that in a short time.
My first tourist stop in Dallas was Dealey Plaza and the Sixth Floor Museum at the former Texas School Book Depository. Dealey Plaza was made infamous after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963.
John F. Kennedy was the thirty-fifth President of the United States. Just before 12:30 p.m. CST, Kennedy’s limousine entered Dealey Plaza and approached the Texas School Book Depository. When the Presidential limousine turned and passed the Depository shots were fired at Kennedy.
Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested an hour and 20 minutes after the assassination for killing a Dallas police officer who had spotted Oswald walking along a sidewalk in the residential neighbourhood of Oak Cliff. He was captured in a nearby movie theatre. Oswald resisted, attempting to shoot the arresting officer with a pistol, and was forcibly restrained by the police. Oswald's case never came to trial because two days later, while being escorted to a car for transfer from Dallas Police Headquarters to the Dallas County Jail, he was shot and killed by Dallas nightclub owner Jack Ruby.
The Old Red Courthouse is an imposing Romanesque style building with turrets and gargoyles. The architecture of the courthouse dominates the area near Dealey Plaza. The courthouse is now open to the public as a museum showcasing the history of Dallas.
One building I wanted to see was Dallas City Hall. The Dallas City Hall Building officially opened in 1978. The structure was designed by renowned architect I.M. Pei and resembles an inverted pyramid. The exterior stands 10 stories high.
The idea of a new city hall for Dallas emerged in the mid 1960s, as part of a program of "Goals for Dallas" designed to restore the city's reputation after the assassination of President Kennedy. It's unique exterior was used in the movie 'Robocop' and the TV show 'Lois and Clark'.
Near Dallas City hall, Pioneer Plaza honours Dallas’ cowboy past by celebrating the trails that brought settlers to Dallas. It features native landscaping with a flowing stream and waterfall with a re-creation of a cattle drive in the form of bronze statues of longhorns being driven by three horse riding cowboys. The sculptures were created by Robert Summers of Glen Rose, Texas.