There are very few days that come together perfectly, especially when it comes to adventuring with children. We had one such day recently, in Dallas. Even the weather cooperated: instead of the blistering temperatures of the week earlier it was something milder (still hot, mind you, but better.) The skies were clear and the sun shining but not blinding, and we had clear views as the prairies stretched through the metroplex and beyond. I thought I could see further than the suburban sprawl to the vast grasslands of North Texas. That was an easy thing to imagine as the suburbs seem to go out in spokes and there are indeed swaths of prairie adjacent to the city center. (Most of the undeveloped land serves as levees for the city, but I can appreciate a functional piece of nature as a very beautiful thing.)
The highlight of the day was definitely viewing the city from above. We went up Reunion Tower to the Geo Deck to observe the city from the skyline itself. It was a magnificent experience, and a memory I will treasure forever. From the GeoDeck we could see for miles in every direction.
We could clearly identify many Dallas landmarks, including Dealey Plaza, the historic West End District, and our beloved Perot Museum.
For the landmarks I didn’t already recognize the touchscreens all around the deck provided additional information. The interior of the GeoDeck is very comfortable and offers great views along with the technology to enhance your experience.
None of that, however, replaces the feeling of being outside.
We were nervous to go outside with the kids. At first we took turns going out so someone could stay inside with our toddler. Quickly, however, we came to realize how safe it was out there. And despite the heat there was a terrific breeze making the atmosphere incredibly pleasant. I don’t say this often in August but it was even refreshing.
When it was snack time we went up to the Cloud Nine snack bar. This is a revolving restaurant, like Wolfgang Puck’s restaurant a level above, and boasts the sweeping vistas and changing views while you sit and enjoy some food.
The boys and I also took some time to try out the VR experience. I thought it might be superfluous since we can actually go outside, but it was very cool. There’s a feeling of weightlessness from the VR that you don’t get behind the safety of the GeoDeck.
I wanted to stay all day. My toddler would never have tolerated staying in one place all day, and I was so grateful he was engaged for as long as he was. Being up in the GeoDeck was sublime. I will return. Someday. It was amazing.
By the time I pried myself away from the GeoDeck, it was mid afternoon. We picked up some Dallas souvenirs at the gift shop and headed out in search of what I had heard described as the end-all-be-all of Dallas bbq. I had also heard that the lines are always long. We thought we would beat the system by going between mealtimes to avoid the crowds. We were wrong. When people tell you there is always a line, they mean there is ALWAYS a line.
However, Pecan Lodge is located in Deep Ellum so at least we had cool buildings surrounding us, and the people watching was good. Once we got into the restaurant itself my husband saw that the Express Line had no line at all. The only rule for the express line is that you have to buy 5lbs of meat. It doesn’t even need to be all of the same stuff! We figured if it really is the best bbq in town that we might as well get an obscene amount. (We could live off the leftovers for the next couple of days. And we did. That brisket is good hot or cold. No regrets.) Plus we could avoid listening to the kids tell us that they were hot, tired, bored, and hungry. As it turns out the food was worth the wait; the express line was worth the overindulgence. We were done eating roughly the same time the people who had been in line with us ordered their food.
I loved seeing the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge from above as it’s a Dallas icon that has captivated my imagination for years. So after stuffing ourselves to contentment, we drove to the bridge.
I was more excited than a normal person should be, and then a little disappointed that just as I was taking pictures of the bridge my phone rang. No matter. I saw the bridge up close and personal.
It was a bucket list day. The GeoDeck especially really had a tremendous impact on me. Since that visit I return to it in my mind often, it’s my new happy place.
Dallas, we love you. And we will return. I promise.