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November 22nd 2008
Published: November 22nd 2008
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Last Friday I traveled with a coworker to Wichita Falls, Tx. to attend a Magnet School Conference. We departed Bush at noon on an Embraer 145 operated by Continental Express. The specs state that the seats are 17.5 inches wide. I think my left thigh is wider than that. It is a good thing that it was a short flight. The stewardess offered us water and pretzels. We landed at Love field on time and were whisked away to the Enterprise Lot by an otherwise empty shuttle bus.

My coworker (who will remain nameless to protect his identity) was named the driver as I was a last minute traveler. At Enterprise we were warmly welcomed. The nameless driver was offered a red Chevy HHR. He accepted graciously. The minute we drove away he was mumbling about not wanting to ride around in a red HHR. I Goggled HHR and found it to stand for Heritage High Roof. Heritage High Roof, what were they thinking? Now I know that they shouldn’t be bailed out.

By 3PM we were in Decatur (County seat of Wise) and I had not yet had lunch. We stopped at a Braum’s. This was my 2nd stop at a Braum’s. My first stop was this past summer on the way to Colorado. We stopped for breakfast at the same location. If you have never been to a Braum’s it is a combination Hamburger Stand and Dairy Store. The burger was good. Food always tastes better when you are on per diem.

We arrived at our hotel, the Howard Johnson in Wichita Falls at about 5pm. The city is about 15 miles south of the border with Oklahoma, 115 miles northwest of Fort Worth, and 140 miles southwest of Oklahoma City. Those coordinates put it in the middle of nowhere. The hotel lobby looked nice but looks can be deceiving. It was rated two stars. I would have to say that it was highly overrated. There is nothing like a cold shower to wake you up in the morning. Check out the reviews at: www.tripadvisor.com.

I went to Sheppard Air Force Base Sat. Drove around a bit. Next I visited the falls. They were turned off. Seems as if the flood of ’86 washed them away (that would be 1886, not 1986). The falls you see are artificial and run on city water. Maybe someone forgot to turn them on the day I was there. They reminded me of the Lion Exhibit at the Zoo. There is marker at the base of the falls honoring one Tom C. Foley, “Mr. Concrete of Wichita Falls”. I bet his decedents are glad that he wasn’t in the septic tank business. Sat. night we drove up to the Kiowa Casino in Oklahoma. Nice place but no liquor license.

On Sat, Sun, & Mon. we spent 2 hours each day at local schools. On Sunday the local news reporter, Lindsey Rogers, interviewed one of the ladies from my district. I got a photo of her doing the interview. She is a better interviewer than interviewee. It took several takes to get the photo right. She kept looking at me.

We departed Wichita Falls Mon. ASAP. Drove to the airport, cleared security, and walked to the gate desk at 2:15. Our flight was scheduled to depart at 5:00 PM. We both gladly paid $50 to get on the 2:30 flight. There were about a dozen people on board. We both had two seats to sit in. Got a photo of Lake Conroe on the way back, for what it’s worth.

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25th November 2008

Some trip
I didn't know that Howard Johnson's was still in business. After looking at the pool and wall, and hearing your story of the lack of hot water and the non-functioning restaurant, I can't figure out how they exist.

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