Sam awoke this morning feeling well less than 100% - she was pretty tired and the sniffles that she had had over the past few days was starting to develop into something a bit more serious, so she decided that she could do with a more relaxing day.
As our agenda for the day was a visit to the Dallas Aboretum, it was probably not going to be an enthralling day for her and she would be flying the following day and it would be best in the long run to rest up - she did take it easy for the day.
Diane's directions for the drive meant that we found it without any problems - we arrived just a few minutes before Sara, Judy and Dede turned up - all looking truly lovely - it just runs in the family.
With the benefit of Dean/Jim's membership and also Judy's we were able to get in for free - nice!
|Outside the Arboretum|
The Arboretum had spent a great deal of time and money on their christmas theme - the 12 days of Christmas - someone had mentioned afigure of $2 million.
The weather was simply superb - sunny and no wind.
|A partridge in a pear tree...|
|Three french hens - in the background ....|
in the foreground it is NOT the four calling birds or even two lots of Turtle Doves.
|from left Sara, her aunt Judy, Diane and Didi|
We did the full circuit of the park and thoroughly enjoyed it all - having such a great day in the process.
|Nine ladies dancing ... and one extra in front|
|Eleven pipers piping|
|Twelve drummers drumming|
|Santa photo is done for this year|
We drove Sara and Dede back to Jim and Dean's house where they were staying the night, and Sara convinced Dean that he needed to join with her, Diane and I for dinner at a local restaurant famous for their lobsters and other dishes - Lefties.
So we were off and out again and I was pretty impressed with the whole meal from the lobster bisque starter to main course - Diane and Sara certainly enjoyed their lobsters - and the price was very reasonable indeed.
Monday started very early - at around 4:15am - Sam had an early flight out at 6:15am from Dallas Love Field and whilst it was close and little or no traffic expected, we still needed to be there an hour before hand and make sure that everything was packed.
One daughter dropped of on time and back to Diane, who by this time was awake and mentally preparing for our packing which would take place after we had had breakfast.
We actually managed to get it all in the cases - total weight was only 79kgs - less than what we had brought with us.
With that all done we ventured out for bag tags and a couple of little things, and also headed into uptown Dallas where we found the M-Line Trolley car and had a trip around on that - it a refurbished tramcar which used to be part of the tramway system in Dallas until 1956 and is now operated by volunteers as a regular service 7 days a week - and all completely free.
It was pleasing to find out that the electrical system was provided by the tramways system in
|M-Line Trolley car coming to the end of the line.|
The wooden planked area is a turntable.
Also had a wander around the arts precinct of
|Looking out over the Woodall-Rogers freeway heading west -|
traffic is light compared to the evening rush
|This is How to Build Xmas Tree 101 - Step 1 is the frame|
|Step 2 is the branches and decorations|
|Diane at play with her toy soldiers - again!|
|Not only do you get fit but you also get religion and a coffee|
We managed to make it back in time for a call from Sara suggesting a last get-together with her and Mike in the late afternoon.
The sun had well set when we were heading towards
We wandered around the ground floor trying to catch an elevator up the bar on the 27th floor only to be told that it was closed on Mondays - we all thought it was unusual for a hotel of the importance of Hilton.
Anyway we managed to somehow find a person who allowed us to take a look at the views of the
|The lights of Dallas|
Not wanting to overstay our good fortune we headed down and cheekily made our way into the Christmas Sparkle display and setup in the hotel - asking if we could just have a bit of a peek before deciding to part with any money for the privilege.
|The blocks in the background are from the Berlin Wall|
|It wasn't a case of how big was the fish that got away - Sara|
and Diane were amazed at how much we were talking - and they
are usually the title holders for doing that.
Further around from here we did finally find a bar for a drink and some snacks and some serious discussions relating to all sorts of topics, but mainly about boats. We may have to install another bedroom extension on the boat - Mike is pretty keen about a visit.
Diane has developed a taste for ice-cream but it has to be the soft-serve Dairy Queen variety and Mike catered to her desires by driving to the nearest open DQ he could find, which must have been about 10 miles away - thank you Mike.
I have to say that I enjoy it as well.
|They're famous for turning it upside down to show|
how thick it is - it won't flow out.
After Mike and Sara dropped us off at our unit we just about fell into bed after another long day - a last day in