Day 28 – Returning to Dallas via the bowie knife in Bowie named after a guy called Bowie

• After the dizzying highs of the Eiffel Tower (with a cowboy hat), and the giant shovel, and the duck pond, I was prepared for a mundane day of return travel to Dallas in preparation for the dog show which was kind of the original point in coming to the US.

• On the drive back, we played our favourite game of count the water towers. Somewhere around tower number 65,534 we saw a Sonic in the distance and thought we’d give it another go because Tammy had vouched for it and I didn’t want old Mr “Yeah just smell them” to be our lasting impression. This time, I opted for a Dr Pepper Float and it arrived as ordered with no smelling required. I’m sure no one is surprised, but ice cream in Dr Pepper is a winning combination though I think the Dr Pepper does most of the heavy lifting. You could probably mix gravy with Dr Pepper and it would taste amazing. Seriously I’m going to miss Dr Pepper 🥲

• Jumping back on the highway, I spotted another Big Thing™ in the distance so obviously we had to stop. This time it was a Bowie knife. In a town called Bowie. Named after James Bowie, who is the bloke the knife is named after. It’s all connected! My favourite part of this display is the plaque saying “This town is named after James Bowie, who probably never visited here”. Just amazing. As always, Erin was impressed by my ability to find incredibly interesting things.

• Yet more giant caravans and busses on the highway, all going at least 20mph faster than we were, which was already 10mph higher than the speed limit. Seeing these behemoths swaying their way down the highway at like 85mph was a sight to behold. Meanwhile in Australia caravaners manage to flip on the Bruce every weekend towing a shoebox sized Jayco at 80kph 🙄

• Managed to find a Bass Pro Shop which came highly recommended from Sarah and Mark. It’s like BCF on steroids, but with guns. Literally whole speedboats and ATVs inside the store, as well as more weapons on hand than the ADF. Also bass in giant fish tanks, and a waterfall, and a shooting gallery (not the drug type, the Ekka sideshow alley type), and stuffed animals in varying qualities of taxidermy. Because we’re such keen hunters, we went on a shopping spree and bought…. a pair of jeans, and some more dog toys.

• Because I got to buy some jeans, that meant it was Erin’s turn for shopping. There was a chance at some dog showing, so it was off to Macy’s, Dillard’s, and Nordstrom’s (these are separate shops btw, not some pretentious triple-shot naming scheme of a law firm or whatever) for colourful suits. She bought some pretty show wear, and I got to sit in three different husband chairs. In what we’re learning to be standard US trading hours, we got kicked out at like 4pm so headed to Chipotle to tick another chain off the list. Didn’t taste bad at all, but she’s a fair expensive way to buy westernised Mexican food.

• Spotted a heap of Australian style housing estates, where big blocks have been subdivided to within an inch of their lives and then stuffed full of the same house, with monument grey rooftops as far as the eye can see.

• Took a quick happy snap of one of the many drive through banks they have around the place. I haven’t been inside a bank in probably a decade, so I’m not actually sure why people need to access a bank so frequently that they require access to a dozen ATMs at a time, but talk about peak America – don’t even have to get out of your car to do a quick bit of banking business! Can stop in for a drive through home loan after work, and then continue driving and pull straight in to the driveway of your new house without even getting out of the driver’s seat. And you could get Maccas on the way!

• Final stop was the hotel in the outskirts of Dallas, which started out a little ominous… ear plugs provided by the hotel 😬 Luckily we did not need them at all, with the highway providing more background white house then anything. One thing I’m really enjoying is the lack of farting Golfs and Audis backfiring their way through every intersection. The rumble of a V8 is so much less irritating than European fart boxes.

• Final clothes washing stop before home time. I now have sufficient polos and jeans to dress exactly the same for the rest of the trip.


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