TheRealSharon's Blog











{April 13, 2011}   My Weekend in Review

This is just a recap of my weekend trip with my mom to Houston, Texas. I live about 2 hours from the outskirts of Houston so it wasn’t the FIRST time I have driven in Houston traffic and I’m not a fan of their traffic. Houston’s a big, busy city with people always on the go and in a hurry. At the time we got there, it was actually pretty empty for their traffic but still busy for someone who lives in a smaller city most of the time.

I got through the traffic in one piece barely. I consider myself a very good, cautious driver. That’s probably the only reason I made it to our hotel safely. At one point in driving, I was in the process of attempting to switch lanes once again (Dumb 7 lane highways!) when I almost got side swiped. I was easing into the lane from the right side and a SUV swung over in the lane from the left right as I was easing over. I looked over and saw the SUV just in time and swerved back into my lane. WHEW! Talk about an adrenaline rush!

I guess it’s a good thing I DID ease over….If I swung over when the other driver swung over, it wouldn’t have been pretty! And Thank God for having quick reflexes still. OK, so I made it alive and then we had a teensy problem finding where to go…..I had put in the address for the hotel but you had to park in the mall parking garage the hotel was inside….NOT a separate hotel parking garage. Ugh! But thanks to this nice man we saw walking around, we found the hotel and got ourselves parked.

No more crisis, right? Wrong…..You see, my mom hadn’t had her knee surgery yet so I had to push her in a wheelchair. Well…we had to find an elevator, which we found one and it took us inside Macy’s….we then asked a worker in Macy’s the location of our hotel and she sent us to Sak’s 5th Avenue.

First of all, I had never been in a Sak’s 5th Avenue. I am a plus size woman so I avoid stores where I KNOW the clothes would never fit me. I was very surprised to see that even IF I had a model body, I would still not be able to shop there! There were sections for Prada, Gucci, Donna Karen, Valentina, etc. OMG! I could just feel the glares from the people in there…Wondering what the heck I was doing in THAT store. After asking another lady in Sak’s, she led us to an elevator that took us to the parking garage……yea….BUT outside the elevators we met a nice woman who was very nicely dressed who walked with us back through Sak’s and pointed us to where our hotel entrance was. Right close to Nordstrom’s.

So we checked in to our convention and arrived in the hotel lobby. After contemplating the thought of bringing all our baggage through the mall again, I vetoed that idea, left my mom in the lobby and used the wheelchair as a baggage dolly and ran off to fetch our stuff. It was actually quicker this way….I walked out the side exit into daylight and up about 2 floors to our car and then brought all our bags back down and into the lobby. We checked in, I unloaded our bags in the room, then returned to fetch my mom and unload her into the room. Well, she unloaded herself actually but hopefully you get my drift.

We could have hired a porter, I suppose, but hey, I needed my exercise anyways. Plus, I doubt they would have liked our measly tip we could have afforded anyways. After settling into the room, I started perusing the hotel reading material and found that we could have breakfast delivered to our room. How nice! Then I saw the prices….$5.25 for HALF a grapefruit, $3.75 for ONE piece of toast, $6.25 for cereal(Cheerios, Raisin Bran, and others), etc. Not to mention 19% gratuity and sales tax included. You may call us cheap but that’s ridiculous…..and it’s not like WE picked the hotel. Our insurance group did. My mom had brought some breakfast bars and me and her ate one of those both Sat. and Sunday mornings. There was no free continental breakfast at all and everything seemed to have a steep fee attached. Guess that’s what you get for staying at a hotel in the most expensive part of Houston.

Going off course for a minute here, but did you know Houston was named after MY relative? That’s right! Sam Houston was my 4th great uncle. Shouldn’t I get like some special rights to the city? LOL….I wish!

We had meetings until late Friday but thankfully, there were snacks provided at the social they had. Nachos, egg rolls, jalapeno peppers, taquitos, pot stickers, beef wellington,etc. It was yummy! Me and my mom both got full on the snacks and they had plenty. Not sure what they did with all those leftovers. Should have told them to send them to room 1351 of the Westin Galleria.

The next time, we got a little tour of a teensy bit of the mall. During a small break, we decided to find the food court and watch the ice skaters at the rink.  I found out just how NOT handicapped accessible that mall was! We went down several elevators and then right back up when we realized that we had to take one down a couple floors and then walk a mile to yet another one that would take us to the rink floor. There were several escalators and stairs we passed but I had to walk past them and on for a good piece to get to the elevators. They really needed more elevators! Once we found the food court area, we watched some little kids taking ice skating lessons and oohed and aahed for about 30 minutes before setting out to find our way back to the hotel. Once we got back, we had about 30 minutes to get ready before heading to our lunch banquet. Oh my goodness, the lunch banquet was so good! I hate salad, in general, even though it’s good for you, but this one was so yummy! They had spinach, pecans, roasted tomatoes, and feta cheese with this really good dressing. Not sure what it was called….the waitress mentioned Le Fleur de something that was like 10 words long….and after seeing my confused face, she simply stated, “It’s really good with Spinach.” So I replied, “I’ll take your word for it!” and dug in….and it was heavenly. I finished the whole plate which is impressive for someone who usually despises salad! The entree was this to die for chicken with spinach and cheese inside along side wild rice and asparagus. I would have ate it all but I was getting full. Then for dessert was cheesecake(which I just ate a small piece of),some berries, a scoop of ice cream and a dollop of whip cream with one of those chocolate sticks emerging from it. It was the best meal I have ate in forever and we basically made that both our lunch AND dinner, we were SO stuffed.

And I had more to talk about from my weekend, but since this blog has already been so long, I feel guilty to take any more of your time so I guess I will continue this later!

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allison says:

oh girl, i know JUST how you felt at Saks! I used to feel that way at Foleys, Penneys, just about any department store in Houston. There was only one store down there when i was in high school that sold plus size clothes (they were just fat girls clothes back then) and that was Lane Bryant and they catered to a much older crowd. I always wore old lady clothes–lol. I avoided the Galleria like the plague when I was younger because of the looks I always got when I was there. You had to look and dress a certain way to be accepted there; I was never comfortable in that environment. I think the only time I actually went there and had fun was when I saw Star Wars at the theater there in 1977. I remember going into a little gift shop with my friend, Jamie, and only being able to afford a bookmark! I still have it somewhere—lol! i told you that was the most exclusive part of town.

It was interesting readnig your perspective of Houstont traffic after having grown up there. I lived that pace for a long time and you just get used to it when you live there. When we visit, my mind just kind of switches to a different gear than here in Lufkin. We smile at strangers here, wave others through 4-way stops, our rudest drivers are usually teenagers, it only takes 15 minutes to get to the farthest point anywhere in town, and you can run home for lunch. I like it much better here, this pace suits me much better, and I’m a much nicer person because of it.



I grew up in Austin so I understand the big city mentality. Everyone is rush, rush, rush, always on the go, always in a hurry…no one seems to take the time to go slow and take everyone in. Having lived in Lufkin now since 12, I am now used to the more laid back living. People around here are more able to take things in slower and not rush so much. Even though I still love the big city, I think the laid back mentality is better for you and healthier. Being in a rush all the time means more stress and that can’t be healthy for you.



Jackie Paulson 1966 says:

What a great story of real life traffic and mall in Houston TX as I have never been there. I have never been to Saks..nor wish to go in there. God bless you for enduring such a busy weekend. 🙂



I do not wish to ever go back through there! LOL
There was more to that weekend but I will put it in another post for Friday, probably.



Ah, Houston traffic… Coming from Southern California and having been to NYC, Chicago, Boston, etc, I thought the traffic mess comments were a joke. That’s until I first went to Houston and sat in traffic for an hour during every commute, to drive something like 15 miles. So, yep, Houston has horrible traffic and that’s because those people drive soooo slowly!



I KNEW I couldn’t be the only one who thinks Houston traffic is evil! LOL….Another thing I hate about it is how it can be such a nightmare to Map Quest or GPS because they are constantly working on roads and adding detours here and there! So easy to get lost if you don’t live there….in fact, I wouldn’t doubt that even people who live there have gotten lost before!



Jackie Paulson 1966 says:

ღ˚ •。* ♥ ˚ ˚✰˚ ˛★* 。 ღ˛° 。* °♥ ˚ • ★ *˚ .ღ 。
*˛˚ღ •˚ ˚…just sprinkling a little Love on your Blog˚ ✰* ★
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http://divorceissues.wordpress.com/



Thank you….I haven’t checked out your new blog yet but I plan to later…I’m not divorced so it doesn’t exactly fit me BUT you’re a nice blogging buddy so I will check it out for you!



eof737 says:

You had a very busy and fun weekend! I love reading about where people visit and what they do so I enjoyed this post very much… TY!
Eliz



[…] TheRealSharon's Blog {April 15, 2011}   A Weekend in Review, Part 2 This is a continuation of Wednesday’s post:  My Weekend in Review « TheRealSharon’s Blog. […]



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