As Chris mentioned, it's now up and running. Unnamed phone company finally got their AT together with their T and got it working properly.
Apologies galore for our lapse in writing.
As mentioned, the blog is going through some changes. Both theme, approach, look...we might divide it into two blogs, might not, lots to discuss.
Your comments on what you'd like to see were really helpful.
All 3 of them.
So this post is mostly for those not living in Texas or the United States. If you do live in either of those places the post could still prove interesting, but it's mostly designed for those foreign to American apartment living and life in the Texas suburbs.
So, to those in Spain, England, Ireland, Australia, France, Belgium, Turkey, Canada, Norway (yes, Norway) and China (when you can get past the Great Firewall) - this one's for you. Thanks for reading.
If I had friends visiting from Europe or Asia or any other continent, I would hope they would say that Dallas, Texas is a friendly place. I would hope they would recognize the ease of buying milk or getting gas or finding donuts at 11 pm. I think they would be tickled to see how cheap common place items like trash cans and notebooks are. The Dollar Store would be an immediate favorite I'm sure.
I think they would love the Mexican food and probably crave it when they went back home.
I would hope they'd think the roads are good and customer service is adequate (this is compared to what's available in their home country of course...where most of the time sending back a meal is unheard of and returning items once opened is impossible.)
Drive through banking and ATM's would get a big thumbs up, I think.
I would think my foreign friends would enjoy the almost limitless technology available.
On the downside, I'm pretty sure they would notice how large most Americans are. I know they would find our general lack of interest in healthy physiques both startling and sad.
I know they would be frustrated at the lack of public transportation. And they would probably feel overwhelmed anytime they went to shop for something and couldn't get the salesperson off their back.
They might feel it's hard living in a country where most everyone sets their value based on house size and car price.
I get a good feeling when I'm in a country or town where value is set on how much time is spent with family, or how open-minded one is, or how great the local beer tastes!
And let's go ahead and say what no one wants to say, or hear; there are many Americans so patriotic and full of American pride, they refuse to concede there are some things that America is doing, and has done wrong.
This can be quite a turn-off to foreigners who though patriotic to a point, will easily concede there are things their country needs to improve upon.
People that have never left America and don't have anything to compare it to can't truly know what to appreciate, or not appreciate, about their own country. They don't get the chance to see that some other countries have better ideas and programs when it comes to education. And they don't get to compare banking hours abroad enough to know they appreciate that their bank doesn't take siesta.
Don't get me wrong, patriotism can be good if it's done right.
I wish every American was required to spend a total of one month on 3 different continents. That could be one week on one, one week on another, and two on another. It could be spread-out over two years or done all at once. But either way, it would lead to the majority of Americans having a larger world view.
I find myself wanting to say negative things about the US but I don't know who to say them to. I don't feel there are many people wanting to listen.
And I'm not sure why not.
Don't we want to improve? Don't we want to be the best we can be?
Then what's wrong with noting what we need to improve upon and looking to others to figure out how to do things better? We don't always have to be in the "right" or on the cutting edge.
All that being said, here's the lighter side of this post, pictures of the new apartment.
I'll take some more of the outside facilities.
For those abroad, this is not a typical apartment complex in TX. Or anywhere in the US as I know it.
We're surrounded by 8 pools, a bar, a restaurant, parks, shopping, a gym, a clubhouse, all within walking distance.
All the buildings look different and many are town homes or lofts that you can buy.
Our apartment is a simple 2 bedroom, 2 bath, and we're quite happy here. It's quite a step-up from what we were in as it has clean running water and furniture that doesn't break when you sit on it.
We do miss the little guy coming to knock on our door at random and hang a Turkish flag on our balcony.
(All pictures taken with an iPhone hence slightly questionable quality. Also, nothings been hung on the walls yet.)
Sarah's Home Office
Chris's Home Office
Come visit anytime. Mexican food and cheap notebooks await!