The Gaylord Texan Resort Hotel & Convention Center opened in Grapevine, minutes from Dallas, on April 4th, 2004. It has four hundred thousand square feet of meeting space and one thousand five hundred and eleven rooms. Steve dropped Rosie and I off and we entered luxury far beyond our expectations. The Gaylord is four and a half acres of indoor gardens and winding waterways with, restaurants, shops and a twenty-five thousand square foot day spa and fitness center. I felt like a king, standing on the balcony nine floors up, gazing out across such a wondrous place.
Views from the inside
We arrived at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport on time the next day, stood in line to book ourselves in and then seated ourselves. I bought myself a strong mug of coffee while Rosie went to the bathroom. I love to sit and watch people, often wonder where they might be heading and where they might have come from. I had just taken a couple of sips when my observations of the human serge came to an abrupt and somewhat noisy end. Suddenly a siren sounded, a voice telling us to evacuate the building. We were told not to use the elevators, but to head for the nearest exits as quickly as possible.
It’s interesting to see how people react in such a situation. Some calmly stroll off as if they are on a lazy, Sunday afternoon excursion while others run around like chickens without their heads. Others appear to be all of a sudden glued to the spot, unable to figure out what to do next. I myself had little choice but to sit where I was. Rosie was still in the bathroom and I wasn’t about to leave her there alone. Thankfully I didn’t have to wait so long. She and I headed for the nearest exit. People were pushing and shoving, trying to get through the door space as the siren continued to wire about the interior of the building. We were almost there when suddenly, the unbearable noise stopped.
Now, if there is one thing you do not want to hear after being told to evacuate an airport, it would have to be the word ‘terrorism’. As the spine-chilling sound came to an end, we were able to hear the news over the speakers. It had nothing to do with the events at Dallas/Fort Worth, although the timing couldn’t have been worse. The news reporter was talking in depth about embassy closures and the constant threat of Al-Qaeda… Osama bin Laden is gone, although the terrorist threat remains.
The very word terrorism puts ice in my bones. I hate the fact that it exists, hate the fact that there are people out there who are fully prepared to shed innocent blood, that actually believe murder and mayhem is the way to go and who think they will enter the gates of heaven by blowing themselves up on a plane or a train or a city street.
More in the continuation with the next Sweet Conclusions post …