That huge ball that sits on the tower beside the shiny, glass building on the west side of Dallas. It is a landmark, and a distinguishing piece of architecture. Ben wanted to go there last year for his birthday, but it was being remodeled. So, this year, I made reservations. Reservations. And there is a dress code..."business casual". (no tee shirts, no flip flops, no tennis shoes)
The tower parking is downhill from the Hyatt Hotel. And I do mean downhill. And then you get to ride an escalator down to a "lobby" level, but it feels like the basement to check in and ride the elevator five hundred and sixty feet up. The outside seating area on a wooden floor slides around one whole circle in an hour. The movement is nicely slow and almost imperceivable, thankfully, and we got to watch the sun go down and a spectacular sunset.
Couples got the tables by the windows, but our table still had a great view, and I had a huge couch to myself. Ben chose the fish, and Bob and I chose the prime rib for two. The waiters---yes, we had two, warned us that the prime rib would take 40 minutes. At 40 minutes, another cook wandered out to show us a chunk of charred meat, but then he mumbled something we could not understand in the loud music and disappeared with the meat for another twenty or thirty minutes. I kid you not. We should have made him set it down, as we were ravenous. And by the time someone carved it, it was cold. The sauces on the "drunken noodles" were both sweet and hot, so my lips felt like they were glowing while we waited for dessert. Ben ordered a Baked Alaska, as he had never had one of those. Wild huckleberry sauce was swirled on one side, and "Happy Birthday" was written in cursive on the other. A sparkler candle was stuck in the Baked Alaska. Bob and I split a cheesecake.
If the chef were to ask my opinion, I would advise bread or salad to help fill you up. The meat was good, and plentiful, but whoa...not good to send people away hungry. And Ben's fish was sufficient, but serve it on a smaller plate, folks. Ben ate some of Bob's meat. What is it about gourmet food served on a huge plate? It makes the food look small, and are we suppose to gasp at the art? Even art looks funny in a too big frame.
Amazing views. Good thing Ben's birthday fell on a clear day! The waitress said you could see nothing the day before in all the rain.
Ben remembered a cheesecake shaped like the tower from years ago...so maybe he had taken a date there before? Now I am curious about finding a book on how it was built and how it works. It was fun to see waitresses come out of the center kitchen doors, and take their bearings. At one point, I headed to where I thought the bathrooms were, and the waiter re-directed me to a shorter rotation. I sure wondered about that open drain in the floor---did it go all the way down?
It was fun. Fun to honor Ben on his birthday. And fun to hear Ben brag to his brother on the phone on the drive home..."where did mom and dad take YOU on your 22nd birthday?" The competition continues...even as grown brothers. (when all together, they compare chest hair, as if that is a sign of true manliness...and I am sure Ben wins that competition every time!)
On Andy's 22nd, he would have been on his second senior year in college? Engaged? James would be less than a month from meeting his future bride. I did take the opportunity to suggest Ben propose to his future wife from Reunion Tower in eight or nine years. No hurry. Just because his brothers are married, we don't have to compete. I take this opportunity at every chance I get---pointing out that his uncle waited for a wonderful wife until he was thirty, and Bob waited until he was 26 to meet and marry me. Best to wait for the right one.
It was fun. Memorable. And as we lay in bed last night, I kept chuckling at the different things---like wishing we had insisted the waiter with the meat leave the hunk of charred prime rib with us...the first time he waved it in front of our noses.
And since each section had two waiters---tip each of them 20 percent? And a little carpeting might eat some of the noise. I'm just sayin'. The photographs are pretty on one section of the inner column. Photographs of what you are seeing out the window in a twenty-four hour period. The moon rises in five of them. The oberservation deck must be one level below the fancy gourmet eating establishment. Oh, yeah, Ben ate the sushi. He even put the hot wasabi on each rice encircled wad.
I am so glad I remembered to bring James' digital camera...as you have plenty of time to play around with it. And I want to remember Bob and Ben gestulating with their hands about where different landmarks are. And watching Ben and Bob keep track of how many times we went around. Early on, while in the 'lounge' area, we watched someone's OU baseball cap glide by. The waitress said that ladies set their purses on the wall that does not move all the time. Too funny.