On Seeing South Dallas For the First Time

8 Apr

Dilapidated  houses.  Drugs.  Violence.  Despair.  These things come to mind with mention of Dallas’ most notorious section of the city.

So, when my date said that South Dallas was the location of our  destination, I was less than thrilled.

But Robert seemed confident that I would love whatever we were going to see.

That fateful Sunday evening, as passing the row of liquor stores and food joints, we turned down a dirt road where a long stream of cars were slowly rolling, in single file.

On all sides, people in parked cars, stood outside, talking, drinking and people-watching.  It was a modest parade, where guys with the latest cars modeled their vehicles for onlookers. The procession pushed on, ending at a parking lot enclosing a park.  Police cars greeted us at its  entrance.

Once inside, we drove onto a deserted part of the parking lot and jumped out.  He led me down to a sparsely populated area—only a Latino family shared our space.  It was beautiful.  A pond with ducks.  Under the sunset.  A hidden gem of rough South Dallas.

Now, whenever I think of the area, the image of a quiet evening spend pondside stands brilliantly among the images of despair and fear. I now think twice before discounting the area.  Perhaps the oasis hidden in a most unexpected place is a metaphor: Everything and everyone has a hidden gem inside.

We just have to be willing to look.

The city is now investing in the area’s potential:

Bexar Street Revitalization Project



2 Responses to “On Seeing South Dallas For the First Time”

  1. Aishwarya April 8, 2011 at 9:44 pm #

    I loved this post! I hope South Dallas is given more attention from the state. I was in the city for two weeks and loved it! The people are so warm and friendly :-). Keep your posts coming, I enjoy reading them.


  2. lcooksmarketer1 April 26, 2011 at 6:01 pm #

    Ash! I’m just now seeing your comment. Thank you! The city’s leaders are running out of land in the north and now have to turn to the Southern areas of city for development. Change is finally coming. I’m glad you had a good time in Dallas. It definitely still has that famous Southern hospitality. Let me know next time you’re here, chica.
    As always, thanks for your support!


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