The Lawns Abide -- These lawns didn't get so pristine on accident. In North Texas, HOAs run a tight ship.
In Part 1, we gave you some restaurant tips. In Part 2, we gave you some family fun ideas. Now, in our final installment of 99 More Things About North Texas, we’re just telling you a few things we’ve noticed since we’ve been here. Some are good, some are bad. But we hope all will be useful.
So, enough stalling, let’s get the third and final part of 99 More Things About North Texas (The “We Live Here Now”) edition.
Oh, and if you want to check out the original 99 Things About North Texas list (that’s right, we’ve given you 198 things), just click right here.
Just Some Friendly Texas Advice
67. Most new communities have a Home Owners Association (above), which keeps the community looking beautiful and pristine. But many HOAs are very strict. Want a basketball hoop in your driveway? Make sure your HOA won’t send you sternly worded letters before you climb the ladder to install.
68. If you’re in a building with double doors, chances are one of those doors will be locked for no apparent reason. Which one? The one you’ll try to open first. And then you’ll feel kind of dumb. And then you’ll feel kind of angry because, seriously, why is this door locked?
69. There’s no way to put this lightly. A lot of people here drive with a disregard for those around them. Turn signals are unicorns, you’ll always have someone cruising in your blind spot, and the person in front of you will be going 5 under while the person behind you goes 10 over. Defensive driving is not just smart, it’s necessary.
70. More on driving: The definition of “yield” in driving situations in most of the U.S.: Let others go first. Proceed when safe. The definition of “yield” in Dallas: Do not slow down. Do not look to see what you are merging into. Just go.
71. Coming from California? The amount of places that still use Styrofoam will shock you.
72. And they still use plastic bags at the grocery store.
73. Just 10 years ago, most locals would have told you downtown Dallas is a wasteland populated by tallish buildings and fleeing commuters.
74. But there’s a revitalization going on in the center of the city, with trendy restaurants popping up all over the place.
75. Not only is 7-Eleven headquarters are in Dallas, but the first 7-Eleven opened its doors in Dallas in 1927. So it shouldn’t be surprising that 7-Elevens come up about every two blocks.
76. Let’s talk about Mexican food. It’s mostly Tex-Mex here. Which means lots of ground beef and shredded cheese. It’s not bad, not at all.
This Came From the Sky -- Really though, 4-inch wide hail falls from the sky from time to time. Ice balls this
size will crater your roof and bust your windshield. Best advice? Make sure you have a garage and good insurance.
77. Some days, you’ll have to leave work early to avoid getting caught in a storm that may include wind, rain, hail, snow or tornadoes.
78. Don’t take this lightly. Last year, a coworker went through the insurance claim process after softball-sized hail poked a few holes in his roof.
79. Actually, it hailed pretty badly this past Sunday night in Dallas’ Northern suburbs. So, yeah, weather is a thing here.
80. The saying “April Showers Bring May Flowers” is true in Texas. But May showers bring June heat, too. May is the area’s wettest month, with nearly five inches of rain on average. And then in June, the heat sets in.
81. The severity of summer heat is measured by the amount of 100-degree days. By that metric, last summer wasn’t that bad. But take that with a grain of salt, because no matter how “mild” the summer is, it’s still hot as all get out.
82. “School zones” are not a suggestion. Tickets abound in school zones so pay attention to those flashing yellow lights and go 20 mph – not 21mph, not 22mph.
83. You could spend a whole week in Nebraska Furniture Mart and still not see everything.
84. If you live in a suburb, the mayor and city council members respond to your questions/concerns immediately. That’s how one team member managed to get internet to her house in Prosper.
85. We’re still looking for decent Japanese food that is reasonably priced. And we’re also looking for Japanese noodle shops. But try Tei An downtown.
86. It takes, at most, about 30-45 minutes by car to get to most places in North Dallas area, but those toll roads’ costs start to add up.
87. Every suburb is exploding in population, which is great for enticing local businesses and property values. But it makes it hard to find a good available handyman.
The Great Texas Gas Giveaway -- Less than $20 to fill up your Prius for two weeks? Yes, please. But we're in Texas, so you may have to spend a little more to gas up that Tundra.
88. Gas is so cheap here, it almost feels like they're giving it away.
89. When you move here, you will gain weight.
90. And the first few weeks, you’ll be so exhausted you won’t want to get out of bed.
91. But it all goes away and life returns to normal pretty quickly. Just find a gym as soon as you can. Luckily, our new headquarters will have a top-notch fitness center.
92. DFW makes LAX look well-designed and efficient. When you arrive for departure, be sure to remember your gate number, otherwise you’re going to get lost before you even get dropped off.
93. Instead, try to use Dallas Love Field Airport
. Love Field is perfectly located off the Tollway, about 20 miles south of TCAL. The tiny airport is the Southwest hub, and also features Delta gates. If you have TSA Pre-check, you can be out of the car and through security in about 5-10 minutes.
94. Use the four-lane-wide surface streets that parallel the toll roads. In most cases, it won't take that much longer to get where you're going and you'll save some dough.
Long and Winding Paved Road -- Hiking is a bit different in North Texas parks.
95. If you're into hiking, be forewarned that many of the trails here are paved in concrete. Which is, well, kind of weird.
96. If you build it… Nearby Frisco and McKinney are among the fastest-growing cities in the country. In 2015, Frisco’s population rose 5.8 percent (adding 8,000 people), while MicKinney’s rose 5 percent (7,600 people.).
97. And those numbers are going up. Frisco Mayor Maher Maso told the Dallas Morning News
last year that most of the people who will ultimately settle in Collin County aren’t here yet. Maso estimates the county will reach about 2.5 million residence in the next 25 years. So come on out. They’re expecting you.
98. The Frisco Independent School District is one of the top-rated in the state.
99. “King of the Hill” writer and creator Mike Judge grew up in Garland, which is where the hit animation TV is set in (though they slightly changed the name in the show from “Garland” to “Arlen,” it’s still the same place).