Monday, September 24, 2007

Adventures in recruiting : Panhandle Day 1

Well it all started out with a delayed flight. I was supposed to leave DFW at 815, but we did not end up leaving until 9. And the plane was really cramped... This will teach me to fly a regional jet with American Eagle. It was literally a sardine can.

However, when we got to Amarillo, the weather made up for it because it was nice and crisp which is something that I cannot say about the weather in the Metroplex.

I picked up my car from the rental company and it was a Kia Rondo. It wasn't quite what I had envisioned, but it works. I didn't think that Enterprise would carry foreign cars (although Kia's are pretty cheap which may be the reason that they have it). So after getting my car, I went to the OTHER Hampton Inn in town because I had inadvertently given the front office staff the wrong address to ship my materials to. I had to wait in line for 10 minutes to get my stuff because the receptionist was booking some major party or event of some kind.

After I grabbed my 8 boxes of stuff, I headed to the big town of Dalhart. This is in the northern part of the TX Panhandle and it approximately 15 minutes away from New Mexico. (Side note : I totally wanted to go to NM, but I told the dude at the car place that I would not take the car out of state and I only got about 2 hours of sleep last night, so I figured that I would go back to my hotel so I can just relax because this will be the only day like this that I will get to hangout for the night and not have any night programs.)

On the way to Dalhart I encountered a lot of hills and red dirt. Supposedly this area is hilly and contains plateaus... It was very nice.. Very picturesque of a desert. I think that I did more 'sightseeing' than actual road watching.

There were 3 schools in attendance at the program. The genius staff at Dalhart High School, the host school, thought that it would be a 'good idea' to have their kids have the recruiters sign a piece of paper saying that the student 'visited' with a recruiter and gained some knowledge about the college admissions process. Well they were wrong. Students just came up to me and said, "Would you sign this?" I replied with "Do you have any questions about UNT that I can help you with?" and they replied, "I don't know" or "No." This was frustrating because it was waisting my time and the time of the other recruiters who were talking with students who really cared about college and weren't just "trying to get the grade."

So after I left the program, I decided to take a different way back to Amarillo to see some other places and I got to drive through Dumas. This is a small to medium size town and it actually had stoplights. It was the only one that I encountered besides Amarillo with stop lights. It was cool seeing Dumas because my roommate for Orientation at UNT was from Dumas and now I have an appreciation of where he was coming from.

Upon arriving back to my hotel, I watched the local NBC station's 5 PM newscast. It was definitely different than a large market newscast. They did the whole weather cast within the first 5 minutes of the show, whereas others will save it for 15 minutes in the show. And the weatherperson had no flow. She was about as bad as me when it comes to speaking. She kept stumbling across her words and would loose track of what she was trying to convey. **There is going to be a cold front coming through tonight so it will get even cooler. Tomorrow, it is not supposed to get any warmer than the low 80's and will be in the high 50's at night time!! Can you say "sweater weather?"

Following the newscast, I went over to Cracker Barrel by myself for dinner. It was tasty. I had meat loaf. It just kinda sucked because I didn't have anybody to talk to, but I don't know the other recruiters here and I haven't seen any of my friends from last week, but maybe I will run into somebody tomorrow.

I then checked out the local grocery store. Here they are called United. It is a locally owned chain similar to HEB. I bought some "Dr. U" and some Root Beer. I just had a root beer and it was pretty good. Not as good as HEB, but it can have a spot up there.. It is cool to go into a grocery store because it can tell you a lot about a community. It tells who lives in the area and what the income range is. This store had a lot of Hispanic fares which I did not expect from this area because it is so far away from the border. They also had good prices on produce. A head of cabbage was $0.49 a pound, whereas that would be $1.69 a pound in the Metroplex. Milk prices were comparable to the Metroplex, $3.89 a gallon. I think that will be a constant trend as milk prices everywhere are expected to rise.

Tonight I will do my report and probably go to bed after the News at 10 to try to catch up on some lost sleep.

Tomorrow, I will be heading south to Hereford and I have to run by Amarillo College and then hangout at the Amarillo Conference Center for another program tomorrow night.

Off to the ironing board.. Literally, I have to iron my clothes for tomorrow.. :)

Photo Credit: This is from the Cadillac Ranch to the West of town. I passed this today on my way to Dalhart.. It was pretty cool. Just random cars sticking out from the ground.

1 comment:

Ryan F. said...

Despite you're troubles with the airport and other logistics, it sounds like you're having a good time. Just to be away from the normal hustle of DFW life for a little while sounds nice. Have a great time and may your recruiting be plentiful....and don't get lost in the desert!!