Getting to know a new city is one of the most intimidating and extensive processes imaginable, especially when you’ve grown up in a town with a mere fraction of the population of the Houston metropolitan area alone. I’m excited to say that I don’t think that there’s really any other option but to dive right in. While I am only a native Houstonian in the sense that I was born here, my parents have lived in the city several different times, transferring in and out every so often. For my first blog post with Integrate Public Relations, I want to explore a “Then and Now” perspective of the city, so I‘ve asked my parents to take a trip down memory lane and share a little bit about their lives here as young adults, hopefully gaining some guidance and advice along the way.
My first question for Jaye and Ken (or Mom and Dad as they are more fondly known) is about transportation. I consider myself to be good with directions, not to mention I have an iPhone, GPS and a good ole fashioned road map, and I still manage to take a wrong turn every now and then, thereby accidentally managing to double my travel time. Due to his impeccably accurate intuition, of course my dad never got lost! Mom tells me that one of the worst things about Houston traffic then was that if (more like when) you got stuck in traffic behind an accident, there was no way to tell anyone that that was the case… Like when trying to pick up your son from day care, for example. Dad also mentions that traffic back in the early ‘80’s didn’t start really backing up on I-10 going into town until east of Gessner, good luck not tapping your brakes before hitting Hwy 6 now.
Houston is known for its exceptional restaurant scene, so I wanted to know if there are any staple places they remember going, because I really can’t pass up the chance to explore a new restaurant (…well, new to me). Does Lantern Inn, Brenner’s Steakhouse, Mason Jar or Cadillac Bar ring a bell to any of you Houston lifers out there? Mom also made sure to tell me that they were here when Landry’s, the Pappas family and Goode Co. opened their first locations. Some things just get better with time!
My parents still visit Houston on a fairly regular basis, and I want to know how their impressions of the city change every time they return; it all seems to change so fast. Dad tells me the biggest change he has seen in the city is the evolution of downtown; it would have been completely deserted after 6 p.m. Although Houston has always been a great place for young professionals to live, my dad elaborates that there used to be a larger majority of “oilfield” professionals, and that the city is far more international and diversified these days.
And lastly, my mom tells me that she and my dad lived in Houston when movies like Urban Cowboy and Terms of Endearment were being filmed and released… giving the rest of the nation and parts of the world quite an interesting impression of the great city of Houston, Texas.
Now that I’m out and about in the city alone, it is my turn to battle the traffic, eat all the fantastic food I can, and make my own memories. Houston here I come!
Posted by Allison Huseman