Dion M. Harris
Vast. Surprisingly diverse. Hellaciously hot. Tons of shopping!
These are my initial thoughts, impressions and ruminations on Texas, where I recently set up house. While trying for a year to get to Oregon. Fantastically: Love interceded. And here I am, a Bayou born-and-raised, granola-eating mountain gal. Slightly off-kilter at the grueling commutes, but pleased as pie to be here and fitting in just fine.
I never imagined I’d ever live in Texas. Texas was always that place that took up a full day’s worth of driving to and from The Rockies. Texas was the home of cowboys, oil barons and three-strikes-you’re-out justice. A business writer, I also knew it as one of the handful of states in the Union without a state income tax.
Unlike many of my Crescent City brethren and sistren, though, Houston was never a place that I visited, shopped or evacuated to. It was just clean off of my radar. Until I met L, at a wedding, in February.
The term whirlwind might not do the courtship justice, but here I am today, mostly situated and writing in Texas: happy, loved and provided for. Attempting another foray into the corporate world after a long, entrepreneurial absence.
Opportunity exists in Houston. According to Wikipedia, 57 Fortune 500 companies were headquartered throughout the state in 2010. (Texas shared top honors only with California.)
With more than 2.2 million inhabitants, Houston is the largest city in Texas and the fourth-largest city in the nation. Houston is ground-zero for the oil and gas industry, confirmed personally by me last weekend with a jaw-dropping glance at the roster of airlines operating out of George Bush International Airport. Many of the airlines are from the Middle East. Incidentally, Texas is the world’s second-largest oil producer. Second only to Saudi Arabia.
I see Houston, Texas, with new eyes. “Don’t Mess With Texas” has taken on a whole other resonance for this Creole queen.
Texas is not only open for business; Texas means business. It gets things done. Government works. People work and prosper. Companies are good corporate citizens. The quality of life is high here. The pace of life is fast. Corporate-based. Considered.
Houston is a booming metropolis. I’m playing catch-up.
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