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Toto, Dude, we're not in California anymore!
By: Jack Severens


I moved to North Carolina in 2006 from California and I have to say that this is definitely different.  To be more specific I moved here from Orange County (Southern California)  I absolutely love it here in spite of (and because ) the differances.

First of all there’s the trees.  Oh, the glorious trees!  You have to understand that where I came from in California if you saw a tree it was because a landscape architect decided that it would be planted there.  Here in North Carolina the trees are everywhere and they are so beautiful. 

And then of course there are the seasons.  The seasons in Southern California consisted of Sunny, hot and sunny, smoggy and sunny and overcast.  Here there is Summer, winter, Spring and Fall.  Oh and fall is amazing.  Wow, the colors!  Who came up with all of those colors?  I am so appreciative of all of the beautiful sights that are created by the trees.  I especially love the reflection of the beautiful colored leaves in Lake Norman on an afternoon when the lake is crystal smooth.

I love the accents!  This is going to sound really prejudice but I used to think that people with southern accents were stupid.  I think that is the way that folks with southern accents are portrayed on television.  And then I met some really incredibly smart people with thick southern accents and I was somewhat surprised.  I shouldn’t have been, but I was.  What a silly thing to think isn’t it.


Even the products in the store are somewhat different.  Take for example Dukes mayonnaise.  I never saw Duke’s mayonnaise until I moved to North Carolina.  Now I won’t buy anything else.

You should have seen the look on my face the first time I saw a vending machine with bait in it.  The first thought that came to my head was, “this is a joke right?”  But it wasn’t .  In some places you can buy live bait from a vending machine.  Wow, what will they think of next?

I had no idea what an ABC store was before I moved here.  My kids thought that it was a place that people went to be tutored in their reading.  You see, in California they sell alcohol everywhere: in the grocery store, in the gas station, at the convenience store.  Like everywhere (that sounded like a Californian didn’t it…Like everywhere, Dude)

And then of course there’s the thing with Hey !  I remember the first time that I realized that I was going to need to lose “Hi” from my vocabulary.  I took the family to Grandfather mountain for a hike.  As we hiked up the trail and then back down we must have passed 50 groups of hikers.  I was so used to saying hi that I had trouble saying “hey”  But now after being here for over 2 years I have pretty much lost the phrase “hi”.  I miss it sometimes.  If you see me and I say hi forgive me.  I’m not trying to be rude, I’m just using it to ease my passing home sickness.

 



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Toto, Dude, we're not in California anymore!
By: Jack Severens
   
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