Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Where Are You From?

I was inspired by the Blogtember Challenge prompt for today - Where or Who do you come from?

Answering the WHERE question for my first 20 years of life was super quick and easy - Philly! Now, it seems it's not quite as succinct. Having met a lot of new people recently - one of the topics of conversation is always where you come from. Well, most recently I "come from" (literally) Houston, Texas...but that is only part of the story. But, who wants to be the person that gives their entire life story when people are expecting a one word answer?
Old picture from a late summer Phillies game
Philadelphia, PA is my hometown, but it's feeling less and less like "home" over the years. I love going back to Philly to visit, but there aren't as many people to see as so many have moved away. And I don't really find myself taking advantage of all the things Philly has to offer because I turn into a total homebody when I'm there - soaking up as much time with family and old friends. A few years ago I had some out of town friends come to visit me in Philly and I was struck that my knowledge of the city really ends at 18 years old. I hardly know anything about the nightlife or anything new that's opened in the past 8-10 years.

Then at 18 I went off to spend 5 years in Massachusetts, and there will probably always be a little soft spot in my heart for all the memories I made there. But the winters are too cold for me to see myself back there permanently. I've been spoiled by cities that absolutely shut down at the threat of winter weather. Still, we've found ourselves in Boston at least 3 times in the past year, with one more trip on the books - it is a wonderful place to go visit so many friends.

The Texas move was a shocker. I can remember getting the call from A. that he was moving to Houston in a week. His company doesn't give much notice when they move their trainees! I was still in Massachusetts for a few months finishing up grad school, so I got to go visit a few times before fully committing! In mid-August, my mom and I packed up my car and headed off on a road trip to Texas. Honestly, the first year was rough. I remember wondering several times what we'd gotten ourselves into - it was HOT, it was HUGE, and it was like no other place we'd known. Many Texans do not hide their disapproval of Yankees. But, when we realized we were there regardless of how we felt about it - we decided on a major attitude change. Why not enjoy all these strange, eccentric, quintessential TEXAS things? We rodeo-ed, went to Indy Car, enjoyed patio dining in February, and then sat in blasting air conditioning all summer long (minus short trips to the pool, but by June it's like a bath tub.) And now, we have separation anxiety for our life in Texas! Texas was the place that A. and I really settled into our "adult" life together - from picking a grocery store (let's face it - in college you go wherever is cheapest without regard for selection) to feeling out our routine and figuring out all the things that make us happy.

Now we're settling into North Carolina, but it isn't quite "home" yet. I'd say we've made tremendous strides in the 3 months we've been here, but it takes longer than that to settle into a routine, and figure out all your "go-to" places. But we're working on it, and enjoying figuring it out together.

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