Growing Up In The South Means You'll Say, "Amen" To These 10 Things
It's true — you can take the girl out of the south, but you can never take the south out of the girl. Even now that I live on the West Coast, I'm still constantly craving my southern food, missing humid summer nights, and occasionally letting a "y'all" or two slip out when I speak. If you also grew up below the Mason- Dixon line, you know that growing up in the south pretty much made you who you are today.
You can't deny that the place you come from is now part of your DNA. Even if you end up moving away, you'll always feel at home when you meet someone else with southern roots. They will remind you of things like hurricane season, Publix subs, and chicken fried steak. You love talking about all these things, because they take you back home to your childhood and your comfortable place.
My happy place is sitting on a porch in a rocking chair, sipping on a cool sweet tea while enjoying a gentle rain. Your happy place probably includes a few of these as well, and when you read these 10 things that people who grew up in the south can relate to, you'll be saying, "amen."
1. Sweet Tea Is Your Drink Of Choice
I'll never forget the look on the waiter's face when I moved to New York, and tried to order sweet tea at a restaurant for the first time. I still don't understand why this delicious drink hasn't spread to other regions of the country. If you've had real southern sweet tea, you know that there is no other drink you need to be sipping on.
2. You Know How To Handle Humidity
Humidity is real in the south. In the summertime, walking out the door can sometimes feel like you've walked into a sauna. It may sound a bit dramatic, but you grew up in this climate and know how to work it like a pro. In fact, you know all the secrets like managing your hair in the intense humidity.
3. You Know Publix Really Is "Where Shopping Is A Pleasure"
Just like my sweet tea, I had no idea that Publix wasn't available everywhere else until I moved north. I know every region has their own grocery store chain that they claim is the "best ever," but I don't think most people truly understand what makes Publix so special. From their subs to their cookies, they have the most delicious food. Plus, shopping really "is a pleasure" when you're walking around a Publix, and now I know heaven is a place on Earth.
4. You're Used To Dealing With Hurricane Season
Some kids get snow days, but we always had hurricane days. It may sound scary to some outsiders, but you know that most hurricane days meant staying indoors with your family and friends, watching TV until the power went out. Some of my favorite hurricane days consisted of hanging with my friends, building blanket forts, and playing charades by flashlight.
5. You Refer To All Sodas As "Coke"
Some people call soda, "pop," so I don't know why people get thrown off so much when you call soda, "coke." When you want a carbonated beverage, you usually refer to it as a coke, even if you're not planning on getting Coca-Cola. I can see how it may be confusing, but just know coke to a southern girl could mean anything from Root Beer to Sprite.
6. You Know Southern Food Can't Be Beat
If you want to make a southern girl's stomach growl, you just have to mention fried okra, collared greens, hash brown casserole, and grits. My mouth is watering just thinking about all the tasty southern delights. I bet you didn't know you could fry up just about any vegetable, and make it amazingly delicious. If you think you've had the best meal of your life, I hope you're referring to a home-cooked southern meal, or else I don't know if you've truly lived.
7. Football Is Very Important To Your Family
Football isn't just a sport in the south — it's a way of life. You lived for football games, and cheering on your team. Rivalries are very real, and very big. Your family was very loyal to one team, and fights would happen if you ever admitted to opposing them.
8. You Were Very Into Vera Bradley At One Point
Growing up, you and your friends were most likely a fan of Vera Bradley bags. I wanted to get every backpack and purse in every new brightly colored pattern available, but unfortunately, I didn't have the money for it all. Not only did your squad need some Vera Bradley, but you also fell into the trend of monogramming it, too. Initials definitely helped you and your friends differentiate between all of your matching pink mini backpacks.
9. The Sound Of Rainstorms Puts You To Sleep
The south is no stranger to rainstorms. They happen so often that it feels like when they come, they're right on schedule. You knew how to count how far away a storm was by how many seconds it took to hear the thunder after seeing the lightning. Now, when you need a soothing sound to fall asleep to, a gentle rainstorm is your go-to.
10. When People Ask You Where You're From, You Have To Say The Closest City
I always use the same dialogue when someone asks me where I'm from. I tell them my hometown, and the confused look on their face causes me to just tell them, "Orlando." If you're from a small town, you almost always refer to the closest city to you and your hometown. One day, I'm hoping someone knows where Merritt Island, Florida is.