I grew up in New Jersey. I'm a "Jersey Girl" at heart. Since getting married I've lived in Connecticut, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. We've moved around due to job changes and cost of living issues, but only recently have I ever lived out of what I would call the "tri-state" area.
A few years ago, I met a mom who had a daughter on my daughter's gymnastics team. She was from Texas. Being in the military, they moved around A LOT. She had been many, many places, and told me over and over again how she just couldn't get used to New York. The people seemed hurried, the pace was too fast. The people were nice, but they kept to themselves. She felt very out of place those few years in New York, and was excited to head south when her husband was transferred.
I understood what she was saying, but it never phased me. When you grow up in an area, it's all you know. I had great friends all my life, and I know how incredible the people are in the tri-state area. But I know because I always lived there, I never had to break down any barriers or try too hard to meet people.
Since living in Pennsylvania, I understand completely what she was saying. I am having to get used to this pace, which is definitely easier than getting used to the tri-state pace. Not everyone honks when you are unsure of where to turn and you're crawling at a green light, and I have yet to have anyone pass me on any road other than a highway.
People here say hello and wave just to say hello and wave. Total strangers. And they aren't being creepy.
Now that took a little getting used to.
Dinner is called "supper," and supper is earlier than 8pm. There are more men in trucks here than any other vehicle, and there are actually facilities who discount the more expensive tuition if you sign up a second child.
I must admit, the feeling is different when not everything you do costs $100, and there isn't that mad rush to get everywhere. The entire lifestyle is just, different.
I'm still learning and still meeting people, and not everything has been roses. I'm also missing some of the tri-state life.
Can someone please tell someone we need a Starbucks drive-thru?
But I'll be good here. My kids will be good here. Pennsylvania is taking excellent care of us, and we're enjoying the people, the slightly different culture and the country roads.