I could handle this being my view every day!
I am all about my biggest worry being whether to go to the Pacific or the Atlantic on any given day. They have a rainy season, but I can handle that without the cold. They have awesome perks for Americans to come down there and retire, too. I just have to find out if the perks are the same for me, because I'd hate to go down there and not be allowed back! I mean, they have daily flights back home, but with me being born down there I want to make sure I don't give up my US citizenship by moving down there.
Anyway, we have lived many places since I was born including Virginia, Germany, New Mexico, and then here to South Carolina where my dad decided to retire. At the time most of our family were still in Pittsburgh, and my mom's brothers had moved to Florida so this was in the middle. I was a late attempt at a boy so I didn't move as much as my sisters did. We moved to SC when I was 12, and Dad retired when I was 15.
When we go home to Pittsburgh, people up there say I have a southern accent. People down here say I'm a Damn Yankee. Most of you know the difference between a Yankee and a Damn Yankee, right? Well, for my foreign friends, a Yankee is someone who comes down here to visit while a Damn Yankee is someone who comes down here to live. Yes, there is still a bit of a Civil War undertone to the statement, but most of the time it doesn't bother me.
Many down here still think that though I am not one of them.
One night in a bar, I won a bet because someone kept calling me a Damn Yankee. I threw $20 on the pool table and told him that I bet I was born farther south than he was. Of course, it wasn't a very fair fight, but he was a dumbass, so what did you expect me to do? He was being an ass. He threw his money down and asked where I was born. When I told him Panama, he said, "Ha! Panama City! I was born in Key West." And he tried to scoop the money up. I slammed my hand down and told him that, "I said Panama, as in the Panama Canal Zone, genius!" He swore up and down to me that Key West was still farther south. I told him if he could ever show me a map where Key West was farther south, I'd give him his money back with interest. He not only lost the bet but had to buy me a drink because I beat him at pool. He was NOT a happy camper.
Many people down here get a kick out of seeing what I'll eat and what I won't. Like I refuse to eat grits. I'm sorry, but grit is a state of mind and not a food! It's like eating Cream of Wheat, and I'm not eating that either.
There are many things that I love about the south, and many things I like to separate myself from. I'll address the elephant that is usually in the room when people from other states think of South Carolina. Personally, I think everyone needs to get over the damn Confederate flag being up in our state capital. Jesse Jackson can picket our borders forever, but it's not stopping tourism from coming here. We are basically the golf center of the US in many ways. Hell, my uncle who lives in PA goes to the beach down here more than I do. Unfortunately, they put the least literate people on the national news to talk about the flag. It's not coming down, people. And I don't think it should. To most people down here, it's simply a symbol of this state's history and them wanting to preserve state's rights and has nothing to do with slavery. There are proud people in this state, and they don't want to let it go. That's the way I see it anyway, and so do most of the people I know. (Oh, please tell me I'm not going to lose followers over this, but I had to tell my opinion! If you feel differently, feel free to say so. This isn't a debate I haven't had with others in my own state before. I respect your opinions so please respect mine.)
Okay, I really didn't mean to get off on that tangent. But you tell me... Am I a southerner because I've lived most of my life down here? Or am I a Yankee because I've lived so many other places and I was raised by two Yankees? Maybe I'm a Damn Southerner? Wait, that doesn't sound right either. I am proud either way. I couldn't believe how many down here had never been farther than Myrtle Beach, let alone outside of the state. But I guess it comes from being around the military for most of my life, even after moving here.
Stay tuned for a guest post I'm doing elsewhere later today. I think you'll enjoy it. I'm thinking tomorrow needs to be another Blast from the Past post or another funny Mom story. We'll see!