Most of you know that I was born and raised in South Carolina, and Cindy in Sunny Southern California, I had never been to California until I met Cindy and she had never been to the South, and with this said I now understand why she runs everywhere at full speed and leaves me strolling slowly behind.
We went to South Carolina back in August and Cindy got reintroduced to the laid back lifestyle that I grew up with, needless to say it about drove her crazy, pull up to a fast food joint in California and order anything, by the time you drive around to the window they are taking your money and handing your goodies to you.
In South Carolina you pull up to the speaker and give them your order, then pull around to the window and sit while they prepare your meal, get your drink, ask about your day, your kids, your Mama, and if they are talking to me the conversation only gets longer, if they are talking to Cindy the conversation usually ends with “You aint from around here are you honey?”
I kid you not I heard this several times during our trip, three different times at the same Waffle House on three different days, by three different waitresses, the first time we were with my sister and brother in law, we were all sitting and talking about how well Cindy and my family had always gotten along, I had just made the statement that Cindy fit in so well you would think she was the sister and I had married into the family.
The waitress brings our drinks and begins to take our orders, along with the sharing of her life story which we all found interesting, but yet Cindy was ready to place her order, going down the line my sister and her husband ordered, I went all out and ordered Eggs, bacon, cheese grits, a waffle, and raisin toast, with sugar free syrup to keep my blood sugar in check.
Cindy ordered almost the same thing but when it came to the grits, which is a staple in the South and comes with nearly every breakfast meal, rather than simply ask for hash browns she instead chose her words poorly by saying, “Don’t put any grits on my plate, I don’t eat those things, bring me some crunchy hash browns instead” The waitress just slowly shook her head, leaned down and said “Yall aint from around here are you honey?”
My sister, brother in law, and I almost in unison said, “I was born right here, see I ordered grits”, while Cindy at the same time said “Nope I’m from California”, and this is when the whole restaurant went silent and everyone slowly turned to look at her, as quickly as it got quiet the clatter of silverware began again real soon almost in harmony as everyone turned back to their meals.
I suggested that next time she should just say, I think I will have hash browns instead and leave it at that, but the next two times we went there she received a “You aint from around here are you honey?” followed once by a “Bless your heart” from our original waitress.
The whole family still accepts Cindy and aside from her disliking grits she still fits in just like she was there from the beginning.
Back in California she blends into the crowd just as well, she can negotiate the freeway with the best of them and switch lanes passing people like they are sitting still, I cower in the passenger seat and try to not look out the windows because even though I like Nascar racing, I don’t care much for being a passenger while my wife is bump drafting a slow car in the fast lane.
At one of the bookstores looking to buy a Bible for my Mom out of the blue a man yells to me from across the aisle, “Hey man, you aint from around hear are you?” to make a long story short about forty five minutes later a gentleman from Louisiana and I were still having a conversation, while Cindy was standing behind me whispering in my ear that we really needed to leave, I think they were trying to close the store or something but yet neither my new friend nor I were in a hurry.
A lot of people in public will randomly ask me where I am from when I speak, I am told that I have an accent, and this lead me to hear, “Where are you from?” or “You are not from California are you” so in California I get the same results Cindy does in the South.
Before we moved to California few years back, while on a visit here we were approached by a person selling family pictures, asking where we were from Cindy replied that we were living in New Mexico, then she went on to explain that she was born and raised right here in California.
With a blank look the young man replied, I would have never guessed that because it looks like you have lost your California accent, California accent? I was thinking, when Cindy pointed at me and said, its all his fault.
Where were you born and do you live there now?