culture shock 101: a northerners guide to the south

Whether you’re moving for school, trying it out for a couple of years or relocating for the long haul, it’s a fact that moving from the North to the South is going to be an adjustment. Here are some things to expect, from one outsider to another.

  1. Southern hospitality is real.


That’s not to say you won’t meet someone rude, or that some people aren’t faking it, but overall, everyone is friendly. Strangers say hello on the street and when someone asks how you’re doing they actually wait to hear the answer.


  1. The hair is bigger and the heels are higher.


It’s not that every single girl has perfect curls, heavy make-up and unbelieving high pumps but most of them do. Apparently debutante balls actually exist, and you’ll likely meet a few proud albums.


  1. Snow is the end of the world.


It’s hard to imagine panic over half an inch, but when they’re no infrastructure in place to handle it, the entire city shuts down. If the forecast predicts snow, do yourself a favor and stay home. You might be a pro at driving in it, but you don’t want to share the roads with those who aren’t.


  1. There’s no way to avoid the lingo.


No matter how much you promise yourself you won’t start saying ya’ll or ma’am or sir, give it a couple months and all of a sudden you sound like you’re in an old lifetime movie set in rural Georgia.


  1. Move over freshman fifteen.


Moving to the land of fried food, BBQ chicken and gravy sounds great, but after a while, your waistline is going to ask what the hell you’re doing and beg you for a damn salad.


  1. Gossip is an art form.


They say that Southerners talk about you just as much, they just do it behind you’re back, and it’s so true. Good luck keeping secrets down here.


  1. College football is king.


Forget pro sports, down South, everyone only pays attention to ACC matchups. Don’t bother trying to find a sports bar on a game night unless you’re prepared to show up hours early.

  1. No one knows how to drive.


And it’s not just in snow. Unlike the fast-paced North with aggressive drivers who cut each other off, in the South people like to take their sweet time and drive like turtles. Which, depending on your road rage threshold, can be even worse.


  1. Few people dress like cowboys.


Turns out it’s tourists who mostly wear the boots and hats, go figure.


  1. Some people hate country music.


Don’t worry, they’re the minority,


  1. You can’t ignore the Second Amendment


Billboards for gun shows and purchases at the local store are everything. Also, who knew pro-NRA bumper stickers actually existed?


  1. You might never want to leave.


It’s not for everyone, but some just can’t resist that Southern charm, incredible food, and warm weather. So stay for a while, and see how it feels. If it doesn’t work out, you can always go home.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s