11 Signs You're A NOVA Girl In Southwest Virginia
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11 Signs You're A NOVA Girl In Southwest Virginia

Okay but where is the Sephora around here

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11 Signs You're A NOVA Girl In Southwest Virginia
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I was born and raised in Northern Virginia. I did not really get a taste of how another part of the country lived until I moved to West Virginia for two years for school. When I came back home, I once again became engulfed in the strangely unique lifestyle of being from Northern Virginia. When I moved to Radford, all of my previous culture shock came back. There is something very unique about Southwest Virginia. But the saying is true, absence really does make the heart grow fonder.

1. You Find it Ridiculous you Have to Drive so Much to Get to Anything

When I lived in Fairfax, just about everything was in a ten-minute drive, even Washington DC was only around 30 minutes to get to. Just from my house alone, I could walk to a Walmart, a Target, 3 different grocery stores, four different Starbucks, and countless fast food restaurants. In Radford, if you want to go anywhere to do anything, you're driving. Walking is pretty much out of the question.


2. You Daydream About Food from Different Countries

You always take for granted the littlest of things. When I'm sick or it's a rainy day, my family gets Pho, a Vietnamese noodle soup which I can only humbly compare to the best chicken noodle soup you'll ever have (and that's just Pho Ga, the chicken version, it comes in tons of varieties). As soon as I got sick here, the first thing I craved was a big steaming bowl of Pho.

Unfortunately for me, the nearest Pho restaurant is a 45-minute drive one way. I love my soup, but I'm not sure if I'm willing to drive two hours for it. There were five Pho restaurants within a ten-minute drive from my house, one was within walking distance too!


3. People Knowing Everyone in Town is a Foreign Concept

I went to a super-school where the class sizes were in the hundreds. I remember on my graduation day hearing names of people I had never heard of before, and half of them had been going to school with me for six years! When I talk to people from Southern Virginia, they have the unique ability to know everyone. Not only do they know everyone, but they know everything that's going on in those people's lives too.

I used to think it was interesting if I saw one of my neighbors at Target because some of them I've only seen like 25 times since they've moved in 15 years ago. Northern Virginia is a small part of Virginia where no one talks to each other, Southern Virginia is a giant piece of Virginia where everyone talks to everyone.



4. You Miss How Easy it was to Attend Things

Every time a comedian, singer, or band I like releases tour dates, 98% of the time they are stopping at the Verizon Center in Washington DC or they're performing at the smaller Eagle Bank Arena in Fairfax. If you're lucky, sometimes they perform at both and you get a choice. My favorite comedian just released her tour dates for the new year. Is Washington DC on the list? Of course. Is Radford, Virginia? Nope.

In fact, the closest venue is all the way in Richmond! I couldn't find a way to go to the DC show because it's on a Wednesday and the thought of driving five hours both ways in one night doesn't sound amazing. The only reason I get to see Lady Gaga this year is because it's on Thanksgiving Break!


5. Missing Dunkin Donuts

This is totally an example of "you don't know what you've got 'till it's gone". The sickly, over sugared, grainy on the bottom iced coffee from Dunkin Donuts is a guilty pleasure of mine. Sure, Starbucks makes a good cup but Dunkin Donuts could make two cups of iced coffee the size of your head for the price of one drink from Starbucks. There is nothing more dangerous than me and a drive-through Dunkin Donuts. The lack of commercialized, mass-produced donuts and breakfast sandwiches is truly a tragedy, one that the people of Radford Virginia just don't understand.


6. Being Marveled by How Nice the Drivers are

I know everyone from everywhere says and thinks they come from a place with bad drivers. I am here to say, you guys really haven't driven unless you've driven in NOVA traffic. Not only are speed limits completely ignored, but road rage is as common as green grass. The use of turn signals and letting people over is a fabled myth, so imagine my reaction when the first time I had to change lanes in Radford, someone let me over the second I flipped on my turn signal.

I can actually remember saying "Oh great, I guess I'm never getting over." to myself and then...someone actually let me in. If you think I'm over exaggerating about the road rage, I have personally witnessed someone get out of their car and beat someone up for cutting the line at the gas station.


7. You Find Yourself With Some Strong Thoughts on the Speed Limits

Even though you absolutely adore how nice the drivers are here, there's one thing you can't get over, the speed limits. The speed limits in some areas are incredibly high and everyone drives fast. But in some areas the speed limits are incredibly incredibly slow. Not only are they slow, but the drivers here follow the speed limit signs religiously. You couldn't even speed if you wanted to. As much as I love nice drivers, sometimes I just want to speed a little!


8. Your Friends Think it's Funny When you Say Southern Slang

Some words and phrases just stick to you like a sponge. You come back home only to have your friend's mock you for saying y'all or their personal favorite: all y'all. The worst part is that you don't even realize you're saying them either. Look, technically all of Virginia is in the south, no matter what we in NOVA want to think!


9. You Gain 5 Pounds When You Come Home to Visit

See how half the entries on this list are food related? That's for a reason. I don't care how much I've been working out or how many pounds I've lost this semester. When I go home to visit, you bet your butt I am visiting every single one of my favorite restaurants at least once! Who knows, I might get to hit a few places up twice! Hellllllooooo yoga pants.


10. You are Disappointed by the Shopping Scene

The ability to get whatever your heart desires in NOVA is abundant. There are three shopping malls in driving distance and countless strip malls. I have even gotten brand new designer clothing at the local Goodwill (yes, seriously). The resale stores are great too because you can get really nice things for half the price. In Radford? I'll have to drive 35 minutes to get to the nearest ULTA and 15 to get to the nearest Target.


11. Your Definition of What Counts as a Snow Day Changes

When I was in Fairfax County Public Schools, we had our fair share of snow days. We had a few days that SHOULD have been snow days too, and one year we even got out of school because it was raining really hard. In Southern Virginia, a complete dump of snow mightget you out if you're lucky. It truly makes me wish for the days we got out of school just rain.


Getting to be from Northern Virginia is an amazing blessing, but getting to go to school in the South West is too! I truly get to experience the best of both worlds. Hannah Montana would be proud.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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