Why We Love The Spectacular South
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Why We Love The Spectacular South

Why We Love The Spectacular South

The South is a place unlike any other. Simple as that. From the rich coasts of South Carolina to the sprawling hills of Georgia, everyone obsesses over the region, and with good reason. 

While I’ve fallen comfortably into a southern love, initially from the perspective of an unashamed Northern Virginian, my experience upon moving here can be summed up in two words: culture shock.

I thought that I had a relatively decent idea of what I was getting myself into -- football, cowboy boots, boys holding doors for me, that southern drawl. I was ready to escape my northern roots for a bit, and eager to see what the rest of the states had to offer. What I didn’t expect was being thrown into a place so completely opposite of where I grew up. Needless to say, Georgia has grown on me in the best ways possible, and I often find myself questioning why I didn’t move here sooner.     

My happily clogged arteries. The fried chicken. The biscuits. The sweet tea. Seriously, any stereotype you have ever heard about the South’s food is, without a doubt, 100 percent accurate. There are some good eats wherever you are in the United States, but in the South everything just tastes, well, better. Maybe it’s the crazy amount of staple ingredients such as salt and butter; maybe it’s the water, or perhaps just the love and undeniable attention that goes into making soulful dishes. Either way, me and my suspiciously high cholesterol won’t question why it’s so damn tasty.         

The South will introduce you to the greatest people you will ever meet. There’s an unacknowledged mass migration that takes place when Northerners tire of cold weather and busy cities. There are stories about families who have traveled South and never returned home. There’s a scattered group of Yankees within the ranks of Southerners. Trust me when I say that they’re real and here to stay. There are also the types of Southerners whose families have generations of members that have been in the South since before ‘the war.’ Trust me when I say they are proud and are also not afraid to tell you so. They can be quickly identified as having less of an accent and more of a drawl. These homegrown Southerners know every single back road and shortcut, most likely own a truck, and can tell you their families lineage dating back to the Revolutionary War. These are the friends you want to hold onto, as they are the best for a far-from- home’ student to go home with on long weekends: the food and the stories you’ll hear will be unforgettable.     

Southern manners are hot. When it comes to manners, the South does it best.  Although it sounds cliché, it’s important to respect your elders, virtue is still prevalent, and you better not forget it. It doesn’t matter if it’s a relative who has practically raised you or the clerk behind the counter, you best be addressing them as “ma’am” or “sir.” There is a certain element of respect between the young and the old, in the South, which has disappeared over the generations from my Northern hometown. There’s a sense of quality gentility surrounding the people who live here. It’s refreshing when someone knows who their elders are and knows how to use their manners.

Southerners know how to work hard and play harder. At the end of the day, when it comes down to the nitty gritty, you better hope that you’re hanging out with a Southern guy or gal. When the going gets tough, any Southerner will greet danger with charming wit and a cheeky grin. The South knows how to buckle up and get all their work done. Fair warning for when the weekend rolls around: you better watch out. From tailgates and barbeques, to days spent out on the lake, the weekend is taken very seriously down South. Bring a bottle of Jack D and some Coke and, nine times out of 10, you'll be the most popular fella at the party.

If you’re friends with a Southerner, life is guaranteed to be interesting. Whether it’s the first keg party of the season, or you’re frolicking around campus in the summer sun, there’s always something to do when you’re with a Southern crowd. While there’s always a fair bit of fun to be had by merely hanging out with those from the South, one thing you may not know is that people from the South love their gossip. Rumors fly around campus like nothing I have ever seen before. They spread quicker and faster than kudzu, though we’re all off to college, my friends from the south are always clued in as to the latest drama from home.

The culture down South is something everyone should experience. People fall in love with it and never want to leave. After all, who vacations to go up North? 

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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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