From Culture Shock to Love

From Culture Shock to Love
By Shaina Robinson

As a northerner from Michigan, I began preparing myself a couple of days before coming to this summit in Salisbury, NC for some southern culture shock.

The last time I had eaten food in the South, I hadn't had the best experience. I had gone down to breakfast hoping to get some some porridge and when I saw some on the table I was ecstatic. The food that I thought was porridge though turned out to be grits and despite how many times people told me that the two foods were different, I was sure that they would taste the same. I mean they look similar right? Well, as I would soon learn, porridge and grits are different foods and needless to say I never quite thought about grits in the same way again.

But now that I'm here at Catawba at the Environmental Summit for high school students, I've had the chance to try southern food again, and I really enjoy it!

Of course there are other aspects of the south that have surprised me and some of my fellow northerner counterparts. In order to get their "takes" on it, I decided to ask them about their experiences in the south and how it has affected them so far.

Rafaello (Massachusetts) - "I hate how humid it is in the South, Bu,t aside from that,I really enjoyed it here. I love southern accents. I don't know why, but something about them is so cool. I like southern food quite a bit, though there doesn't seem to be as much for vegeterians. It seems to me that people in the South are overall nicer than people from the North."

Justine (Michigan) - "I think that the South is a really interesting place. I definitely get the feel of "southern hospitality" as everyone I have met have been so nice. The climate and accents are hard to deal with sometimes, but I feel that we all understand each other as friends and have the same goal and reasons to why we have come to this summit."

Emily (New York) - "I live in upstate New York, and I love it there. Sometimes I wish it could be warmer, but it's in the North so I can't really change that. Besides it being very hot and humid, I've noticed that everyone here is so friendly and welcoming. My mom's big family lives in Maryland and we visit them a lot, but as soon as I arrived here at Catawba College for this summit, I immediately noticed a difference in the culture, and I have to say that I love it as much as where I live (if not more)."  

So there you have it folks! Despite some initial hesitance we've all come to find qualities of the South that we enjoy and appreciate. Thanks for having us down here and feel free to visit us all up north!

Grits . . . maybe they are an acquired taste.


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