I come from the deep South, where life is more rural and there’s plenty of sweet tea and humidity!
Why not try new things, make friends and get a whole new experience by working and staying someplace where I could benefit in new ways?
Colorado was a random yet beautiful choice that I made.
But there are things that throw me off by living here – especially since I come from an area that’s completely different (in the Georgia/Florida border). There are of course things that I love about Colorado yet there are things that are just … well… different.
Compared to home, it’s almost a whole other world out here.
One of the biggest things that throws me off is:
I can never get use to the weather.
One day it will be sunny skies with temperatures in the 60s or 70s and within 24 hours there could be a blizzard outside your window.
I talk to the native Coloradans and even they say that they’ve never gotten use to it and probably never will.
The weather is constantly changing.
I would also have to mention the WIND. It comes out of nowhere and blows everything in its path. Even though I’m use to heat and humidity, I actually really love cold weather and snow. It’s the wind I can’t stand! And as a result, I’m left with runny noses and tissues.
Another thing I find funny about living here (particularly in the mountains) are the bear trash cans.
Living in the Rockies, we are surrounded by a vast amount of wilderness and wildlife… this includes bears and whatnot. When I first came out here, I found the ‘bear-proof’ trash cans hilarious. I had never seen one before and thought it was funny. There’s a certain to unlock the trash in order to dispose of your garbage so that bears cannot have access to it. It’s something I never thought about or worry about back at home.
I’m definitely not in Georgia anymore.
The climate is another adjustment, especially compared to the South. It’s dryer up here and I have to take caution that my skin doesn’t dry out too much. Back home, I could wash my face 3x a day with no problem. Out here, I have to be very careful, otherwise my skin will crack.
I’m always keeping multiple chapsticks in my pockets, purse, etc. Lotion is also a good idea for staying moisturized.
I honestly miss the humidity sometimes…that warm sun… that warm breeze in the air… ahhhhhh….
Enjoying the day outside – it was about 70 degrees Fahrenheit 🙂
Also, as time has gone by, I have adjusted to the elevation and I can even ride my bike with more ease without bursting a lung. Back home I’m right at sea-level (I live right on the coast) so getting use to the elevation was definitely a challenge I overcame. I remember the days when I’d get out of breath just by walking up the stairs here!
And of course, there are the people here.
They are nice but it’s a different kind of niceness compared to the South. I find people here to be very open-minded and friendly with an appreciation for nature and living a less fast-paced lifestyle. They are also very conscientious about the environment, staying very green and most cities have excellent transportation. It’s great to people riding their bicycle or using the bus to get around… reminds of Europe.
However, the drivers out here…. oh my goodness. I can’t get use to the way they drive. I must drive like a grandma compared to them. I understand big-city driving. I’ve seen it in Atlanta, Miami, Jacksonville and Tampa, just to name a few places. But it seems like Coloradans in general have little patience on the road and I hate being tailgated.
I remember this one instance where my friends and I were driving back home at night, going 10 miles above the speed limit, and somehow it still annoyed the driver behind us who not only tailgated us back the entire time, but kept his brights on, too! We were all clueless as to what this guy’s problem was for we were going the speed limit!
I must note, though, despite the aggression on the road, there are some kind souls who will often pull over at the side of the road and let you pass if they sense you are in more of a hurry than they are.
And let us not forget the landscape out here…. it’s so unbelievably gorgeous! I prefer the area in or near the Rocky Mountains, but even the flat terrain can also be beautiful. In the mountains, there is no comparison, though. The trees are evergreen and the mountains reach the heavens … if you love nature and being active, Colorado is truly a paradise. There are so many things to do here in the outdoors: hiking, kayaking, mountain biking, rock climbing, and rafting just to name a few.
Coming from the coast (and while island life is fun), I am able to appreciate another side of America. This country is big and it amazes me at how the West is different from the North which differs from the South. Landscape and people wise.
Okay, most important adjustment to living out here is the FOOD. While I’m staying here at the Y, I don’t get as many options on the buffet line as I do back at home. (And as a person who tries to stay health conscience, it can be a difficult task, too).
But how I miss the food from back South! All of it. Even the fried stuff. I get cravings nearly everyday for southern cooking. And I miss the sweet tea! I cannot believe people out here don’t know how to make sweet tea… Some don’t even know what I’m talking about. I mean, don’t get me wrong – there’s some good food out here, sure. Like steak. But the food in general just doesn’t beat fried chicken or dumplings, collard greens or bacon wrapped chicken and potato salad back at home.
I have to stop talking about food. I’m getting way too hungry now.
I’m sure there are a bazillion other things I could compare Colorado with versus the South or just ramble on about Colorado in general. But these are just some of the main highlights I wanted to address about living here. It really is a wonderful state and I can’t seem to get enough of it. I’m going to miss it so much when I leave this summer…