I’m currently sitting in Cafe Carolina a mere 2 minute drive from my apartment to use their internet, as I don’t get internet at my place until tomorrow. Around me are southern accents of a group of women discussing life issues or something (I overheard a few seconds of “it really changed me” as I tried to find a table with an outlet) and a family with small children talking about sweet tea.
As I want to take more time and be in the comfort of my own home before writing out my moving saga, I figured I’d start you all off with a few things I’ve learned about my new home.
-I have noticed a few things already. I was warned about this by Dan from my church. People are a lot slower here. I notice this in terms of communication. Back in Des Plaines I send emails to my employers and if I don’t get a response within a few hours they are either on vacation or their devices are broken. Here everyone takes their sweet southern time to get back to you. I really wouldn’t mind if it wasn’t for the fact I’m trying to get my jobs rolling. I sort of need to get an income flowing to my bank account..
-The second thing I’ve noticed is NC drivers are insane. no regard for those around them, flying around corners at any speed they please, etc. Perhaps I only notice this because I’m a born and raised Chicagoland driver, but really people…slow down and pay attention. My father commented on how he’s never seen so many random fender benders pulled over on the side of the road. I’m not surprised..
-After spending time waking around town (and having breakfast at an amazing waffle place) with Erik, my parents, and the future in-laws (the meeting of the parents went great, by the way, and I am very thankful for that) I also learned of the almost cultish feel of an actual University town. Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, walks around in Tar Heels blue up and down Franklin St. I noted that being gear-less was a problem when this little old man walking down the street was even wearing a Tar Heels baseball cap. Something had to be done(it required shopping, so of course something had to be done). Becky (Erik’s mom) took us to the most popular Tar Heels gear store in town, the Shrunken Head, where Erik and I both solved the issue of not fitting in with the crowd. Thanks to his parents for buying me an adorable Tar Heels hoodie and to my mom for the comfy sweatpants and windbreaker jacket emblazoned with the UNC logo. Throwing in the cute shirt I bought for myself I can now rest peacefully knowing I can fit in to the big university way of life, wearing Tar Heels blue proudly as Erik and I live in Chapel Hill for the next two years.
-Bugs… lots of bugs. Erik has killed several for me already, although my dad had the honor of taking out our first spider. The scenery with all of the trees in our complex is amazing, but with all of the trees comes bugs. *sigh*
-You can listen to the frogs at night. 🙂
– My new grocery store (Harris Teeter) has double coupons: EVERY DAY! I have never experienced the joy of double coupons. I can’t wait to plan ahead and play “how much can I actually save?” No, I will NOT become an extreme couponer, but I will put forth my best effort to save when I can.
-Thanks to UNC MBA social event and the MBA partners program (a club exclusively for the spouses/significant others of MBA students) meeting new people and making friends won’t be a problem. We’ve been out to two socials already, one of which was at the pool located right by my apartment building. Last night we also ended up with our first house guests: a couple who we were swapping engagement stories with and decided to take the conversation inside before the bugs attacked. Not bad for only being moved in a few days.
I’m sure there’s more, but that’s what I can think of off of the top of my head. As I said, the moving story will come soon, complete with pictures. I’m excited to be on this adventure. I’m not sure that it has sunk in that Erik and I won’t be separating anymore. Ill give it another week or two before that hits us, but I will say this: even though it hasn’t hit us yet, I’m getting a huge amount of comfort knowing that fact. We don’t feel pressured to fit in all of this time together or various activities like we usually do on our visits. We have all the time in the world. It is a wonderful thing. 🙂