Well Ang’s Chik Fil A blog made me homesick for the South, and I started thinking about all the things that gave me culture whiplash when I moved to New England. One of those things (as I noted at Ang’s) was the different way that alcohol was treated (and taxed and taxed and taxed some more up here). Now, where I was from in the Florida panhandle, you could buy beer and wine almost anywhere: at the 7-11, at the gas station, and at grocery stores. Heck, back in the ’80’s they had these things called “cruise throughs” or “brew thrus” that you could actually drive up and get some beer without leaving your car, including (I’m not kidding) beer in a “go cup.” Now, I certainly don’t advocate that or think it’s good or safe, but I’m just showing the vast and huge difference in attitudes between this part of New England and that part of the South. Up here, however, you can get beer and wine only at liquor stores.
Another thing that surprised me in comparing just south of the Bible belt to the puritanical New Englanders was the proliference of statues of the Virgin Mary:
These are all over the place up here; whereas, you’re far more likely to see a pink flamingo lawn ornament in Florida. This may be due to the high concentration of Catholics up here, but still, it was different to me.
Another thing I’d never heard of were things called “three families” (or four or five families); these, it turns out, are buildings that may or may not at one time have been single families (just like it sounds), but have been turned into multiple apartments. Here’s a three family:
These may or may not be owner occupied. Um, that’s all I really know about them, but isn’t it interesting? (okay, Wendy’s probably busting a gut about now because she’s from here and this is all normal to her! Teehee)
Another thing I noticed is that they are either big into conservation or lazy as all get out here because instead of cutting branches off to avoid power lines, they sort of carve out a power line niche:
Sorry that pic’s at an angle, it’s the best one I got of the power line + creative tree cutting and it was all off kilter (imagine what the others looked like if this was the best one!).
And then of course there is just the beautiful architecture up here. I love this princess turret house:
And this little wall thing (sorry about the window glare):
And I love the pretty pretty yards:
And I even found some azaleas yesterday (these remind me of the South because they are everywhere down there, yay!):
And of course some things are just the same wherever you go:
Or is it just my imagination that everywhere in America, drugstores all look exactly the same? I mean it might be a Walgreens or an Eckerds, but it’s the same old store, right?
The first pic is of the lavender house that I first blogged in the winter and promised Rainy that I’d redo in spring. Unfortunately, apart from the lovely lavenderness of their house, they didn’t do anything else . . . no pretty flowers. Sigh. While I’m on the subject of Rainy, if you get a chance, you might want to see her Sights and Sounds blog post. It’s truly unique and a real experience of her park area; I just loved it.