5 Lessons I've Learned From The South
Living in North Carolina, I consider myself a true Southerner. There are so many things I would say I learned simply from living in the South. Here are 5 life lessons I've learned from living in the South.
Mind Your Manners!
This is huge. You say "Yes ma'am" and "Yes sir". Always. I've heard it can be considered offensive if you say it in other places, but here in the South, it's offensive if you don't say it to your elders. "Please" and "Thank You" truly are magic words in the South. Goodness, those words right there could determine whether you got what you wanted or not. You always address someone older than you with proper respect. "Mr." and "Ms." are always used, unless they're close relatives. Minding your manners will get you very, very far in the South.
Writing letters is, unfortunately, becoming a lost art. However, down here, you are still expected to write thank you notes. Say Aunt Margaret gave you a lovely ceramic mug. Saying the words, "Thank you very much" doesn't cut it. No sirree. You must, as soon as possible, write a sincere and heartfelt thank you note. Preferably the same day you receive the gift. Okay, so all the "rules" to thank you letters are different depending on where you live in the South, but hey, doesn't it feel nice to receive something in the mail with your name on it that's not junk mail?
This is one of my favorite things about the South. Hospitality is never lacking. As an extrovert myself, this is a wonderful thing. Never ending dinner at friends', having relatives spend the weekend at your house; it all sounds wonderful. We do not have any problem inviting you into our homes. Well, if it's clean of course.
Another thing that is never lacking is food. Every holiday, family get-together, church gathering, and all in between, there is always food. Seriously. I have never gone to anyone's house for a get-together without food. Food is not just sustenance, it is a lifestyle. Recently, I have started creating a cookbook for myself, including recipes from my mama and my nana (my mom's mom). It's already bulging, and I haven't even started on the desserts yet. I think I have three different recipes for chicken casserole, because one is just not enough. Don't even get me started on food at church... I think there is always food on hand. Hey, I am a Baptist.
A Good Cup of Coffee Goes Great with Jesus
I know, this isn't just a Southern thing. However, we are passionate about our Savior down here. The best devotionals I've had are early in the morning, outside on the porch, with my Bible, notebook, and a good cup of coffee. Obviously, not everyone is a Christian in the South. But goodness, you can't go two miles down the road without seeing a church. As I look at the beautiful sunrises, I often wonder how anyone could doubt the existence of an Almighty Creator.