We have been in Houston for five weeks, and we’re coming up with more differences between Houston and Wellsboro, PA.
Homeless people – I suppose I knew there would be homeless people in Houston, but I didn’t expect to see so many, and all the time too. So far my only experience dealing with homeless people has been on vacations: visiting cities such as San Francisco, New York and Washington D.C. You see them for a few days, but then you go back home and you don’t think about them anymore. Now it is an every day thing. They are out at almost every major intersection, all holding up signs asking for money. Groups of homeless people hang out under every overpass bridge, staying out of the sun and heat.
Hurricane season – Last week, hurricane Hermine formed in the Gulf of Mexico. Eventually it turned east and it hit Florida, but for about a day or two, we watched the weather forecast more closely than usual! It is likely that a hurricane could hit Texas. Maybe not this season, but next year, or the next.
Diversity – Wellsboro (and Tioga County) is, to put it nicely, a very white town. Houston is the direct opposite, a melting pot. In our apartment complex, we have all kinds of people. White, African American, Asian, Spanish, Indian, etc. Out of Derek’s four classmates in the grad school art program, one is from South Korea, one is from Lebanon and one is from Iran. Wow!
Circulars – A huge pile of circulars comes in the mail every week. Back in Wellsboro, we would get the dollar saver every week, but that was more advertisements and classifieds than anything. The first week or two I was shoving the pile of coupons in the trash, but then I realized how valuable they were. Next time I go grocery shopping, I need to buy trash bags. I ended up finding a coupon for trash bags! How convenient. I also found a coupon for $5 off your bill at Olive Garden, which is right down the street from our house. Coupons may seem like old hat for lots of people, but it’s just something that I’ve never had to do personally until now. Also, you know you live in Texas when you get a “back to school” circular from the boot store!
News – I remember growing up and getting the news from Philadelphia, and there was always something bad going on. Then I moved to Tioga County, and the news was basically boring every day. Now that we’re in a city, it’s similar to Philadelphia. Shootings, robberies, etc. every day. Nothing really near our area, which is good, but it’s still scary. I’d rather take the boring news.
Fall – All of my friends back east (that is so weird to say and write!) are starting to enter fall mode. Everyone is talking about football games, pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkins, leaves, sweaters, etc. I can technically get most of this stuff too, but the fact of the matter is that it will probably be quite a while before I can wear a sweater, and I have no idea if the leaves even change here! Everyone is talking about the mornings being chilly on Facebook, and it’s still in the mid 90’s here. Time will tell.
In case you missed it: Link to differences part 1 – https://texastalesblog.wordpress.com/2016/08/25/differences-between-tx-and-pa/