Twice in the last two weeks I’ve discussed the word “Austinite”. How long do you have to live here before you are an Austinite? Should you ever be considered a native? Are natives better than imports? One life-long Austin resident told me she was proud to be from Austin and it made her feel cooler (maybe even a little better) than an import like myself. On the other hand two Austinites were arguing at a party over whether or not imports like myself should go ahead take on the name. One person took a welcoming stance and the other took the stance I agreed with and said you couldn’t just move here and call yourself Austinite.
Newsflash: Not all immigrants to Austin want to be Austinites. While it is the greatest city in Texas and one of the greatest cities in America, I am who I am because of my home state pride. The Old North State is my home and I will gladly claim myself as a North Carolinian for the rest of my life. I like pulled pork barbecue, sweet iced tea and shrimp and grits is a meal I could base my life around. Listening to “Wagon Wheel” by Old Crow Medicine Show makes me homesick and a little teary.
At the end of the day North Carolina doesn’t offer the lifestyle I want. I like the absence of winter, the emphasis on arts and music, the bustling city with the small town feel that Austin provides. It has almost everything I could desire… except for mountains, Moravian lovefeast buns and dogwood trees.. and probable a few other things.
This is how North Carolinians feel about their state.