Wednesday, December 10

Culture Shock 66

Tonight, I was reminded of when I first came to Mississippi 17 months ago.

My husband had taken us on a twilight walk of our property. It was July. It was a gorgeous night. It was peaceful and beautiful.

Tonight, in December, it was cold. It was pitch black out. The now 2 year old was screaming for chocolate.

What was the same? What triggered my memory of such a sweet family time? What could possibly make the two nights comparable?

Bobcat. One word. One cat. Something wild. Something unknown. Bobcat.

That night in July of 2013 had ended with a growl, a rush to the house, an internet search and a confirmation that we had walked very close to a bobcat and her den.

This December night is being spent in worry as we spotted a bobcat stalking our chickens the night before.  The dogs are sleeping inside because of the cold, but I was petrified to retrieve them from their kennel this evening because of a bobcat. The dogs run is a good 100 feet from the house with no lights to guide the way.

I know bobcats don't attack people. I looked it up!  It's just the fear of the dark and the unknown, of the wild and the cold.

The most wild animal I ever had in my backyard in California was a turkey.

Thursday, November 6

Culture Shock 65

So, last night my husband and I went outside after the boys were asleep. We had heard a thud on the roof and a scampering around. There are squirrels about and they can get to chattering and jumping, but this was a colossal thud.

We have chickens and we've seen a bobcat and a feral cat hanging around the property so we were on alert. My hubby grabbed his gun. I grabbed the flashlight. Shining the light up on the roof reveled a possum running to the nearest tree that hung over the chicken coop.

My hubby's aim was true. The kids did not wake up. And we had possum soup for dinner! No. We didn't eat possum. But I can't believe I went outside in the pitch black of night with only a flashlight and a gun.

I have changed a lot this year.
Maybe that's the biggest shock of all.

Tuesday, November 4

Culture Shock 64

This shock is for everyone else!

I bought a pink and camo hat. I like it and I wear it.

That's it for now though. No more camo for this California girl!
(I can sense my husband's smirk from here!)

Culture Shock 63


I have to start this post with a definition.

SOCCER MOM: a female driver who is driving a team to a soccer game; a female who is driving a vehicle that is too big and beyond her experience to handle while she is distracted by the multiple children in the back seats and possibly on her cell phone.

This 2nd definition of Soccer Mom does not exist here in Mississippi. I might be the only female around who has never driven a tractor, but I used to drive a large van and trailer for small groups so I know how to handle larger vehicles.

It just hit me the other day as I was looking around at who was driving into the parking lot at my son's soccer game; mostly women drivers and all of them knew how to handle their big vehicles.

Something I don't miss from home: Soccer Moms!

Sunday, November 2

Culture Shock 62

Um, what? I'm speechless. I'm dumbfounded. I'm utterly shocked!

"Closed," the sign says. "Closed on Sunday."

I am not accustomed to the doors not opening when I need something from the store.

Call me spoiled. Call me bratty. Call me an out-of-towner.

I'll adjust. I just didn't plan on running out of diapers and milk and then not being able to get more 'til Monday!

I recently saw a post on facebook that our local yogurt shop is closing on Sundays as well. It is their busiest day but they are choosing to honor the Sabbath as a day of rest to give employees the opportunity to attend church.

Culture Shock 61

Mississipians, are we officially in the bible belt of the United States?

I grew up knowing all the churches in town. There were quite a few but we were a small town with a population of 100,000.

On the way to our church here in Summit, we used to pass no fewer than 3 churches. If I went the other way, I would pass 4 different ones.

On the way out to our new place in Liberty, we pass 3 different churches as well.

Almost a church on every corner! Didn't believe it until I saw it!

Culture Shock 60

On the freeway - I mean, highway! - I was going 65 mph, driving in the right hand lane. As I'm minding my own business, a semi truck passes me going 70 mph.

Wow!  I haven't driven much on the highways here. In California, semi trucks can't go over 55. I was shocked that a big rig would pass me! At home, if one passed you on the left, you should've probably gotten off the freeway awhile ago!

Wednesday, October 29

Culture Shock 59

Tractors.

We used to oo and ah over every tractor we saw. We would sometimes stop and watch them work. We would talk about the color and the big tires and the job it was made for.

My husband and son took a trip to Texas and decided to count the tractors on the way back. My son lost count after 200. He saw more than 200 tractors in one day!

Not such a novelty to see tractors in our way causing "traffic" anymore. We don't point them out to each other or stop to check them out.

I saw a big one a few days ago. As we passed, I realized that we don't much bother with them at all. They are part of the landscape now. Broke my heart a little to realize this, partly because my little guy isn't so little anymore and partly because it made me homesick.