2 weeks, 4 states, 11 cities, and 3000+ miles later, I am back home in Pittsburgh with many wonderful memories. I thought I’d write a post about my experience in the Midwest and some things that are unique to the region.
1. people are much nicer
You’re not imagining it! People are actually nicer…waaay nicer over here! At first you will think it’s kind of weird and then you will get used to it. And then you won’t be able to live without it! All those smiles! I spent about half of my Midwest tour in Minnesota and learned the expression “Minnesota Nice”. That’s what they call it. The kind heartedness of everyone on my trip is what made the terrible shows ok and the good shows great!
2. people take care of you
Like really take care of you! This kind of goes along with the above point. I stayed in the homes of “friends of friends” on this particular trip. People who didn’t even know me went out of their way to make sure that i felt at home. Don’t get me wrong: Im always staying in people’s homes and they’re always nice. But there’s a difference between being nice and going “above and beyond”. And it seems like hospitality in the Midwest is truly a perfected art.
3. skinny jeans don’t exist
You can tell alot about people based on what they wear. While in the region I visited a few thrift stores to see what unique things I could find. I learned alot about how Midwesterners dress – after all thrift store clothes trickle down from department stores. So lemme just tell you: I could not find even 1 pair of skinny jeans anywhere! Ok, that’s a little bit of an exaggeration, especially because i bought the 1 pair i did find (hehe). But Midwesterners do not wear skinny jeans. They like their boot-cut bottoms and a pair of rugged boots to match. It didnt take long to make sense of it, really. I mean after all, hip-hugging, thigh-sucking stretchy material doesn’t exactly pair up too well with the resilient, farming culture of the Midwest. The funny thing is, I didn’t notice this on people until i went thrifting. Then i opened my eyes and noticed the people around me. They were all wearing their wool sweaters, heavy scarves, and heavy duty pants.
3. cold is not actually cold…its just “cool”
During my first week in Minnesota, it was cold. Like icy cold! Like -18 degrees cold. I was so confused about this because it was incredibly sunny. How could there be an extra layer of road (in the form of ice) while the sun was so bright and warm. I’ll never understand it. But I noticed that people in the Midwest have a very different definition of cold. And when it hits 30 degrees it’s practically spring *sarcasm* and you can find many of them loitering around without coats. One of my friends made a joke about this guy in his neighborhood who wears out shorts as soon as it hits 40 degrees. And to that I say… WHAT!
Anyhow, now that this trip is said and done, I am so eager to return to the Midwest. It was such an excellent 2 weeks and I almost wish it could have been longer.