I really dig America.
But I haven’t really dug into America. You know? I’ve lived here for a while now, but that time has been spent living in the middle of a forest and so I haven’t exactly saturated myself in the marrow of the culture. (Eww.) No question: ignorance is always a missed opportunity. In my defense, I’ve been busy making a new life and falling in love and other distracting activities, so up to now I’ve given myself a pass.
That ends today.
It’s my intention to go on living in this country until the good Lord strikes me down where I stand. So it’s time I learned… um, where it is I stand, exactly. Time I learned a little something about this adopted country of mine.
I’m writing this on July 4th, 2018, sitting in my home on the California ranch where I live with my cute and unconventional family unit. In less than two weeks, the cute family and I will embark on a Really Big Adventure. We’re moving waaaaay across the country, to the eastern tip of Pennsylvania. So basically, from living 30 minutes from the literal sand-and-water West Coast to 60 minutes from the literal mafia-victim-bones-and-icy-sludge East Coast.
We’re a bunch of crazy kids, my people, and big moves is how we do.
Along with my resourceful, goodlooking wife, I’m going to drive the 3000-odd miles from California to Pennsylvania. Our goal is to do this in five days. Because we’re zany like that. Our travel companions will be Mister Bilbo Baggins of Bag End and Miss Claire Bear Fair-of-Hair. The rest of the unit will fly and meet us there. I can’t vouch for other people’s choices.
Me, I can’t wait to steer Sappho the trusty Subaru through the floor of the flyover states and get me a taste of America.
I should be able to at least glimpse it out the window, right?
At any rate, this blog is where I’m going to share my observations and ideas about my new country as I tune in. The hermit years are over. I’m coming to look for America.
I’ll use this blog to chart my unfurling discovery of the country and its people, and invite you to help me out where I’m still in the dark. I’m hoping that my American friends and my American strangers will leap in to share your experience of the country: culture, language, idiosyncrasies, weird and wonderful food, freaky antiquated traditions. Everything!
I’ll be writing about America’s sublime and America’s ridiculous as they appear through my naive little Aussie eyes.
That said, this is not a blog about politics. Two reasons: one, it would fill the sky and there would be nothing else to write about. I want to discuss unity and quirk and humanity wherever I encounter it, not get bogged down in divisiveness and despair. The second reason for no politics is that, as I mentioned, I want to stay here in the US forever — and that’s not yet in the bag, folks. So for those who know me as a political animal, read between the lines and continue to love me.
I want to publish this first blog post on the Fourth of July. But before I do so, I want to tell you how my self-education is going in my own home so far.
Me: Tell me about the first Fourth of July.
Wife: Well, it was just after Jesus died, I guess.
I would love it if you would come along with me on this literal and figurative journey. Please read and weigh in and contradict my suppositions. Please help me look for America. I know I left it in here somewhere.
Question: Americans, please answer in the comments. If there were one thing I absolutely needed to know to get by in the US, what would it be?