#MyTravelStory: +Rosie Nixon embarks from the United Kingdom and shares her experience in the American South
#mytravelstory As a child I'd always wanted to visit America. I grew up around TV series such as The Waltons and Little House on the Prairie. While reading material was from the likes of the adventures of Tom Sawyer. Inevitably I'd etched certain scenes in my mind of what rural America might just be like.

Well fast forward many, MANY years and I found myself in the quintessential South. My very first visit to America.

There were homes in plantation and low country styles in all sizes. Some made from wood and painted in various shades while others were of brick and stone. Windows with decorative shutters, porches with patriotic flags, white picket fences and rocking chairs on the veranda. While gardens seemed to stretch into the surrounding landscape without anything really marking their boundaries. Oh the southern character just oozed from these homes. I loved it.

Yes this was 'the rural america' I'd always imagined. Only I didn't expect the landscape to be so green and lush.

Fireflies illuminated the trees and flickered across the blades of grass in the evenings. While the noise at night time at Lake Greenwood was deafening with the sound of crickets, bull frogs, tree frogs and dear knows what else ...a wildlife symphony extraordinaire!

Driving on the right hand side of the road was an experience even when sitting in the passenger seat especially coming to left turns. In the UK we have to stop at a red light even if there's no one at the junction ... you don't in South Carolina! Never mind losing count as we past church after church after church ...we were after all in bible belt land! And it sure was blowin' up a storm as we experienced Tropical Storm Cindy too. Now I understand why American roads have such large drains! We don't get rain like that!

Sometimes living in Scotland the only difference between summer and winter is that we cut the grass in summer! So getting accustomed to the heat and humidity was something else... I never got accustomed to it and neither did my hair. An air conditioning unit became my essential friend and when I thought it was too warm indoors ... I went outside to remind myself of how cool it actually was indoors. You don't wind down car windows to let some cool air in unlike here in Scotland!

Food especially for breakfast ... everything was flavoured. I just wanted good ole plain porridge oats for my mine but to no avail. Biscuits and gravy was also a taste experience though not very good for my arteries! Tennessee whiskey sure clears the airways and root beer didn't taste like what I'd expected it to taste like. I never took up the opportunity of drinking sweet tea. But the mustard BBQ sauce and pulled pork ... utterly delicious ...the more mustard the better! Grits ... hmmm not so sure about those!

The Southern hospitality was superb. We were made so welcome no matter where we went. Our accents could be picked out while eating out and it wasn't unusual for a total stranger from a nearby table to enter into one of our conversations. It was as if they'd known us all our lives.

I didn't bring my DSLR to America ... I couldn't risk a change in homeland policy and end up having to place it in the hold going home again. In a way I'm glad that I saw my first visit with my own eyes rather than from a camera viewfinder...though took some snaps on my phone. But truth be told ...every time I passed that huge Fujifilm Headquarters a little part of me just wished I'd taken it with me!

Well I declare next time it's coming with me! <eek> and yes sir and ma'am even while still jet lagged we were already making plans for the next trip. Next time it's via Dublin rather than Heathrow!

Photo taken of a lovely home in Due West, Abbeyville County on Sunday 25th June 2017. Probably the quietest little town I've ever been in...hardly saw a soul!

Oh if you've never seen fireflies then this is a great video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k72jGJTC_3o
#MyTravelStory as part of the Create Community initiative.
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