Geographic Transplants

In addition to the book discussion, we had wonderful conversation — Phyllis and Art have lived here for eight years, and have made interesting friends. Only one is from the Carolinas; the rest, like Phyllis and Art, are transplants.

Connie and I are both transplants in our current homes as well, which moved me to think how we adapt to new surroundings and what we choose to retain. Phyllis is a master gardener, and she’s had to learn about the new plants and shrubs that thrive here, in this growing zone, which is different from Rochester or from Pennsylvania. We all enjoy and seek out the new foods, spices, and culinary habits of the places we now live. We dress appropriately to the climate. I left my boots, heavy coats, scarves, neck warmers, gloves when I moved from Rochester, knowing I wouldn’t need them in the more temperate Pacific northwest.

What do we not leave behind? Phyllis was raised Mennonite and Art Catholic; neither has become Baptist, like most of their neighbors who are from the South. Nor have any of us left behind our progressive political values and our Democratic votes. Since we tend to surround ourselves with people with whom we share deep values, most of us transplants have other transplants as friends — unless you live in Seattle, as I do, where everyone is progressive.

Glad to hear your thoughts on this. Are you a transplant, and what have you kept v. what have you left behind? Or, do you live where you grew up? Why have you stayed?

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