Here are some more things I’ve noticed about this hot, dusty land mass.
1. Taco places all serve breakfast. When Taco Johns started serving breakfast, most people agreed it was weirdly gross. I still feel the same.
2. They have distinct beverages. Fanta Red must be the southern version of Fruit Punch or Hi-C and whatnot. It’s always there. Their fountain machines also seem to always include Diet Dr. Pepper, which is a godsend. In Iowa, I could only find it at Chick-Fil-A (and Kum & Go, of course). Sadly, I’m having to use that Diet D.P. to replace my true love, Diet Mountain Dew. I can’t find it anywhere! Also, at most places, a medium drink is 32 ounces. And they put their pop in styrofoam. It’s hot as sin down here, so it really keeps that liquid cool, while killing the environment one Big-Gulp-sized take-out cup at a time.
3. Informative signs can be found all over the place. “Watch for water” along the frontage roads. “Bridges ice before roads” before every bridge. I mean, isn’t this common sense? My favorites, however, are the ones that say it’s a misdemeanor to consume alcohol on site–most notably the grocery stores and Target.
4. Magazines are terrifying. Walking down the magazine aisle at Target my first night in Lubbock, I found the May issue of Esquire. The. May. Issue. Does that not disturb you? Even more upsetting was that a week later, I found no issues at all. Checkouts–hot spots for the mag buyer–have such titles as Cowboys & Indians, Country Weekly, Texas Football, and ‘Taste of Home’s’ Church Suppers. I yi yi. Where’s GQ or Real Simple? But I’m proud to report I found Parents and Kitchen and Bath Ideas.
5. Texans really do say y’all all the time. Especially at restaurants. One server topped out with six y’alls in her introduction. Oh boy.
6. Stores have some very different quotidian products. For instance, I’ve never seen so many different kinds of Jarritos. They took up a fourth of an aisle at the HUGE grocery store I frequent. Right next to those were an assortment of religious candles. Those had half an aisle at Target!