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Thursday, October 04, 2007

Welcome to Small Town USA

I'm dog sitting/house sitting for another six days for a woman I barely know. I met her while taking care of a friend's dog in her neighborhood. Upon moving to Tallahassee, I figured out pretty quickly to be somebody in this town, it's all about who you know and what your background is. It's not like Sarasota where newcomers are embraced into the community and can easily become a big fish in a small town. I've learned tradition and heritage are important to Tallahassee residents. Outsiders are looked upon as a curiosity. Who a person is seems to be dependent on where they went to high school and who their parent's are rather than the individual.

I've had my thoughts on this reaffirmed over the past couple of weeks. Had a discussion with a gal who was born and raised her but her parents moved here in the 1970s. People constantly ask where she went to high school and are disappointed when she doesn't reply with Leon. (Apparently the Leon kids are the wealthier ones? I'm still learning all this). Back to house sitting...

Came home on Tuesday to find a note posted to the door, one of the neighbors asked that I please give her a call but not to call after 8:30 p.m. No number was on the note but the client had left a list of neighbor's numbers. My plan was to take the dog out then head to class but thought this note meant there was an urgent matter needing tending to. While rounding up the dog, I called the neighbor. She informed me she and her daughter were on their way over to meet me and bring some soup over for my client, which is sweet and hospitable.

She seemed disappointed when I told her I was heading out the door and wasn't sure when I'd be able to have some free time to sit down with her. I'm a cut-to-the-chase person and not the chitchatting-type with strangers, which is why I'm an oddball here in the South. I'm guessing the neighbor's curious what type of person I am (all she knows me as is the "house sitter") and wants to make sure I haven't trashed the house (the client's in the process of moving so there isn't much in the house; has a great wood floor, could be a great roller rink or dance floor!) I'm tickled at her curiosity.

Tonight it's Wine Tasting and Cigar Smoking at ABC Fine Wine & Spirits at 1930 Thomasville Road. Tomorrow I have GOT to get to the gym (haven't been since Saturday). Saturday night is Club 3 at Lake Ella, a one-night nightclub for only 7 bucks. Sunday it's out to Wakulla Springs State Park for a field trip (I'm like a kid taking these eco-tourism classes). Last Sunday was a trip to the Wilderness Way for the kayak sale. Didn't find one in my price range but signed up for the sunset paddle on Oct. 21. Lunch and wandering in Apalachicola followed for the rest of the afternoon. It was nice, just wish more businesses would be open on a Sunday afternoon, after all, isn't that when most people have the time off?

Oh! And only a couple of days are left to join the Tallahassee Kite Runner Group - remember, if 100 members join, Tallahassee will get a free, private screening of the Kite Runner.

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