I hope you all are doing well! Many of you on my reader survey (which ps you should take a hot second and take it here) responded that you would like to hear more about my personal experiences and Charlotte living on my blog. So, as requested I am sharing 7 things I have learned living in Charlotte over the past couple of years!
To give a little bit of a background information, I grew up in a VERY small town in Western North Carolina. My graduating class was a class of 94 students and the closest city to us was about a two hour drive away. It was one of those towns where everyone knew pretty much everyone. Although small town life does have it's perks, I was dying to get out. I headed out to Charlotte for college and hope to stay here after I graduate in May. Since moving out to Charlotte there are a few things I have learned along the way.
1. Downtown Charlotte is called UPTOWN
First things first, it's called Uptown. Get that right. I still really don't understand exactly why it's called Uptown... but people make sure you know it is not mistaken for downtown Charlotte. I also learned that one can never have too many photos of Uptown. I'm pretty sure I take a new one every time I visit.
2. No one is really from Charlotte
I swear, almost everyone I meet is either here for school, work or some other personal reason. No one is really a Charlotte native! I mean, if you are a Charlotte native, then you are a unicorn in the Queen City.
3. Learn how to drive on the freeway... ASAP
Like I said, I grew up in a very small town and most of our roads consisted of two lane backroads. The only traffic our town ever experienced was on 4th of July when everyone is trying to leave the park. So, with this in mind image my major culture shock when I started driving in Charlotte... at 5pm... on a Monday.
I dreaded driving in Charlotte for the longest time and if I had to go anywhere that would require me to drive on the freeway I would either get RJ to drive me or Uber... and this went on for about a year an a half. I know, I'm ridiculous. It wasn't until I got my internship where I was forced to drive on the freeway twice a week till I got over my fear. Yes, I still dread traffic and the thought of merging still terrifies me, but hey, baby steps right?
It should also be noted that Charlotte drivers might be on the of scariest and worst drivers I have personally encountered in my life. I grew up visiting Atlanta every week and I still think Charlotte by far is the worst.
4. Bar Crawls are a big thing here
I feel like there's a different Bar Crawl going on every other weekend here! There was a Santa Bar crawl, Banana Bar Crawl and now there's a big St. Patrick Day Bar Crawl coming up in a couple weeks. Hey, I get it. The Queen City loves there bars and socializing with friends. I have yet to participate in a bar crawl, but I want to soon so I can see what the hype is about!
5. The sky's the limit
It wasn't until I started living in the city that I realized the sky really is the limit on what I want to do with my life. I'm not sure if it has anything to do with growing up in a small town with limited possibilities or now being exposed to so many possibilities in such a big city...or a combination of both.
I'm starting to realize that I can do what I ever I put my mind to. There are SO many opportunities in Charlotte and there are so many different directions I can take my life. There are so many talented and motivated people here in Charlotte that it's so inspiring to try to find my place in this world.
6. Basketball is a big thing here
We all know North Carolina is home to one of the biggest college basketball rivalries, UNC and DUKE, but throw in The Charlotte Hornets and UNC Charlotte's basketball team you're in on a basketball overload. Personally I'm more of a football gal and basketball never really interest me. The only time I care about basketball is when UNC Chapel Hill wins so I can get free coffee at Dunkin Donuts.. so there's that.
7. You appreciate your hometown 10x more after you leave
You know the saying "you always miss what you don't have?"
Growing up in my hometown I couldn't wait to move out. I hated how small my town was, how there was nothing to do here and of course, the limited food choices. Since living in the Charlotte, I've learned to appreciate my hometown so much more. I love how I never have to deal with traffic here, I mean I can run to the grocery store at 5:30pm and not have to carve out 30 minutes for driving time. I love how quite it is here and the natural beauty of the mountains (I mean, hello beautiful fall scenery). Leaving something really makes you appreciate it when it's gone!
Whew. That's it! There's so much I could go on about my experience here in Charlotte. I clearly LOVE it here and all that the city has to offer. If you live in Charlotte, what's something you learned since living here? I hope you all have a wonderful week and as always, thank you for reading!