I have really settled in at my new school. I pondered that today at lunch as one of the kindergarten teachers joked with me, and I found myself laughing with people I have only recently met. And then I remembered my first year in Florida, in which I experienced much the same friendliness from my new colleagues.
It occurred to me at some point several years ago that most of us “Floridians”, at least those living on the coast, are actually from somewhere else. I’ve made friends with people who hail from Indiana, New Jersey, Delaware, Iowa, Louisiana, and the list goes on. My own children were all born in Texas. I even have a friend who was born and raised in Buffalo, just up the road from my home town. These wonderful people all started out as the “newcomers” at some point, and even those good friends I’ve made who were born and raised in Florida are so used to people moving into their state, they barely bat an eye. They just ask you where you’re from and welcome you in.
People here don’t really look at anybody as an outsider. And that’s something I like about Florida – a lot.