I am a New Yorker who lived in South Carolina for 2 years.Sam White; Shutterstock

  • I moved from upstate New York to South Carolina in 2020. Two years later, I am returning residence.

  • The humidity, huge bugs, and strict marijuana legal guidelines in South Carolina weren’t splendid for me.

  • Though the South is gorgeous and has a robust tradition, there’s nothing fairly like New York.

I am a born-and-raised New Yorker who’s spent most of my life upstate. However at first of the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, I moved to South Carolina to hunker down with my instant household for what I believed can be a comparatively brief time period.

I ended up dwelling there for 2 years, and I simply do not assume the South is for me.

Earlier than I moved to South Carolina, the farthest south I would ever lived was Las Vegas. That was just for two years after highschool, although, so this has been an enormous adjustment.

Now that I am departing South Carolina and returning to upstate New York, I made a decision to interrupt down a number of of the most important causes I selected to depart.

I discover the extreme warmth and humidity to be insufferable

I am going to most likely get roasted for being a Northerner complaining concerning the warmth, however it’s sizzling down right here. And never in a enjoyable, tropical method.

No, this Southern warmth feels as should you’re experiencing the consequences of local weather change occurring in actual time. Sadly, I’ve a hunch that it is solely going to worsen — and shortly.

Huntington Beach State Park, South Carolina, USA.Scenic view from the wooden boardwalk on the expansive salt marsh during sunny morning.

Huntington Seashore State Park in South Carolina.Shutterstock

My second summer season in South Carolina felt simply twice as sizzling as the primary, which made it virtually insufferable to depart the home between Might and October.

And once I say insufferable, I imply it. The air is so humid that it feels as if somebody has thrown a moist towel over my face as quickly as I step outdoors.

My hair does not keep styled, and my make-up does not keep put. I miss the idea of trying good in the summertime as an alternative of being a disgusting, sweaty swamp goblin.

I can not stand the warmth, so I am getting out of the proverbial kitchen.

The bugs in South Carolina are out of my weight class

I can deal with the alligators, snakes, birds, bats, lizards, turtles, and frogs within the South. I even get pleasure from a few of them.

However I can’t stand the bugs.

I’ve by no means been attacked by bugs the way in which I have been attacked by the large abominations I’ve seen in South Carolina. These bugs are enormous. These bugs may take me down in a bodily combat.

Golden Orb Spider in South Carolina's Congaree National Park

Golden Orb Spider in South Carolina’s Congaree Nationwide Park

A banana spider in South Carolina’s Congaree Nationwide Park.ShutterStock

In South Carolina, I’ve encountered banana spiders, mole crickets, palmetto bugs, millipedes, and centipedes, simply to call a number of.

These creepy, alien-looking creatures love to do issues like dive-bomb my face once I’m outdoors making an attempt to thoughts my very own enterprise.

As somebody who’s lived in each New York and South Carolina, I would take a combat with a subway rat over these bugs any day.

Going from a blue state to a pink state has been tough

I grew up in a various, progressive metropolis in New York, a state that usually votes Democratic in elections.

So, shifting to a state ruled by principally Republican officers, lots of whom have political opinions and morals that I vehemently disagree with, has been a little bit of a tradition shock.

Although a jarring quantity of racism and white supremacy is disguised as “Southern Pleasure,” I’ve realized there are additionally enormous swaths of the area which might be fantastically numerous and desperately underrepresented.

And as I’ve spent extra time in South Carolina, I’ve realized that its predominantly conservative elected officers aren’t essentially consultant of all of the individuals who dwell right here.

I need to have the ability to purchase weed, which continues to be unlawful in lots of Southern states

hand holding a blunt

New York legalized weed for leisure use in 2021.Peter Dazeley

It sucks to be a stoner in a state the place hashish is unlawful.

New York lastly legalized marijuana for leisure use in 2021 after taking its candy time. Sadly, many Southern states nonetheless lack equally progressive hashish legal guidelines.

I would not even thoughts driving to a neighboring state to purchase weed, however that wasn’t an possibility. Marijuana is usually unlawful in all three of them: North Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia.

The legal guidelines in opposition to shopping for, promoting, and possessing marijuana in sure Southern states are harsh. I discover them to be morally regressive and unjust, as they disproportionately have an effect on individuals of colour. And I do not need to dwell in a state that enforces them.

In South Carolina, I can nonetheless legally purchase delta-8 THC, a hashish compound that offers me a “excessive” however falls inside a authorized loophole within the US.

It is an excellent begin, however I would nonetheless like to see hashish legalized for medical and leisure use all through the South.

I miss gaining access to totally different vegan meals

gluten free vegan sandwiches with beet hummus, raw vegetables and sprouts. soft focus

gluten free vegan sandwiches with beet hummus, uncooked greens and sprouts. gentle focus

The vegan meals I cherished in New York was onerous to search out the place I lived in South Carolina.Shutterstock

It is necessary to preface my level by saying that entry to vegan meals relies on the place an individual lives within the South.

I do not need to paint your complete area as an enormous vegan-food desert, as a result of there may be lots of superb Southern vegan meals that deserves recognition. However if you’d like entry to that vegan meals, you normally should be in an enormous metropolis like Atlanta, which has superb vegan choices like The Slutty Vegan and Plant-Based mostly Pizzeria.

In case you’re a vegan who strikes to a small Southern city, as I did, you are most likely out of luck.

My household’s residence wasn’t practically as rural because it will get down right here, however there weren’t many vegan choices close by.

I cooked all of my meals from residence, which is okay, however I did miss the luxurious of having the ability to order a vegan breakfast sandwich supply on a hungover Saturday morning.

When it comes all the way down to it, there’s actually no place like New York

Adirondack Mountains in upstate new york, rock overlooking the fall trees

Adirondack Mountains in upstate the big apple, rock overlooking the autumn timber

Climbing via the Adirondack Mountains is a spotlight of upstate autumns.Shutterstock

Upstate New York is without doubt one of the most topographically, ecologically, and anthropologically numerous locations on the planet.

Folks complain concerning the space’s harsh winters, however they seem to be a small value to pay for the breathtaking autumns.

The Adirondacks burst with vibrant washes of pink, orange, yellow, and purple. The odor of the autumn air in New York is the closest factor to actual magic I’ve ever felt, which sounds dramatic, but when you recognize, you recognize.

The South is gorgeous, too; I will not faux that it isn’t.

south carolina sunset

The summers in South Carolina can get sizzling.Shutterstock

The wonder right here has been what’s stored me sane over the previous two years. However I’m able to go residence.

I can not wait to throw on a pair of trainers and a sweater, placed on my headphones, and go for a stroll with out having to do this well mannered Southern wave that everybody appears to insist on doing down right here.

I do know it is a well mannered, Southern-hospitality factor, and I’ll all the time do it as a result of I’ve an awesome worry of being impolite to individuals that can all the time take precedent over my overwhelming must be left alone. However I actually hate it. Quite a bit.

I simply need to stroll in peace, and I can all the time rely on my fellow New Yorkers to thoughts their very own enterprise.

South Carolina, it has been actual — however it’s time for me to go residence.

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