Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Why I live in Texas

I have a friend who just moved from California to Texas. His bike was damaged in transit, and he took it to be repaired, expecting it to take two weeks and cost him about $300. It took half an hour and cost him $15.15. He loves living in Texas because of all the friendly people and, yes, good restaurants--though he was a connoisseur in San Francisco. Teddy got me to thinking.
I'd heard the one of the things readers would like to know about authors was where we lived and why? So I planned to do this blog beginning with sort of an apology. Texas is not an easy place to live--it's unbearably hot in the summer, unpredictably cold and icy in winter; it's one of the most red states (read ultra right wing) which is not easy for me; we now have folks carrying their guns into Target, restaurants and, I suppose, churches if they had a mind to; our governor thinks Juarez (Mexico) is the most dangerous city in Texas and apparently sincerely believes that the influx of children from Central America is part of a plot by President Obama; others of our resident think it's all a plot by the "bronze master race" to take over. No question about it, folks, we have a border crisis, but I discount those causes.
So why do I live in this state? As a kid in Chicago, I thought it was a foreign country, and I couldn't have been more surprised to end up here when my then-husband got a surgical residency. I went to TCU and earned a graduate degree in English. And I've ended up writing most of my professional life about Texas and it's tumultuous, glorious, amazing history. Even if I'm not a native (I hear that all the time), I've lived here nearly fifty years and Texas is in my blood. Even today, I write about contemporary Texas--because it's the land and the people I know.
My family and friends--my support system, if you will--are all here. I thought seriously once about moving to Santa Fe but I didn't want to leave what I have here. I love my city (friendly, lots of cultural and culinary opportunities), my house, my dog, my routine.
Texas in the spring and fall is usually a glorious place to be. Yes, we have droughts and storms and occasional tornadoes, but we have balmy temperatures, beautiful wildflowers and gorgeous days and nights.
And Teddy is right--Texas is a friendly state. Most people are kind and pleasant and will go out of their way to help you. I don't want to live anywhere else--not even Santa Fe.

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