You obviously don’t need to know all 50 states – relax – but please know more than two.
It’s like when tourists come to Europe and they only know countries like France and Germany – doesn’t that just ride on your nerves? Or when they have the nerve to say that Poland is part of Eastern Europe – makes you wanna scream, right? Now you understand how I feel about people’s lack of knowledge about the United States.
I don’t expect everyone to be able to name all fifty states and territories, that would be disappointing, but every now and then it’s refreshing to meet someone who knows about a part of the country that wouldn’t normally be a tourist destination. Maybe they studied abroad in a small town or they have relatives that settled in the middle of nowhere during the first migration. For whatever reason, my heart smiles a little when I meet people like this. They got to experience the real United States.
So here are some states you maybe never heard of, but are wonderful places to visit if you want to behold the true parts of America:
I promise you will never have seafood in Poland again, after dining in Maine. I might be exaggerating a little, but fish and crab and lobster from the Atlantic ocean has a different taste, and the fishing culture in Maine brings with it hundreds of ways to prepare all the fruits of the sea. If for no other reason, know Maine as one of the best seafood places on the East coast.
Now let’s take a trip to the south! If you like meat and Potatoes (what Polish person doesn’t?) then I recommend Oklahoma. Heavy food, grassy flatlands, free roaming cattle, fresh air, Native American heritage – this is part of the real America that people from abroad don’t normally see. This state is right above Texas, so you can still buy a cowboy hat and boots if you want.
I always wondered why Americans travel seven hours to France when they can just visit Louisiana. The state was a part of a major purchase from the French in the 1800’s and there’s still so much French heritage woven into the culture. The food is heaven, the language is a mystery in New Orleans, and the people are kind. Skip out on the Paris Syndrome and head over to LOO-ZANA.
So now you know more than two states! And it only took you a few minutes. While you’re on the topic, find out more about the places you don’t hear a lot about. You might just find a new destination for your next trip.
For your learning:
1. What do you think “my heart smiles” means? ___________________________
2. Name 5 fruits of the sea. _________________________________
3. “Head over” is a phrasal verb. What does it mean?
4. “Ride on your nerves” is an idiom, a form of hyperbole. What do you think it
5. “Middle of nowhere” is an idiom. What do you think it means? ____________