5 pieces of advice for Texas transplants
Every state is home to its own unique way of life, but few boast cultures as robust and distinct as that of Texas. The Lone Star state shares its borders with an array of U.S. territories, including New Mexico, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Arkansas, as well as the nation of Mexico, and is home to an increasingly diverse and vibrant population. Texas is America's second largest state, and contains many of the country's biggest metropolitan areas. That's right - everything really is bigger in Texas.
While born-and-bred Texans will tell you there's no place they'd rather live, transplants may find the transition a bit challenging. If you're looking to relocate to the great state of Texas, here are five must-read pieces of advice.
1. Your car will be your best friend
Texas' sprawling metropolises offer culture, excitement and top quality urban living opportunities, but - like everything else in the state - they're extremely large. In fact, the state has three cities - Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth and San Antonio - that are among the top 10 largest metropolitan statistical areas in the nation. Some cities, like Houston, offer residents solid public transportation options, including shuttles, busses and a light rail system. However, the sheer magnitude of Texas' hubs means that it's almost impossible to rely on public transport, walking or biking as your central means of getting around. Before relocating to Texas, make sure you have a dependable car that can bring you to and from all the amazing sights your new state has to offer.
2. Football is more than a sport - it's a way of life
Football is popular all over the country, but if you've always been a casual fan, you may want to get serious before your big move. In Texas, the passion for football extends far beyond Super Bowl Sunday. People live, breathe, eat and sleep the sport in the Lone Star state, and high school football games are often treated with a level of respect and esteem typically reserved for NFL playoffs. In fact, college and high school teams are the bedrock of Texans' football fanaticism, so be sure to find out when your local schools are hosting games and rallies. Not only is cheering for the home teams an opportunity to see some great football, but it's also the perfect way to get involved with your new community.
3. The weather can be unpredictable, but it's worth it
If you can't take the heat, get out of the...state of Texas. Texas weather is notoriously warm, and certain parts of the state experience high levels of humidity. As such, you'll want to locate a reliable air conditioner and a local pool or watering hole to keep you cool in the Texas heat. Despite the high temperatures - which typically peak over the summer - the Lone Star state is home to plenty of sunny, temperate days that will inspire you to spend lots of times outdoors.
4. Your tastebuds will thank you
Three words to describe Texan food? Sweet, smoky and spicy. The two prevailing cuisines in the Lone Star State are barbecue and Tex-Mex, and homegrown Texas natives take both styles extremely seriously. This is good news for transplants, who can take advantage of the numerous delectable eateries that are scattered throughout the region. If the thought of authentic Texas BBQ makes your stomach particularly excited, consider focusing your home hunt on Houston. The city is home to tons of Texas-style barbecue restaurants whose cooking methods range from traditional to experimental.
5. Don't mess with Texas
This old adage continues to hold up. "Don't Mess with Texas," which was originally created as a political campaign slogan, has stood the test of time because it truly embodies what the Lone Star State is all about. Texans take a lot of pride in their history and culture, and are definitely not to be messed with. Despite this steely motto, however, the people of Texas have hearts of gold. As a transplant, you can count on the kindness of Texans to help get you through your transition.
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