I feel the need to quickly explain myself from that last post. Here's the deal--it's different here than in California. Duh, right? But the differences are subtler than I anticipated, and more difficult for me to navigate. I had an assumption (bred, I think, in the unique California culture that I probably need to go immerse myself in Joan Didion to define) that I would easily navigate the social waters of my new home. And, to some extent, I have. I am making great, wonderful friends (many, many of whom, it bears mentioning, are not from around here.) And the prevailing culture is different--not worse, not better, just different--from what I had in L.A. And being away from L.A. lets me see nuances there that I was missing, or blind to, before.
I am, I fear, neither fish nor fowl, a bit of an outsider, which is, truthfully, how I've felt everywhere, my whole life. Maybe we all feel that way.