This past weekend, the 206 had the pleasure of visiting Winston-Salem, North Carolina: home of Ben Folds (my fake celebrity boyfriend; swoon), Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, and my mom. The purpose of the trip was to spend some quality time with my grandparents, and I really enjoyed the visit. It had been 15 years or so since I’d last been there, and it’s funny how one’s consciousness will pick up the minor cultural differences between Seattle and North Carolina that didn’t occur to me when I’d visited as a kid. A few observations from the trip:
- The South is very into name brands in general, and I noticed several girls wearing Burberry rain boots for some reason. There were more people wearing rain boots in Winston-Salem than in Seattle per capita; it was a bit odd. I also spotted 4 or 5 people (women and girls) wearing Missoni for Target pieces in the various airports I was in during the trip: they’d better watch themselves; that stuff’s in high demand.
- Shopkeepers, waitresses and other service people I encountered throughout the trip were all so syrupy sweet; addressing their female customers as “darlin'” or “sweetheart”. In Seattle, this type of discourse would come off as moderately crazy (or a bit disingenuous at the very least), but it’s not an act. They really are that nice in the South.
- THEY SELL BLUE BELL IN NORTH CAROLINA NOW. This was worth the trip all by itself. Not familiar? Check it. The. Best. EVER.
The South also has a way with style, as evidenced by the trip my grandmother and I took to Reynolda House, the former residence and surrounding property of tobacco industry magnate R.J. Reynolds and his family. Katherine Reynolds, R.J.’s widow, had a keen sense of fashion and had quite the savvy design sense for a girl from Mount Airy, North Carolina. Some shots I captured in the Reynolda House:
The South has a style all its own that is completely unlike other parts of the country, and the southern grandeur of the Reynolda House captures the sensibility of the region perfectly. Without a doubt, a sight to see. And just for fun (and because I saw this on the street when we were out and about walking around in downtown Winston-Salem and couldn’t believe I’d actually captured it in the wild), the urban sombrero: