1. Your storage unit comes with a few dead scorpions and a live 10-inch centipede. (That photo is the real deal. That sucker crawled out from under our storage unit building when the rain started.)
2. In every gas station you will hear blaring love-sick cowboy western music over the speakers.
3. If you stop in any small town McDonald’s, you will find at least one really old farmer in a cowboy hat. He might even tip his hat to you if you don’t look like you just drove in from New York or California (no offense to my NY and CA buddies!).
4. You see about 90% more Texas flags than you do American flags.
5. Everything is bigger and better.
6. THE MEXICAN FOOD ROCKS!!!!
7. There isn’t a restaurant that doesn’t serve jalapeños as a condiment.
8. Everybody says, “Howdy” (the informal version of “Hi”) as a greeting. What else would you expect of the “Friendship State”?
9. It takes at least an hour to get anywhere you are going (and not necessarily because of traffic). If you go “a ways”, you might be talking about a 3-4 hour drive (such as between Houston and Austin or Dallas and Houston).
10. If you break down, it only takes about five minutes and an ex-marine wearing a cowboy hat and driving a “Superduty, fully-loaded 350 Big Dooley” will arrive on the scene with a tow chain to assist you. He won’t let you pay him for his help, either. (This has actually happened to me – when I got stuck in the mud trying to turn my vehicle around while going on a field trip with the kids). I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been helped by friendly Texas drivers in my life.