"I think you're in the wrong place." That's what a lady told me this weekend at a Halloween festival we were invited to when I asked at the food area, "Are there any vegetarian dishes here?" Oh, and she wasn't kidding either. No laughs, no giggles. Completely straight-faced and telling me without really saying it, "Are you serious? You live in Texas, the land of T-bone steaks, Angus burgers, and grilled BBQ, and you're asking me if there are any veggie foods here?" I just smiled at her, and politely replied, "You're right, I am."
My husband and I have known for quite some time that we weren't going to be Texans forever. And even though we have lived here for what feels like forever, honestly, I'm certain we were never made or built for the Texas heat or lifestyle. We always knew that one day, someday very soon, we would finally be living at a place where we can be outdoors all day and not worry about orange-level ozone dangers, where farmer's markets are open year round, where my family and I can eat lunch, have school, and just relax on a sandy beach, and where someone won't be telling me that I'm in the wrong place.
Besides being a cattle state, Texas is known for football. And well, we're not fans of football, soccer, or the rodeo. I mean, we can watch them (although not for very long), but you won't find us at tailgate parties or making time to watch them on TV. We like riding our bikes and extreme sports, like skateboarding, surfing, and for some time before we became completely devoted to green living, we were huge fans of F1 racing and other extreme car racing (besides NASCAR - another Texas thing we're not into). We enjoy the outdoors, but the things we like to do are - in my opinion - encouraged, appreciated and welcomed more in other places. That's where we want to be. That's where we feel our children can have a more fulfilling and meaningful life.
The lady at the Halloween festival was right, we are in the wrong place. But while we await our time to begin a new journey to a new life in a new place where living a simple, sustainable, and healthy lifestyle is the norm, not just a fad or what's considered popular at the time, all we can do is continue on our own path and not waver. We were born and built for other things. Pardon the cliche, but we want to be one with nature, caring for Mother Earth and hoping to do all we can to keep the planet clean for our children, our children's children, and well, you get the point. Then maybe someday we can inspire others to do the same.