I believe Texans as a whole have a very distinct culture that is recognized virtually worldwide. We are full of state pride, we have that country twang and southern charm and Texas A&M is by far the best university there ever was or will be. That last statement may be a little biased, but hey, you’re reading this on a Texas A&M website.
I’m in Namibia, Africa right now and everything I have experienced so far is completely amazing. From the food to the people to every location and the animals, I think I can speak for everyone, saying our eyes have truly been opened to the diverse world around us. However, as we meet more people and travel to even more breathtaking places, I see how our group of 14 girls from Texas can’t go unnoticed. We aren’t worse or better, just different — we even had a few people in the capital city, Windhoek, ask to take pictures with us like we were celebrities. No matter the similarities I’ve noticed, Texan culture displays many differences that make us stand out from the crowd anywhere besides the lone star state.
The most obvious trait is our way of speaking. Namibia has very strong German influences tracing back before World War I so many natives have a mix of a German and/or Africans accent. Everyone here is soft spoken and slow to speak. In contrast we are loud and proud and ready to talk. We have a pretty witty group, with puns galore so a passerby can often hear a lot laughter. It’s kind of humorous that all I have to do is listen in order to find my group. Someone is always talking or laughing and I can pick their voice out if I’m even a little bit near by.
I’ve noticed citizens of the 25-year-old Namibia have quite a bit of country pride, but this group of Texans can definitely defend our state. They say Namibia is larger than Texas, well Texas is almost as big and we’re not even a whole country. Multiple people on this trip have jokingly said that Texas is their favorite country in the world and I completely agree with them. While we all know that our wonderful state is not actually a country, don’t you forget at one time we were The Republic of Texas before joining the U.S. and to this day we are the only state allowed to fly our flag at the same height as the American flag. Our culture is so engrained into our minds that state pride is part of our personality, our way of life. So much so that I also have an eternal amount of school pride for Texas A&M and for any organization that I’m a part of.
In the U.S., the southern states make up the “Bible Belt” because you will find a much higher percentage of churchgoers and practicing believers. Our group has started praying before every meal and that can be credited not only our personal beliefs, but also because of our culture growing up. Namibia is similar to Texas in this way, a gas station even had a religious message on its check out screen which I thought was pretty cool.
From the outside looking in you can’t understand it and from the inside looking out, you can’t explain it. I think this phrase describes Texans culture perfectly. We share a common ground that makes us a family no matter where we are in the world.