Where are you from? This question never had much meaning for me until I began college. Then I became distinctly proud of being from Missouri. Not quite the same type of pride that a Texan has in blessing someone with their magnanimous presence, but a more subtle pride in being slightly different than the majority of my Oklahoma/Texas college peers.
When I graduated though and started residing in Oklahoma I had a new problem on my hands. Now I wasn't returning home every summer and living at my parents' house. In fact, I even quickly earned an earmarker of Oklahoma status - an Oklahoman license plate. Things were going southwest and quick! Yet I held on to my Missouri driver's license and rest assured that I would never ever truly call myself Oklahoman.
Last year I caught my break and moved about as far from Oklahoma as a person humanly can - Japan. I loved Japan and I thought I saw a glimmer of light at the end of my yellow tunnel. Yet, when tragedy struck I found myself returning to a place I felt comfortable in, loved, and wanted. That's right - Oklahoma.
And strangely, over the last year, I've started to like the place. Just this summer I've been to two beautiful parts of the state I had no idea existed - Robber's Cave and Tallequah. And even in day-to-day speech I sometimes catch myself telling people I am from Oklahoma City.
On Monday that transition will be complete. I will have bought my first home here where the land is grand, if not a bit yellow. I never saw myself settling down here, and in reality still don't. But for now at least I'm an Oklahoman. Perhaps that isn't such a bad thing. Sure I long for green trees, rolling hills, and even an occasional natural lake. But for now this is home.
Time to go ya'll. I'm fixin' to go on a walk.
P.S. To my wonderful brother Marc: this article is in no way to change your mind about L.A. I would have painted a prettier picture if it was! :)