“You can tell that somebody is not from here if they talk to people in line at the grocery store.” We all laughed as we talked about the busy life of our metropolitan area’s culture while sitting in the living room of the small group leader’s home. “Yeah, we really don’t even know our neighbors’ names,” replied one woman in the group. I listened but then began to question the legitimacy of those observations—even if they had been made in jest. Of the ten or so gathered, probably two had grown up in the area. I found that “from here” didn’t actually mean “born and bred” here but more so “lived here more than ten years.” These comments explained how the prevailing culture had influenced the habits of many folks who moved here. But what was even more interesting was the fact that most people agreed about the concept of the statement that was made: most people don’t talk to anybody they don’t know, let alone gets to know their names.
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