(More draft cleaning for @aprilkquiohI's #draftmas cleaning house) I grew up in St. Louis but moved to San Francisco 17 years ago. I visited Chicago & Indianapolis recently, and they reminded me so much my old hometown. Here's what got me nostalgic.
  1. The crisp Fall/Winter air
    Cold, brisk, super clear with out any haze. I miss that!
  2. The brick buildings
    I forgot that bricks are what everyone uses to build things in the Midwest. In California it's stucco.
  3. The size of everything
    So big. So tall. So wide. The restaurants seem gigantic! The rooms are huge everywhere we go!
  4. The friendliness
    Midwest friendliness. It's so weird. Folks talk to you. Randomly. They say excuse me. Or sorry. Or thank you.
  5. The Midwest portions
    Big and bigger. Except for the fancy fine dining Michelin star restaurant we went to where we paid a ridiculous price for dinner that didn't fill AJ up. We had to get wings later on at the hotel bar. I guess some things are the same everywhere.
  6. Pop, not soda or Coke.
    Though we actually called it soda in St. Louis. But we heard the word pop fairly often. You NEVER hear "pop" in California. It's soda.
  7. You DRIVE everywhere.
    Sure you also drive everywhere in Los Angeles. But in SF you walk or take MUNI/BART or Uber. Not so much in the Midwest. Walking is just not done.
  8. Long desolate drives on the highway with acres of grass and farmland.
    I'd call it bucolic but really it's just boring. But comfortably so.
  9. Everyone is so tall!
    The average height is like 6'0" for a guy out there. In SF it's more like 5'8" or 5'9".
  10. Everyone seems so white! Or black!
    But very few Latino/Hispanic or Asian. I forgot what it's like to be the only Asian at a coffee shop or restaurant.