I recently moved to Jackson, Mississippi. One lady, after seeing my Slovenian passport in the bank asked me “did you all travel here by train?”. I thought it was funny at the time, but now I understand how far from home I really am.
I come from a small central European country, which most Americans knew as the origin country of the president’s wife. Most of the times, people label me Eastern European, which keeps annoying me. But yes, I have a hard accent which I will probably never loose and no, I do not drink vodka.
Slovenia is bordered by Italy to the west, Hungary to the northeast, Croatia to the southeast and Austria to the north. It covers only about 8,000 square miles and has a population around 2 million. The capital is Ljubljana, which is as big as Jackson, but very different. Slovenian climate is mainly continental, except the coastal line which has a sub-Mediterranean climate and the Alps. The Dinaric Alps and Pannonian Plain meet in the territory, so we have it all – mountains and beaches, snow and sun. Historically, my origin country has been the crossroads of Slavic, German and Roman cultures. This is the reason we speak many languages. Also, nobody in the world but us speak Slovenian – and we travel a lot. My other languages are English, Italian, Croatian, Serbian, Russian and a little bit of German, Latin and Spanish. So I can communicate. A lot.
Before coming to Jackson I lived in Europe my whole life, travelling a lot for pleasure and later for work, but never thought about moving any place for longer than a month or two.
I arrived in Jackson last year, 2017, as a law-exchange student. One of the professors told me “You will see, there is something about Jackson. I went there for six months and stayed for four years.” I had no idea what to expect, when I walked out of the Jackson airport, but now is clear. I came here to learn about the southern culture and to be introduced to American football.