Outtastatahs

by Gary Patton

Essays

outtawebWHEN WE FIRST MOVED TO NEW HAMPSHIRE, my wife and I were in for a surprise. Some states have little sense of their identities. That isn’t true of New Hampshire, which knows full well that it is a libertarian state and dares anyone to change it. Lord knows, we newcomers sometimes, even inadvertently, tried to budge it in a new direction, but we bumped into the attitude that Granite Staters don’t mind being different. As a matter of fact, they thoroughly enjoy it. The phrase “That’s not the New Hampshire Way” is heard here not infrequently. Newcomers to New Hampshire are known variously as “outtastatahs,” “people from away,” or “flatlanders.” As new-comers, we had a lot to learn about our newly-adopted home. If you move to the Granite State, you, not the state, will have to change. Granite doesn’t chip easily. This book reflects some of the lessons we learned.
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