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Culture Shocks I’ve Had Since Moving to Massachusetts

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Lasell chapter.

I am a New England girl through and through, and while there are numerous similarities across the states in New England, living in Massachusetts for over a year has shown me some differences compared to living in Connecticut. You might be thinking, “Olivia, there’s no way there’s that many differences between Massachusetts and Connecticut,” but I’ve noticed differences between my life in Connecticut versus my life in Massachusetts. Here are some culture shocks I’ve had since moving to Massachusetts. 

Massachusetts Drivers:

I thought Connecticut drivers were scary until I witnessed how people from Massachusetts drive. I have genuinely never been more stressed than when I’ve been on the Mass Turnpike or driving through Boston. Every time I mention it to my roommates who are both from Massachusetts, they seem practically unfazed. It still blows my mind the way people drive here. Maybe someday I’ll amass the confidence to drive here. 


Speaking of driving, I rarely drove through a rotary until I moved to Massachusetts. I don’t think I even had driven through one. When I carpool to my student teaching placement, we drive through at least three different rotaries, and I’m still comprehending how they’re just a normalized part of driving in Massachusetts. Trying to merge into a rotary while people are coming from multiple directions sounds absolutely terrifying to me. I will gladly stick to the familiarity of driving on backroads and through suburban neighborhoods, thank you very much. 

Public Transportation

I’m realizing now that a lot of these culture shocks stem from being from a small, suburban town and moving to an area right outside of Boston. We have almost no public transportation back home, so the concept of the MBTA and the train system is mindboggling to me. I’ve taken an Amtrak train before, but city buses and the Green Line are a mystery to me. Thankfully, the last time I did a day trip into Boston, my roommate took care of navigating our transportation, so I was just along for the ride. 

Star Market The first time I stepped into my local Star Market, I was amazed. I know that sounds ridiculous, but it isn’t the typical Stop & Shop that I grew up going to. It took me a few shopping trips to get used to the unfamiliar layout and to find where my usual products were located. Now, I enjoy a good grocery shopping trip on the weekend with my roommates.

Olivia Post

Lasell '26

Olivia Post is the President of the Her Campus at Lasell chapter. She oversees all matters relating to the chapter, from editorial content to on-campus events. Beyond Her Campus, Olivia is a student ambassador for the Blue Key Society at Lasell. She is currently a sophomore at Lasell University, studying Secondary Education and English with a minor in Spanish. In her free time, Olivia enjoys reading, playing video games, and spending time with her roommates. She can also be found working on her latest crochet project, or watching RuPaul's Drag Race.