Yes, it’s a whole other country

“Texas, it’s a whole other country.”

Isn’t that how the state promotes itself? Well, our Rotary hosts in Israel seem to think we’re on a par with at least one other nation. Our Group Study Exchange team has been introduced from Nahariya to Eilat as the “team from Texas,” while our traveling companions from the Netherlands have carried the national banner of that western European nation.

We’re proud of the designation, and to be frank, we haven’t dissuaded our hosts from using it as we present ourselves to them.

So much of our PowerPoint presentation talks of Texas tradition: big steaks, rodeos, cattle and oh yes, football (American style, of course).

We’re enjoying our budding relationship with our Dutch GSE partners as well. I’ve chuckled just a little as they refer to us occasionally as “Texans,” rather than “Americans.”

Since Rotary International doesn’t want us talking politics or religion during this exchange, I keep my mouth shut over the recent dust-up regarding Gov. Perry’s remarks dealing with whether Texas should secede from the Union. We won’t go there — you know?

But that’s all right. For now, we’ll carry the Texas banner high and with great pride. And we’ll let our hosts continue to portray us as a “whole other country” — which, of course, at one time would have been entirely accurate.