Montana is always changing. The state is growing, and our population is growing. There are many reasons for why people are coming to Montana and most of them impact the outdoors or the free and simple ways that Montanans cherish.
Many Montanans are from somewhere else. Pioneers, migrating peoples, and those fleeing urban centers are on the list. Even those that call themselves True Montanans have roots from somewhere else.
Like it or not, change is inevitable. We all have things that we miss. Here are a few that you may share.
Seeing people smile! Facemasks and social distancing take the joy of smiling and emotion away. As a teacher, I made a living reading faces and body language.
Waving! We now see fists in the air, hands up, fingers, or no response at all. Any gesture is avoided thanks to fear of being too close, getting sick, or saying something offensive.
Spaces without Graffiti! Our walls, monuments, and abandoned buildings, rockfaces have become billboards for foul language or political statement. Count how many train cars have no graffiti on them.
Gas Jockeys! When was the last time someone pumped your gas and washed your windshield?
Seeing folks off their cell phones. Try counting 10 cars and see how many are on their cells.
Quiet Campgrounds. Any campground is now full of huge RV’s running generators so they can watch their technology. Try sitting outside at a campfire and not hearing a generator.
Public rivers, accesses, and lands that are not crowded and have game and fish to catch. Parking is tough, rivers are crowded, fish are hook scarred or gone, and wild game is on private land that is posted.
This is not just a Montana thing. You can find these same issues everywhere. If it is not there yet, it’s on its way. As the world grows, things will get more crowded, values will change, and the Good Old Days will be memories.
For more Montana Grant, find him pumping his own gas at www.montanagrantfishing.com.