These Things Are Weird But Totally Normal When You Live in Missoula
I think I'm almost fully Missoula-fied again after being gone for almost 20 years. There were quite a few changes in the time I've been gone, but I'm glad to say that some things never change, and Missoula continues to embrace its weirdness.
In fact, there are things that were totally normal to me about Missoula until I moved away. It wasn't until I moved back that I realized, "Oh yeah, this is a Missoula thing," and it was something I took for granted.
Here are a few of the things that I'm coming to realize might be weird but we in Missoula just think are normal. Have I missed any? Are any of these things still weird no matter how long you've lived here?
Every Weekend There's a Brew Fest or a 5K
I've pretty much always thought of Missoula as a beer town and a runner's town but I had forgotten just how many brew fests and runs there are. There are only two months out of the year when Run Wild Missoula doesn't host a race, yet there are still 14 races in 2023.
Watching the Deer Use the Crosswalks
The first time I saw it happen I really was shocked. Now, I just patiently wait for them to cross like they're a grade school class on a field trip.
You Own More Than Three Coats
You might own as many as nine coats if you've lived in Montana long enough.
If Somebody Yells "First Down" You Automatically Yell "Montana!"
It's like a reflex. I don't think it even has to be during football season. And along the same lines, it's totally normal to see people in maroon and silver facepaint at the grocery store on a Saturday morning in November.
You Need Two Routes to Drive Across Town
You'll need one route to get you where you're going and another route to get you home because just like in life, you can't go back the way you came.