Seven months ago, on my 31st birthday, I officially became a Montana resident. In the span of four months, my parents and I (plus the dog) moved 1,300 miles away, basically on a whim. I’d never moved before, had never visited Montana, had never even heard of the place we moved to. It’s all worked out very well for us, and I can finally say I genuinely love where I live.
I wasn’t kidding about the timeframe. It started in early February when we decided to sell the house and move out of L.A. We decided to move, sold the house, bought a new one, and moved in at the end of May. It took months for our brains to stop spinning and to get used to this being our home as opposed to a long vacation. Although to be honest, I think the dog still wonders when we’re going back.
When we broke the news to our loved ones, the reactions were all over the place. Some were pleasantly surprised, some were completely shocked, some were confused on why we’d want to leave Los Angeles. All wished us luck, with the exception of my paternal grandmother who remained in shock for days. She eventually wished us luck. Everyone wanted to know “Why Montana?” My answer is two simple words: The beauty.
Obviously there were a lot of reasons for moving, the biggest reason in my opinion is we were all miserable. I used to like L.A but after high school I developed a strong dislike for the city, without the constant social life I’d had in school I realized I didn’t actually like it there. I hated living in a huge city where I had to drive two hours to see nature, I hated dealing with the rude people who live there, I hated the filthy air, I hated all the traffic, I hated all the crime, I hated the constant sound of sirens and helicopters. All of that’s changed here. I now live in a four square mile city with a population of just under five thousand, there’s nature everywhere (including an unobstructed view of the lake from my deck), everyone here is very friendly, the air is clean, there’s barely any traffic, and the only helicopter is when the hospital needs an air lift, which is rare. There aren’t even any skyscrapers here, the tallest building in town is a three story hotel.
I thought I’d experience such a culture shock, but I’m adapting pretty well to the changes. I’ve even acclimated to the weather, I’m currently experiencing my first real winter and I’ve been loving it.