The Wyoming focus of this site’s background images is going away for an indeterminate period of time.
There are a million things that could throw a monkey wrench into this, but at least this time the worst-case scenario (har!) is that our existing plans to retire to Wyoming in <mumble>
years would remain in place. Meanwhile, Mrs. McG is pursuing an opportunity that could see us moving out of Georgia years sooner than planned — to Montana.
The downside to doing this would be that it isn’t Wyoming. And that it would be a place that gets a whole lot colder in the winter (with interruptions thanks to some schnook) (er, Chinook), and has no schools in the Mountain West Conference. Also the flag is boring, one of those state-seal-and-state-name-on-a-blue-background flags I’ve managed to avoid living under in my five-and-almost-a-half decades. And they have a state income tax.
But both UM and MSU are in the Big Sky Conference, as is my alma mater, Sacramento State. So I might get to see the Hornets play on TV sometimes. Wait, am I calling this an upside or a downside?
My mother was born and raised in Montana, and my parents’ firstborn, who died in 1946 at age ten months, is buried in Missoula. I haven’t seen that grave since I was four years old.
Montana is bigger than Wyoming, with more people but also more open, empty space. It currently has a Democrat governor, and one of its two U.S. senators is likewise a Democrat — as are all but one of the statewide elected officials. Come to think of it, that’s how Georgia was when we first moved here.
If we do move to Montana, odds are that’s where we’ll stay after retirement, but we can always visit Wyoming from there.
Anyway, given the possibilities, it makes sense to use more generically Western themery on this site, hence the current background.
Afterthought: It’s just occurred to me that Montana doesn’t have a single iconic image everyone associates with it, other than the outline of the state’s shape on a map. Wyoming has the bucking horse and rider logo you see in the previous entry; Colorado has the “C” shape thing from its flag; Utah has the beehive.
You can identify South Dakota from depictions of Mount Rushmore, New Mexico from the Zuni sun symbol on its flag, and Arizona from a saguaro cactus.
Kansas has the sunflower; Nebraska has Chimney Rock. For that matter, Wyoming and Arizona also have iconic flags. What does Montana have? When you think of Montana, what image pops into your mind?
Then again, Idaho’s kind of in the same boat. And you notice I didn’t mention North Dakota at all…
Afterafterthought: My cell carrier, currently, is Google’s Project Fi. There are some awkwardnesses about dealing with Google that would get in the way of continuing to use them if we move to Montana. I’m assuming Fi uses the same pool of phone numbers as Google Voice, which has no local numbers in the town we’d be moving to.
It looks like I’d have to go back on AT&T with Mrs. McG for my cell service.
Update: I’ve done something to short-circuit the suspense: ordered a Montana coffee mug. We will almost certainly know we’re not moving by the time it arrives.
‘Nother Update: Mug has arrived, bad news hasn’t. Don’t know what to think.