My friend Laini started Sunday Scribblings with her friend Megg and I thought I’d participate this week as I couldn’t resist the prompt: Why I live Where I Live.
oh my. portland, oregon. just before graduating from college my friend karen and i took a roadtrip from tallahassee, florida to seattle, washington. over 3000 miles of hostels, exploring new cities, and adventures. i had never been west of dallas, texas so the world truely opened up and showed it’s beauty to me during our 4 week journey. we were 2 girls, on the edge of college graduation, exploring our nation, it’s cities, and it’s truth, in search of our own path, our own truth, and a place we could possibly call home. i knew there was a world outside of florida and i wanted to discover it, feels it’s presence, and skip to it’s beat.
the moment we arrived on the West Coast, i felt intrigued, overwhelmed, and connected. it was a different world, with all of it’s beauty, hills, coastal highways high above the sea, and hippies everywhere! San Francisco was our first West Coast stop, then upward to Portland, where we stayed for a mere 18 hours. It was Summer. Portland was at it’s very best with it’s blanket of roses, charming cottages everywhere, views of the mountains, waterfront downtown, parks everywhere, open markerts, lots of dogs, open cafes with outdoor seating, funky people driving old volvos, a lively downtown, and a liberal mindset.
i had never been to europe at the time, but i imagined Portland to be very much like a european city to me. i was very, very in love with it. so much so that i felt at Home. and now that i’ve been to europe, portland still reminds me of any european city where you’d find people riding their bikes, or having sidewalk dinners and beers, or hopping on the light-rail to go downtown, or selling their art at the markets.
after the big roadtrip out west, i decided i would go back to florida, graduate from college, save my money for one year, and then move to Portland, all alone, but a girl following her heart. that is exactly what i did 7 years ago and it’s been one of those decisions that changed the course of my life, in a grand, and spectacular way. lucky for me, i met john that year in florida while i was saving my cash, and convinced him to come with me to a city he had never seen before. and like me, he loved it from the moment he arrived.
Portland has a strict urban growth boundary line, so you can drive 20 minutes in any direction and be out of the city and into wine country, hiking trails, farmland. there is no sprawl here. the beauty of the city’s surrounding natural land is preserved. i could go on and on about why i live here. john says i’d make a great tourist guide for the city, but the truth is this city is a great fit for us, even with all the rain. my heart, my spirit, my dreams, all grew up here. and i will always think of it fondly and consider it Home.