Monday, July 27, 2009

Slowly settling in...

It has not rained once since I arrived 2 weeks ago. Not once. And it's scorching hot the last few days. Luckily Portland is a place with low humidity. Strangers have asked me how I like the Oregon summer so far. I always respond “it’s gorgeous!” And then a few will say – almost gleefully – “Well just wait until November hits with all the nonstop rain for 4 months!” At this point I say "bring….on…the rain".

There’s been a shift in the last week where I am less in vacation mode and more in business mode: the business of fixing my car and the business of finding a home to rent. I can’t help but wonder if having owned a home of my own for 7 years makes me pickier, but I am determined to find a place I love. The neighborhood I really like the most so far is called Sellwood but I’m open to other neighborhoods. Besides I'm told you can't go wrong with most places to live. Much of Portland is a bunch of neighborhoods with their own restaurants, boutiques and stores all sewn together. You can ride your bike from one neighborhood to another. And now that I have my own bike, I'm doing just that. I bought a refurbished bike that I love and feel safe riding. It may not be the prettiest thing, but it will be after I throw in a basket and a bell. Who knew I’d be riding on busy roads …sharing the road with cars?! I’ve spent more time on a bike since arriving here than my car – and that’s good because the car is currently in the shop getting a new head gasket: OUCH. 

Hiking is huge here. I hiked Eagle Trail in the Columbia River Gorge the other day and afterwards bought some fresh caught fish from fishermen in the gorge - and boy do they catch some big fish! I may have found the best tasting salmon ever.

There’s so much to do in Portland … I’m doing things I never imagined, like partaking in last friday’s Blogger’s and Beer meetup at the Green Dragon, where people mingle, blog, and drink. It was fun. Plus the ratio of men to women could not be ignored! (See more after video).

Alas, this past week hasn't been all easy as I settle more into being a Portlander and figuring out what direction to take with freelancing and creating online videos on the side. This week has also brought twinges of sadness, missing friends in Atlanta; being 3 hours behind makes a difference in talking. So as the nostalgia set in, I made a little video of the journey  over the last month from leaving Atlanta to heading west. The song I used in this video is one I played 1.1 million times on this road trip. It's a good reflection on what I was seeing and feeling.

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