Sunday, August 17, 2008


Portland's a funny town. Ninety percent of the people you met have moved here--most aren't "from" Portland. They'll still ask me why we moved here, when our reasons are probably similar to their own.

The logical reasons were these: we were in Chicago, but knew we didn't want to live the kind of lives we'd have to live to live the kind of lives we wanted to live. If you know what I mean. We didn't want to commute for an hour, or work seven-to-seven, or climb corporate ladders. We wanted a home with a yard, and weekends to do stuff.

So that meant we'd leave Chicago. And having grown up in the suburbs, I pretty much knew that... well, let's just say I'd rather chew off my arm than go back. No offense to suburbanites--it just wasn't for me.

So that opened up the whole country. Where should we go?

We didn't want hot, so that ruled out the southwest, and the south east, and... well, the south. And I'd had it with snow, so that ruled out the Northeast. And the Midwest. And we wanted an airport, and museums, and public transportation. And affordable homes.

That left Portland.

So, that's the logical reasons we had for moving here. It was all--we knew what kind of life we wanted to live, so we had to find a way to live it. We occasionally have to remind ourselves to actually live in the city, though. I mean, if all we do is go to work, maybe go to the movies, and shop at big-box stores and stripmalls... we might as well live in a suburb. Any suburb. So I make it a point to make it to farmer's markets, and Saturday Market, and the library, and walk to the coffeeshop (not a coffeeshop that rhymes with Blarbucks) and the movie theater and the grocery store.

Even, better, though--if a picture is worth a thousand words, then I have lots and lots of words about why I moved here. Because Portland puts on (free) events like this.

That? That's proof that Portland and us is a good match. Any city that has that as a free event is my kind of burg.

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