I have a blog over on Blogger, but I decided to move my blog to my website to keep everything in one spot, nice and neat. And I haven't blogged in months. I've been busy moving across country, settling into a new job, settling my kid into a new school, and starting up school of my own. I'm working toward my Doctorate. I'm still writing, even if it's only a few lines a day.
Here are my observations since moving to Portland, OR from Albuquerque, NM:
1. Holy cow, there's a lot of green. So much green. So many trees. Moss growing on the sidewalks. Gardens sprouting everywhere. If there was an apocalypse, the forest would consume Portland within years (maybe months), leaving no trace behind. Humanity, vanished. But it sure is pretty.
2. There are so many people, and so much traffic. I visited Portland over ten years ago, and it was a quiet place. Not this madhouse of traffic and humanity. I know, I'm part of the problem moving here. But hey, at least I'm not a dreaded Californian!
3. People can be slobs in Albuquerque. I've seen numerous people toss trash out their car window or just leave trash sitting out. But there's more trash here. While I haven't seen anyone toss trash out their window (yet), it's coming from somewhere. Maybe the wind blows it out of trash cans sometimes, but mostly I think people are worse slobs here, which is too bad because all the green makes this place damned gorgeous.
4. People are dog crazy here. There are dogs everywhere, and pet stores galore. We've taken our dog, Frankie, to a Corgi meet up and met some really nice people that way. And you can't beat watching a bunch of corgis trying to herd one another.
5. People really are weird here. I fit in, finally!
6. Portland has a reputation for good food. It's well deserved. My favorite activity during the summer and fall was going to the local farmer's market and eating. I finally had Ethiopian food, which I've been dying to try. I've been to a Japanese bakery. My next food goal is to head to the large food truck pod downtown and start on one end, then work my way to the other. The food is the reason why so many people here run and bike. You have to exercise to enjoy all of this food.
7. Sometimes people talk about the Seattle Freeze and how it carries down a bit to Portland. People are polite here. They're not as friendly to strangers. I don't get as many smiles and waves on my runs as I did in Albuquerque, but I have found that if I just talk to someone about something they feel passionate about (biking, food, books, their kids), then they're warm and fuzzy and it's all good. So it takes a bit more effort to reach out to people here, which is challenging for an introvert like me, but that's okay.
8. It's true, it rains here often. But everything is green for a reason, ya know. And it never bothered me until this past week when it actually rained a lot, and quite heavily. That was the only time I felt like a drowned rat since moving here.
This year--my first full year in Oregon--I'll have a book come out, and I'm currently working on another book. The going is slow because much of my spare time and brain power is devoted to my coursework, but my writing goal for the year was to write new words every day, even if it was only one sentence. So far, I'm pleased to say, I've kept up with that.
I write fantasy, horror, and science fiction. I attended the Odyssey Writing Workshop in 2007, and I belong to an online writing community called Codex. I'm not ashamed to admit I'm addicted to coffee and chocolate.