*Blink* We’re back from California.
After a week of hunting down apartment, taking in a few of the local restaurants, cheering for the Bears, meeting new friends/old friends, and heading out to navigate the area on a sparkling two wheeled wonder, we drove out of the San Francisco Bay, through Sonoma, over the Sierras and into the Willamette Valley yesterday, returning home victorious.
Having identified a place to hang our hats, we can now imagine a move to the Republic of California (though the reality itself has yet to sink in.)
Sitting now, in our tree-house of an apartment, perched over-looking the quiet whir of the city, listening to the splash of cars through puddles on the road below, and watching the bouncing of umbrellas amidst the reds/oranges/yellows/browns and greys that are Portland in the fall, its strange to think that my new vista will include a tremendous, iconic red bridge, a sprauling city of 9 million people, the sun, and bits of the sea.
My writing perch in California will be completely different from the one that I presently enjoy because the immediate surroundings of our new place in the East Bay is a world away from the Pearl in Portand. My runs and rides will not be out the door once we move. The streets in Portland are rarely dirty – so much rain washes away any filth. Traffic isn’t so much of an issue when you can ride/walk/run to any place you desire. I will have buck up and get a California driver’s license. Gulp.
But some things are the same. Our new apartment is comfortable, open, bright, and airy — just as this loft has been. The new place is slightly larger than this one, and offers a few of the little luxuries that we would desire if we could hitch our Portland loft to a hot air balloon and float it into Berkeley; more south facing windows, a larger kitchen for more cooking/better photography, a small porch for our olive tree, and a spare bedroom for guests. It is tucked just off a busy street…just as this one is and provides a good jumping off point to the metropolis that lies at our doorstep.
Its strange to think that, six months ago we moved into this tiny little refuge, we were conducting an experiment of self. Could we, in fact, live more mindfully, simply, and comfortably all at the same time?
The answer is clear now. An unequivocal “can we imagine living any other way?”
When we leave Portland in one month, we will depart with less baggage than we returned home from Japan with. A better sense of sustainable style. A true desire to live in a modern, sensible, comfortable home. And from that, we imagine, will grow a charmed modern, sensible, comfortable lifestyle that is just as engaging as we have found this little Pacific Northwest haven to be.
And so the countdown begins.