It was 12 months ago today that Mia and I packed a hodge podge of bikes, clothes, snacks and other junk….and 2 cats into 2 cars and headed west. Most of our belongs were well on their way in a U-haul box to Oregon.
After spending a whopping 4 days in Oregon previous to this, we decided to make the bold move and come clear across the country. Maybe not fully realizing the enormity of it at the time helped. It certainly didn’t hurt being a bit naive at the time.
Some times it hardly seems like it was only 12 months ago that I was the CFO of Administrative Services, I felt like I knew every backroad, class VI road, and main road in the Merrimack Valley. I was living 12 miles from my childhood home, worked in the same building with my twin brother. Had people to ride with just about any day of the week.
Sitting here now, typing out this bit of information, I am comfortable enough to say I miss certain things greatly. I miss mountain biking with my twin brother. I miss the plethora of friends, the closeness of family, all the typical stuff that came with almost forty years of familiarity.
I am also self aware enough to know that I wouldn’t change any of the past 12 months at all….Well, I’d like my Guinness back, but that is about it.
In 12 months we’ve moved from NH to Tigard, OR, to Portland and finally bought a house in Hillsboro. There is almost nothing as depressing as going from home ownership back to renting. We never really unpacked everything we brought with us until moving into the house. Neither Mia or I ever thought we would end up buying a house just 9 months into moving here, but hell, things worked out.
I haven’t driven to work in over 2 months now. The combo of public transit and biking is all I need. Mia has even started to bike commute recently. I honestly wasn’t sure I would ever see that day. I am proud of her.
In 12 months we’ve been to Mt Hood quite a few times, been to Mt Rainier, St. Helens, seen Adams off in the distance, driven by Jefferson and seen the sisters, feeling so close it’s almost like you can touch them. We go from a rain forest, to a wine producing valley to high desert in just 2.5 hours. I’ve seen things like the Painted Hills, Silver Falls, and did a mtn bike race in the middle of nowhere (Hermiston, OR).
It’s beautiful country out here. Roughly 3-3.5 million of Oregon’s 5.5 million people population lives in the greater Portland Metro area and expanding down towards Salem, the state capital. However, just 5 miles west of our home you feel like you’re in the boonies and 15 miles east we’re standing in downtown Portland. No a bad thing really.
I don’t miss the snow one bit. We had a whopping 10 days of temps in the teens and low 20′s. Mia and I got to see 8″ of snow shut down a whole region, in New England there still would have been school. What sucked the most about the weekend is that it was the weekend we were supposed to move into the new house……delayed by 72 hours! But we made it.
I’ve got a couple running routes down and more than a few standard bike routes. I’m learning the backroads and oddities of the region and getting to see things that people who I work with and have been here for decades don’t know exist. Slowly, but surely it is becoming “home”. It’ll never supplant Bow, NH (don’t worry mom and dad). But it is a new life with the woman I love and for the millionth time I will say, I couldn’t have done any of this without her support.
That’s enough sappy crap for one night. I thank you for reading and I am really looking forward to the next 12 months. Hopefully developing a bit more of a “routine” and maybe becoming a bit boring at times…..after the past 12 months, a bit of boring might not hurt. I just don’t want too much boring.
Thanks for reading.