Posted by: chptr37 | 03/31/2009

Preface: Portland


Old hanger in the now-empty closet. It reads: Help me! I don’t belong here.


It’s time. Time to leave the life that I’ve known for many years. Time to move on and forward. Time to take a step away from the safe and into the unknown. If you’re coming here to visit this blog as a friend, family member, loved one, fellow writer or editor, enemy or worse, then you know a bit about what this is all about. If you don’t, the general gist is this: I’ve lived in Portland, Ore., for a long time. Now I’m moving to Scotland. In a rather round-about way. I’ll be driving across the country for three weeks, landing in Scotland after that, and then… well, who knows?

So, tomorrow–after weeks of packing, planning, prepping and getting rid of nearly everything I own–I’ll be driving out of this place I call home. I’ve already lamented about what and who I’ll miss–so much and so many–so here I’ll just focus on looking forward.

Way back when I arrived here, Portland welcomed me with pouring rain. Huge drops that shattered against the windshield and made it impossible to see. Fast-moving trucks hauling…something…that tried to swipe my then tiny Honda Civic off the road. I came into Portland along the Columbia Gorge and nearly died between the weather and the big trucks and the exhaustion and slippery hands on the wheel. And, yet, glutton for punishment that I am, I fell in love with Portland. The city. The mentality. The places to ride my bike and drink coffee and write. The opportunities. The people.

But I know I’ve worn out my welcome here. The city is changing. And despite all its dynamics, I can feel myself growing stale within its confines. So, tomorrow, I head out. It’s supposed to rain. To pour, actually. Which seems fitting. I hope Portland kicks me out with the same fierce drive that it welcomed me in.

Far and fast, s.


“One always begins to forgive a place as soon as it’s left behind.” -Charles Dickens



  1. C’mon and hurry up, woman! We’re waiting for you here!

    Hooray for your big adventure. xxx

  2. Darlin, I hear you on Portland. I’ve been here 25 years, on and off… and this week, I applied for jobs in Africa and Costa Rica.

    These confines are gorgeous and green and grandalishus–but I hope to join you on the traveling road, get me out there once again, because all of my boots were made for walking.

    Drive safe.

  3. Nix: I’m coming, I’m coming, as fast as my little feet will carry me! I can’t wait!

    Chris: I’m so sorry I missed you in the leaving. I’ll return though. Or you can come and see me… Anytime.

  4. Good luck Shanna, and belated (as I write this) happy birthday. I’ll be following along your travel blog and hoping lots of good things come your way.

  5. Thanks Saskia! I love hearing from you…once I have regular internet again, I can’t wait to re-follow all my fave writer blogs and websites 🙂

  6. […] This is where it all began. Almost a year ago. I know it’s early to talk about this year of travel as though it’s been completed, because in truth I have one more plane ride and one more car ride to take before I land at the way-out-in-the-woods writer’s retreat that will end these twelve months. But I’m already thinking ahead, moving on to what might be next, planning. I’m a good planner. […]

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