well played, portland.

Three months ago today I got on a plane with a one-way ticket to this amazing place. Here’s a small sampling of what’s happened since then.

I spent Christmas Day at the beach, getting sandy and cold and marveling at the sheer magnitude of the Pacific Ocean and the gorgeous light at the shore. We drank bourbon from the bottle and got drenched by a larger-than-it-looked incoming wave and crunched shells and flotsam underfoot and were generally delighted with everything we saw. Then went home and built a fire and read our books and made tea and were generally contented with everything we felt. Happy Christmas.

The few days after Christmas were spent with my siblings and their families at my brother’s house. We caught up on each other’s lives, took the kids downtown for an outing, cooked together, and watched approximately 20 hours of Mythbusters while the kids climbed all over all of us. It’s the first time we’ve all been together in over two years, and it was wonderful.

After the New Year, Shana and Shawn and I went to Seattle to see the King Tut exhibit. I got my first in-person look at Mount St. Helen’s, and have still not fully recovered my breath. In other firsts, I also saw the Space Needle (so odd, and the sky was perfectly dramatic), and had my first ramble through Pike Place Market and lost my heart to its fish-and-vegetable wonders and nearly-Victorian alleyways and hidden corners.

The text underneath this hilarity (posted on a wall opposite the Gum Wall at Pike Place) says “6 1/2 year old burrito unicorn, dearly missed by his family. His name is Pablo.”

Laughed and laughed and cried a little listening to people tell wonderful stories at The Moth in Seattle. (Shawn and Shana are wearing the same shirt. Unplanned and unnoticed until this moment. They’re adorable.)

On Mardi Gras, I wore a fancy mask and watched a fire dancer and ate fantastic New Orleans food and marched in a second line through the streets of Portland (Shawn was playing saxophone), gathering people as we went. It seems odd that my only experience of a second line should be almost as far away from New Orleans as you can get on this continent, but it was so fun and we had a great night.

My brother and his family live about an hour away by train, and I’m enjoying getting to know him and his beautiful wife better. I’m in love with my niece and nephew, and it’s so nice to walk through the door and have them recognize me and be happy to see me. I’ve babysat twice without mishap, and look forward to doing it a lot more.

There’s been lots more, and I’ve been bad about telling stories since the move. There was a fantastic New Year’s Eve adventure, and a really great party, and my introduction to Kung Fuesday and probably a hundred other things I never wrote about. So much to see and do and learn. I intend to get better at blogging again, but at least there’s this small record. Hooray for smart phones and the incessant urge for documentation. It’s been an amazing three months, and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

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