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Topic: Relocating to Portland  (Read 2348 times)
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« on: June 19, 2005 11:33:46 AM »

Hi there, this is a little off-topic,(off any craft topic!)but I'm hoping some of you groovy craftsters can help!

We (me, husband, sweet little boy & dog) emigrated to the US from London almost a year ago. We currently live in Sarasota, FL. We love the US, and it's great for us for a whole load of reasons, but Sarasota, whilst beautiful, is so dull I think I'm losing my mind! We've been lucky enough to meet some fantasic people here, but they are few and far between. The average age is about 60, there is no nightlife (everything is closed by 9.30!!!!), the mood is pretty right-wing and Southeren Baptist (which is bizarre to me, coming from a pretty secular society), I've found the attitudes here shockingly racist, in a very covert way (again, I assumed that everyone would be a bit more chilled about people of different & mixed races...it's 2005 for goodness sake!) and blatantly homophobic, and this place has the creative vibe of my left flip-flop.

We both agree that hey, Sarasota has it's good points-beach, weather, etc, and it's a great retirement place..., but we're not dead yet! My lovely husband has an old travelling chum in Portland, and as he's been chatting to her over the last few months, we've thought, hmmm....maybe Portland might be a good place to settle?

So what's your thoughts? Portland seems to be a groovy city, I love the green aspect of it, it also seems to be a lot more 'arty' (oh how i hate that experession, but hey...) and-gasp-there seems to actually be some life there! I'd love to know your opinions....we plan to take a couple of trips there in the next few months, but I'd appreciate your comments...feel free to pm me or post it here when you have a minute!

« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2005 11:40:47 AM »

I live in Vancouver Washington, which is just across the I5 bridge from Portland.  Portland's pretty cool.  They have a lot of "interesting" stuff.  It's a LOT of rain though.  And I mean a lot.  Other than that, it's just a pretty average city.

Oh, and I don't know if you're into soccer but if you are, make sure you go to a Portland Timber's game.  They have their own little British fan club called the Timber's Army.  They're the funniest bunch of people you'll ever see.  Might want to check that out...
« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2005 11:47:06 AM »

this fall i was living in St. Petersburg FL (across the sunshine skyway bridge a bit from Sarasota) while i went to school there --- had pretty much the same reaction as you. except i was with people my own age who were awful and homophobic and racist and terrifying.
so i moved to portland, and have been going to school here. so i can tell you really easily....
it is SO much better then florida!! it is rainy and a bit cold and sometimes gray. but right now, when i look out my window, there's sun and happy birds, so it isn't all bad. there are a lot of crafty folk in portland  -- if anything i'd say too many because i always feel trendy when i'm sitting somewhere knitting and look up to about a zillion people doing the same... great yarn stores, great fabric stores, great bead stores, no sales tax! hurrah for oregon!!
the one thing i would say is that is IS quiet, nightlife-wise. i'm assuming you're over 21, which helps oh-so-much, but even so, it isn't wild and crazy too often. friday/saturday nights are the most exciting... that said, there are things to do on late nights- bars, clubs, shows, movies (good art movies!), lots and lots of coffee...
DEFINITELY come check it out. it's a pretty impressively unique place!

good luck!!!

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« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2005 03:54:25 PM »

As a native Northwesterner with duck feet, I can tell you that I couldn't imagine living in a better place. I relocated from Seattle four years ago, and Portland is what Seattle was more than 10 years ago. The people are friendly, the music is varied, it's very outdoorsy and there's always something to do. Only one caveat: BE PREPARED FOR THE RAIN. It will rain forever during Fall and Winter, but it will make you appreciate Spring and Summer that much more. We have all four seasons here. It's amazing. Welcome!
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« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2005 11:46:47 PM »

I moved to Portland 3 years ago from San Diego and now i can't imagine myself living anywhere else. There's tons of stuff to do. Public transportation here is fantastic. There's tons of indie business here. Tons of music. Trees and parks if you're the out doorsy types. I don't really think it rains that much, it beats the monotonous weather of southern california. One downside I could figure though for you is the school system (you mentioned you have a son). The schools here are on a decline, no money, etc...they are constantly cutting programs, especially the arts. Over all, I really love Portland, and consider it my home now.

« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2005 06:49:53 AM »

Just wanted to introduce myself on this thread.  I'm planning a big move from Columbus, OH to Portland in August for graduate school.  I'm incredibly excited for things like public transportation and elevations above 400 ft.!  Oh yeah, and my grandparents spend the winter in Sarasota (what a stereotype, huh?) and I can barely stand to vacation there for a week, despite the sun & surf so I completely understand your desire to move on to better places.  Go for it!
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2005 04:58:29 PM »

Thanks so much for all your replies laydeez, after another bizarre week in the Bible belt I'm glad to know a place of normality exists! Just managed to offend a local Belle .....because I have a tattoo! Have you ever?Huh?
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« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2005 11:26:55 AM »

I'm a little late.. but I love Portland! It's such a great city, and it makes me proud to be an Oregonian, honestly.

I'm moving up there in September (yay.)

It's a lot like most big cities, but it always strikes me as a pretty clean and friendly city. People seem genuinely happy there.

The rain is bad, but no worse than anywhere else in the Pacific Northwest.  It's a pretty big change if you're coming from Florida. It's not nearly as humid here either. That's something to be prepared for.

I like the fact that Portland has a pride parade every year. I think it says a lot for the general attitude of the city. Granted not everyone thinks the same.. but Most people seem to be fairly tolerant.

It's a pretty arty town. Artisans seem to do really well there, which is great =)

so do strip clubs.. heh. (random little fact-- Portland has the most strip clubs per capita of any major us city.)

There's something for everyone, really..

Be sure to check out OMSI.


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« Reply #8 on: July 02, 2005 10:25:20 AM »

very very late for thos thread but anyway...check out the new forestry center museum it just opened a couple days a go and it is AMAZING!!!!  although i am sad to say no more talking tree.  oh i haven't actually been there but it's like i have i've spent so much time at their web site!!!  hehe...anyway oregon is absolutely beautiful and portland ....WOW!
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« Reply #9 on: July 03, 2005 11:02:34 AM »

movie theaters and book stores as well as strip clubs. Maybe it is all that rain? But I really don't think the rain is that bad...right now I am in Tucson for grad school but will be visiting portland soon! Can't wait. My boyfriend really can't wait to be around rain and trees and his observation "where the lows (in Tucson this time of year) are highs.

Goodbye Tucson! I will miss how everything dried so quickly!
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