I’m coming to the end of my time in Portland, and while I’m a little bit antsy to get back into regular life (after what seems like months of irregular life), I’m also pained to leave this city I love so much. Earlier today, I drove around the neighborhood where we lived when I was in high school. It’s been nearly ten years since I spent any regular time in NW Portland, and yet the streets around Wallace Park are as familiar to me now as they were then.
It’s been a lovely visit, filled with family, pets, a party to celebrate the solstice, Christmas Eve dinner with friends so old they are essentially family, many visits to thrift stores and lots and lots of cooking. We lit candles and made our annual Christmas wishes. On Christmas morning, my parents and I chopped veggies, stuffed a turkey and cooked breakfast together, just as we’ve been doing for years. My sister wandered downstairs a little later, bleary from having gotten up at 6 am to drive a friend to the airport.
I’ve walked nearly every day with my mom. I’ve gone through a few lingering boxes of childhood relics. I’ve been to two different New Seasons. I’ve read seven books and slept at least 10 hours a night. I made bear claws for my dad upon his request. I’ve talked to Scott everyday and have wished that he had been able to come with me.
Each time I come to Portland, I look around this jewel of a city and wonder why it is that I moved away. It is clean, friendly and incredibly livable. And yet, Philly calls. Tomorrow night, I’ll answer that call and go home.