Wednesday, May 16, 2012

My Portland

Earlier this year, a very slick and cool video about this city made the rounds.  I was impressed by the production and even sent it to some of my relatives who like it here, but I started thinking about how it seems to leave out a lot of aspects of this city that are familiar to me and many others.  You know, people who don't spend all their time at Powell's and Voo Doo Donuts.

So here are some things about my city that are familiar to me:

Long stretches of this kind of weather.
Green parks where my dog can run free.

Moss on most every surface.

When it's not raining, dudes sitting outside waiting on beer.

Immigrants learning to read and write in English.

Inspiring graffiti.


On clear days, everyone with their cameras pointed up to the sky.

The sand dunes.

Amazing community centers.

Pink carpet in the spring.

This elder practicing her letters.

Urban chicken coops that are way fancier than yours.

Cool architecture even in the boring parts of town.

Waterfalls right outside of town.

Old Russian ladies waiting on the bus.

The smell of the street outside this bakery with the rotating loaf.

The bins of the discount food store near my work.

Little kids riding bikes to school.

Slugs everywhere, including those lying in my yard in mason jars that were captured by my son.

This is my Portland.  I usually go days, sometimes weeks, without seeing the river or a single bridge.  I don't see the downtown buildings, sports games, hipster donut shops.  This is a city full of all kinds of people.  And a lot of slugs.


Two Little Birds said...

Oh, lovely pictures, but brought a tear to my eye. I was sent over to your blog a while back to get my occasional PDX fix. Portland is my first love. We had to leave for a job a few years back - and the fact that after 5 tough years, my husband said, "Enough with this rain!". I love the rain. In general, Oregon is firmly planted in my heart. Not a day goes by that I don't think of my years spent in my sweet colorful little home on Morrison and taking my daily walks down the street to Laurelhurst Park. I miss my crazy neighbors, the fact that I could walk to Zupans in 2 minutes, and my favorite nook-and-cranny shops. Lucky, lucky you!

hotflawedmama said...

love it. love those pictures

greg's wife said...

Love the photos, and I loved visiting Portland on family trips years (decades) ago.

The photo of the person practicing their letters/handwriting, jogged my memory of Ramalda Spalding. It has been years since I researched her methodology to teach reading, writing, spelling, but if I recall correctly, she implemented her ideas on inner-city children whom everyone else thought had no hope. The results were astounding and many expensive/'high end' schools now use her program, Writing Road to Reading.

Just passing this along in case it is anything you might be able to use in your program. You are an inspiration!

Lynette said...

Superb post, Lori. I'm wondering how in the world you managed to turn the photo of the Russian woman at the bus stop sort of inside out. I noticed straight away when I looked at the bus stop marker to see if I could figure out where she stood and realized that no number is shaped like the number on the right. Then I noticed the signs on the pole. However did you get the photo like this? I'm quite curious over here, nearby in our beloved Portland.