I moved to Portland for many reasons: to explore a new city, to be around like-minded folks, and to be independent.
When you get a boyfriend a month into your freshman year, that last reason takes on new meaning. Sure, we explore the city almost every weekend, and we have a blast. But that's just it--we. The rare few times I have gone into the city on my own, I end up meeting up with Ted after a couple hours. I love Ted, and I love that we get out so much together to experience Portland. Just last night we saw War Horse (INCREDIBLE) at the Keller for free thanks to school connections--the second time we've been there in the last few days (Swan Lake on Friday). We get to do a lot, and I feel very lucky to have found a guy that loves to do the same things.
This school year I have been working on reclaiming that last reason for moving away from everything I know. I've been looking for the independence I had hoped to embrace in coming here. It hasn't been easy. Don't get me wrong, I'm a pro at being on my own--I am a homebody through and through, and love a quiet night in drinking tea and working on a project. But even when I'm at home in Phoenix, I don't really go out on my own much unless I have to run an errand, go to an appointment, or have plans with someone. When I have free time to myself, I usually opt to stay in and craft, hang out with my family and dog, or have a friend over. I never think to myself, "I should go get lunch and go window shopping today--on my own!" I think part of this is to save money, but mostly it's because I just never thought about it as necessary since I already spend a considerable amount of time on my own crafting and whatnot.
It's necessary. For the kind of person I am, at least.
This past Sunday I went into the city truly on my own for the first time. I didn't meet up with Ted, or anyone else. I went downtown on the school shuttle, took a bus to Northeast (the part of Portland I know least about), and spent the afternoon exploring the Alberta neighborhood, looking at shops, doing some homework with a iced chai at Barista, and taking a two-hour jewelry class at Collage where I made two pendants. It was an absolutely delightful day, and such a refreshing experience for me. As silly as it may sound, I am so proud of myself for doing this because one, I'm horrid with directions and got there without a hitch, and two, I really needed a "Kaylie" day to remind myself how important it is to my happiness to go out and do my own thing once in a while.
Independence and two pendants--what could be better?