04 July 2009

Bend suits us

built like a climber
Originally uploaded by Ben McLeod
Well folks, we survived the packing and the moving.


As Nikki alluded, I kinda freaked out during our three-day packing and moving. Sometimes I'm not the most mellow person on this planet. OK, OK.... I'm never the most mellow person on this planet.

I hate moving. I hate packing. And yes, I blamed Nikki and her need to go to a school across the country.... I got mad because we're broke and I quit my well-paying job to become a full-time dad while she goes to school. Not exactly paying attention to "the big picture," I realize, but hey, we're allowed our moments of weakness.

Aren't we? Please say yes.

Whatever. What's done is done. It is what it is. And right now, "it" is us living with what we could fit in (and on) our car.

We're in Bend, and I'd say it fits us well. It's full of - as my friend Bryce would say - "the PLU." That's People Like Us. Unlike Hillsboro...

People here like the great outdoors, beer and each other. There are a ton of bikers (on our street the bike traffic is easily twice that of cars), climbers, skiers, kayakers, hikers and other adrenaline junkies. There are also several breweries and brewpubs. AND, AND.... the people are friendly. I constantly find myself in conversations with strangers (who don't feel like strangers). So unlike Hillsboro, where if you talk to someone you don't know they either ignore you, glare at you or try to talk about their intimate relationship to Jesus Christ (or how a woman's role is in the home.... and she should have, as one woman told me "as many babies as God allows. I hope to have eight." "Wow," I replied. "That's a lot. I hope you have help." "Oh yes," she said, "God." "Does God change diapers?" She stopped talking to me after that. I was fine with that.)

The boys and I have been riding around town checking out the playgrounds (all of which seem to have a mandatory climbing wall) and the river scene (it's been in the mid-90's, so a dip in the ice-cold river feels perfect!). On Nikki's first day off, the family went on a hike around Todd Lake, an alpine lake up near Mt. Bachelor. It felt so good to be in the mountains again.

We'll have to put Bend on the short list of "places we could move to when Nikki is finished with school." It would be a great place for the boys to grow up; there's skiing, world-class mountain biking, climbing, and, most important, a sense of community.


Dave said...

That's so cool! Sucks to be broke, but with surroundings like that, everything will work itself out.

Good luck and keep on truckin'!

Mary said...

Hey Ben and Nikki - Bend sounds perfect for you two - I wish I were there. The town we live in sounds a little like Hillsboro. But, that's all we could afford near these parts. At least it is Vermont.
Anyway, good luck with settling in there.

Beverley said...

Bends sounds nice.
"Does God change diapers?"
- well done, Ben.

Beverley said...

I mean Bend. not the Bends, which are not nice.

RMD said...

What are you feeding your kid? He looks tough. You guys were just in the wrong corner of Oregon...