Our move to the woods and off the grid.
I had planned on leaving Portland soon after I got out of the detox center. There were just too many shadowy corners with dark memories in that town for me to walk around comfortably anymore. But then Kara happened. She had very intentionally picked Portland as the place to start her adult life after getting her Master’s degree. She was drawn to its size, culture, and outdoor amenities. So I stayed and saw the city through her fresh eyes, which was helpful. But a few years later, we both felt like the next chapter was coming, we just weren’t sure what that would entail.
She still loved Portland for the most part, but quietly and almost without knowing it, was amassing her own list of reasons for an exodus. She worked hours north of town in rural Washington, Portland traffic was worsening, the cost of living had increased exponentially, and on down the line. Commonplace complaints that are part and parcel of living in a Metropolitan area.
We had both been independently dreaming of moving out into the woods for a while. Kara was from rural Pennsylvania and despite not being the biggest fan of her hometown, missed certain aspects of it. I had only lived in cities or suburbs my entire life but loved being in the wilderness more than just about anything at that point. We began discussing the possibility more and more earnestly. After enough map study, we noticed a number of sweet spots that were far enough away, but close enough to a city. Plus, I could work from just about anywhere, as long as there was some way of squaring up internet access. So we compiled a list of things we wanted in a house and agreed that if it was out there, we’d go. About a year after opening ourselves up to the idea, that place presented itself.
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