I told you all the other day about how sentimental I am getting about leaving my home and my garden, but I didn’t tell you about how sentimental I am getting about leaving my community, a place that, while I grew up in this town, returning in 2006 for “Portland 2.0” was a completely different chapter that is so very special in its own right. From introducing my husband to downtown on my Scott hybrid bike, to a million two-wheeled commutes from my house to my former jobs in the downtown core over the Broadway Bridge every day rain or shine, to the nursery down the street whose owner I became friends with (who then followed me to a horticulture therapy informational meeting and promptly changed careers…and recently left town on her own search for wide open spaces!), to the Garden Crawl group where I got inspired by others’ ideas of backyard beauty, to watching the solar eclipse with my husband and his coworkers, to spending so much time at the cafe across the street with two sets of former owners (I don’t care for the place now, the new owner has a distinct disinterest in the community and huge artificiality that turned us off very quickly…not to mention told the old barista that he only wanted to run a cafe for the money), to watching the boys down the street grow up before my very eyes (the one on the left is 9 now!), to reading with my kids as a SMART volunteer at the elementary school….these are the things I will remember. These are what make a community special. And I suppose much of this is why I’m leaving, because much of these memories are in the past. Life is different now, people have moved away, volunteers are not valued, kids have grown up, things are…well, different.
Why can’t we get all the people together in the world that we really like and then just stay together? I guess that wouldn’t work. Someone would leave. Someone always leaves. Then we would have to say good-bye. I hate good-byes. I know what I need. I need more hellos.