Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Portland Now (Redux)

Oh, sweet sugar - I made it to Portland safely! It was a pretty intense trip though. I left Pittsburgh on Tuesday and drove out to Bloomington, Illinois where I stayed with my friend, Rebekah and her family. I arrived as Chicken Fajitas were getting ready to be eaten. I was pretty happy to get there in time for that. Those Fajitas were good. It was really great to see my friend, Rebekah and her family again as well. Girls are pretty funny though sometimes...like when a bug scampers across the floor and they jump up on the couch screaming and pointing. Good times.

I woke up fairly early and began my journey to Colorado. What a boring day that turned out to be. It rained pretty much the entire trip. Iowa was very uneventful. Nebraska proved to be the same until about halfway through, then it cleared up and I started seeing countryside that was new to me and not so boring. I crossed into Colorado before the sun went down and saw some interesting rolling hills there as well but by the time I got to where a lot of the scenery I'd like to see would be, it was dark and a snow storm decided to attack me.

Colorado was really very pretty. My friend, Greg, took me to see a lot. Up into the mountains we drove, hanging out in Denver before hand and checking out various other places on the way, such as Garden of the Gods. It was really great. I hope to have pictures up soon.

After a few days, I left for Salt Lake City. I hit another snow storm on the way out of Colorado but once I got around 40 miles away from the border, it cleared up and the scenery was intense. It was like God painted it himself. The colors were so vibrant and rich. Greens and reds and browns and blues, it was pretty awesome. Utah only added to that with it's vast desert landscape. It wasn't boring though, not with the different cliffs and canyons hanging around and the dulling colors that had long since faded in the sun. It was the perfect buildup to driving into Salt Lake. I drove down into a canyon and essentially turned a corner to see what I would describe as The Shire in real life. Huge, gorgeous green hills. Green mountains. Shortly after this, I turn another bend, and snow capped mountains are greeting me, beckoning me to come drive through them. It was a great entrance into the state and I definitely have to say, Utah might be the prettiest state I've seen yet.

I stayed in Salt Lake for the night with some friends, after hanging out with them. I woke in the morning for my last drive of the trip. Finally. I was exhausted, physically and mentally. I was ready to rest. Problem was, which I didn't know at the time, is Idaho would be an even bigger mental strain than the trip had been yet. Why is Idaho such a mental strain? Because it's so utterly dull and boring. Driving through it for hours on end is not the way to finish off a trip, especially not when you're spent after days of traveling alone already. At least previous states gave me something to look at and say "wow" to. Not Idaho. My only wow came in the form of boredom and annoyance. I'm sorry if you're from Idaho...but I do not like the state. It wins worst state to drive through. Seriously.

Oregon was interesting at first though. I thought it was nice when I first drove into the state. After an hour or so, it changed scenery and I was impressed a bit again. Then another hour and a new change. By the time I got to within 100 miles of Portland, I started saying wow again. The canyons and giant green cliffs; rocks penetrating out the ground. The highway winding along with the river, following it's stream all the way. Around 30-40 miles outside of Portland, the scenery took a turn for the magical. Just this area alone could give what I saw in Utah a run for best scenery. Waterfalls, a forest of pine trees far as the eye could see, the road winding along the river. I thought I was driving towards Neverland or something. It was really something to see.

I finally arrived in Portland on Sunday. Met my new roommates and began to get settled in. Now, I'm at my desk in the These Numbers Have Faces office, writing this to you before I head out for the day to enjoy my birthday. Not sure what all I'll do, but it'll be a good day nonetheless. Things are good. I enjoy it so far and think I will enjoy it for a long time.

*Note about These Numbers Have Faces*
We just introduced our newest campaign today, the Women's Empowerment Fund. Please go check it out, it's going to be an amazing program helping the women of South Africa. Also, if you like soccer, check out our World Cup Benefit Bracket. $10, you pick the teams and if you win, you get prizes. The money goes towards Soccer and Education programs in South Africa. So head on over to www.thesenumbers.org and check that out! Thanks!

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