Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Two years ago this day...

I always knew I would come back to Portland.

When I graduated high school I came to Portland for a year to go to school. I ended up going back to Ketchikan after my school year was over, but I always knew I would be back.

Time passed and eventually I started to visit my good friend Holly, who lived in Portland. We had gone to high school together and she has always been one of my best friends. Holly is awesome. Every summer for several years in a row I would come visit. In the summer of 2006 I came down to visit her and we ended up going to the Ash St. Saloon one night to see our friends' band, Fells Acres, play. It was there I met Jonathan, who is a friend of Holly's. I thought he was pretty cute from the get-go, but he didn't talk much (if at all). We still got him to take some pictures with us. (We are a little silly.)

Yes, that's right. Holly and I have mustaches drawn on our faces. In public. At a show.

Mustache party in the bathroom!

We also had sweet tattoos. Jonathan may or may not have been seething with jealousy.

Another sweet pic of my man-to-be and I.

(So, basically, when Jonathan met me I had a fake mustache on my face, fake tattoos on my arms, and was wearing my I Heart DJ Gay Ipod shirt, belted, at the Ash St. Saloon.)

Another year passed. I went to visit Holly again.

This time we started off by going to a Spoon show at the Crystal Ballroom. Jonathan just so happened to be there. The camera came out.
More pictures with Jonathan.

Holly and I did a lot of fun stuff together. We saw Justin Timberlake in concert, we car danced, we drank beer, we read magazines, we spent a lot of time at North Bar since Holly worked there (5008 SE Division in Portland! Go there and tell them Brittany sent you!), the bar Holly's brother Seth owns.
We took more pictures.

We match. It was fate that brought us together.

We ended up going camping with a large group of friends at Waldo Lake.

It was really pretty!

While the others were all swimming across over to a little island I asked Jonathan if he wanted to go to the dock and look at stars with me. (I'm pretty smooth, huh?)

What a horrible picture of me. But we were watching shooting stars and I was laying on a blanket with a cute boy, so whatever!

(Here is a gratuitous cute picture of Jonathan feeding a grey jay at Waldo Lake the next morning.)

We returned from the lake and I thought Jonathan was pretty darn cute. He still didn't talk much, but whenever he did say something it was pretty funny. I saw him again at North before I headed back to Ketchikan.

Thank goodness he was game for letting me take pictures that evening.

I returned to Ketchikan and we began emailing every day. His emails were hilarious! We talked quite a bit. Eventually, on October 22, I told him that I liked him and he said he liked me back. WHEW! I asked him if he wanted to be my boyfriend and he replied with something like, "I assumed I already was!" (He is very charming, really.)

He came to visit for my birthday that December, then I flew down to Oregon for New Years, and met his parents and family. Everyone was so nice! The problem was that he lived there and I lived in Alaska. One night I was house-sitting for a friend and he and I were talking on the phone like we did every night. I asked him if he would ever want to get an apartment with me and he said YES without hesitation. Wow!! (I had never lived with or considered living with anyone else. I really like being alone and being independent, so this was a Big Deal to me. I knew it was right when I realized that I actually wanted to live with Jonathan.)

I started going into major planning mode. I had achieved a lot of awesome stuff in Ketchikan. I was happy with my life there, but was ready for the next big thing. Luckily, Portland is like Ketchikan-in-the-Lower-48 and so I knew I'd be okay. I got rid of a bunch of stuff, moved into two smaller and smaller apartments to save money (all within one month - ugh), shipped a lot of stuff to Seattle on the barge, and got ready to move to Portland. I was working seven jobs at this point. Yes, you read that right. Seven. Depending on what day it was, I was always working my normal job at the coffee shop, but I would go and work another job after that job was over, whether it be cleaning someone's house, shucking crab, cleaning an office building, or dispatching at the fire department. I was busy and stressed, but I knew it would be worth it!

On August 16, 2008, I had a great last lunch with my awesome friend Brian (who took me to Cape Fox, where I had devil's on horseback - scallops wrapped in bacon! They are amazing.) and then I went to get on the ferry. It was a two night trip on the ferry to Bellingham. I read a lot, ate a lot of jerky, and took a lot of naps. Every so often I could go down to the car deck where Artoo and Halo were stuck in the car and let Artoo out so he could use the bathroom.

On the morning of August 18 we finally made it to Bellingham. When I turned my phone on (I had turned it off because I was going through Canada and didn't want roaming charges) I found out that one of my best friends had died. This was so incredibly hard for me. I still miss and love him. I had to keep going. I drove from the ferry terminal in Bellingham down to Portland, trying to beat traffic to have lunch with Jonathan. I made it just in time to see him on his lunch break. Afterward, I went to our new apartment that we had picked out on one of my previous trips to Portland.

It was official. On August 18, 2008, I started my new life in Portland. I am still loving it here, although I can't believe two whole years have passed! Every day is full of something new and wonderful and I'm really thankful to have friends here now that I can rely on. I'm already really thankful to still be in touch with my Ketchikan friends, because I don't know what I'd do without them. I love you all!

So tonight Jonathan and I are celebrating by riding our bikes to North, of course!

And that, my friends, is how this Alaskan girl came to be living in Oregon. 

Edit: Jonathan came home tonight and brought me presents! He had shown me this Poketo bag from Target and I loved it because I love anything birch! He also brought a Poketo keychain and beer!


  1. adorable! so happy that you live here now and I'm lucky enough to call you my friend. happy 2 years!!! oxox

  2. Hooray for 2 years!

    Though, you do have an important thing missing from your blog. Summer 2006 you did come to visit Holly...and watch me get married! DUH BRITTANY! Didn't you know important events in your life revolve around me?


    Seriously, so glad you live here.

  3. Becca, how do you know I don't have a "Top 10 Reasons Why I Love Becca" blog post I'm writing that's in the final stages of drafts and I wanted it to be a surprise?! GOSH.

    Yes, your wedding was so super awesome and I had a bunch of fun!

    Nicolle, I'm so glad you replied to my tweet about baked potatoes. BPP fo lyfe! (Best Potato Pals) (P.S. I can't wait to see you tonight! Crossing our fingers for no mosquitoes.)

  4. SO CUUUTE! And so cool that you have all those photos from the beginning!! Adorable and jealousy-inducing :) Thank you for sharing I loved reading it and I miss youuu!!

  5. Just too cute! I love the story and those wonderful pictures!! :0)