Summetime is different in Portland.
Portland, Oregon is known for rain and clouds. This is no different than the rest of the Pacific Northwest. What may surprise many is that we do receive sunshine here, and temperatures of above 90 degrees. Sure, this may not be the norm, but as I near the end of my second summer in Portland, it seems about normal to me.
I almost do not remember the rain. I love it, though. I love the scent and feeling. Much like Taylor Swift, I like the way the street looks just after rain. I love the low-hanging gloomy clouds, and the sharp bite of the cold in winter. In the winter, I miss nothing. In the summer I miss the winter.
Streets crowd with tourists, which fills me with a pithy anger. I am just trying to get to where I need to go, as you slowly meander the narrow sidewalks, three people wide. Maybe my anger stems from jealousy – I have traveled so much in the years leading up to this one, and this year has been mostly lived in one place. My airplane rides have been as minimal as the money in my bank account. Not likely, though, as I really do love this city, and constantly find ways to explore and travel in the place I live.
It is a local joke that Summertime in Portland starts the weekend of Fourth of July, and ends sometime around Labor Day. By local joke, I mean that it is true but mildly funny to anyone who has lived in any other place because it is strange to get use to not having sunshine in June. Oh, another local joke: June-uary. It is a lot like January, but in June.
In a few weeks, my beloved clouds will return, the much disliked tourists will slowly fade away and life will return to some semblance of normal. Already, I am beginning to see plans for Corn Mazes, Pumpkin Spice Everything and Halloween/Thanksgiving.
I wonder if I have missed something. I wonder if I have overlooked something magical about summer in-between nights laying in front of my fan while staring at the weather forecast and days sweating as I walk to work. I wonder if maybe I should try to slow down a bit more, I wonder if maybe, just maybe I should live more for the moment whether or not I love the temperature.
Summertime is almost over in Portland.