Well, I guess it's been a long times since I've written a blog post. I was kind of busy this summer, in case no one noticed. And then I decided to switch jobs and move to Hermiston in the midst of it all. Fortunately the move didn't take me outside of Oregon, so I didn't have to start paying sales tax or learn how to pump my own gas or any of those other weird things people in the rest of the country do. Still, moving anywhere is an adjustment, and since I've moved I've made the following observations:
1) I don't know what the people who laid out Hermiston were thinking, but it wasn't "Let's design a town where the streets actually make sense." I was 20 minutes late to church the first Sunday because when the directions said go up Highland and take a right on Ninth Street it never occurred to me that there would be more than one Ninth Street in town. I didn't want SW Ninth St., I wanted SE Ninth St. which runs parallel to SW Ninth on the other side of town. Also not to be confused with SE Ninth Drive, which later becomes NE Ninth Street. And streets with names like Ridgeway and Gladys have a habit of ending every couple of blocks and then picking up in a different place farther down and sometimes changing their name altogether from one block to the next. Needless to say, I now own a GPS.
2) I seem to be the only white person living in my neighborhood. I saw one the other day but she was holding a slip of paper and looking with confusion between two buildings so I don't think she lives around here. I don't mind, and my neighbors are nice, but it is weird getting all of my junk mail in Spanish.
3) Everywhere I've lived, people complain about the exact same things. Does anyone anywhere not think there is "nothing to do around here?" It's funny because as a reporter I talk to a lot of people about the town they live in, and when I was in The Dalles and I started telling sources I was moving to Hermiston they would say "Oh they're really thriving. I wish our downtown was growing like theirs." And then I moved to Hermiston and told people I was from The Dalles and they were like "Oh The Dalles has such a nice downtown. I wish ours was like that."
4) After spending time in several Hermiston schools I now understand why their sports teams look so horrified at the facilities in The Dalles. Not only do they have really nice classrooms, they also have amenities like a cafeteria and a parking lot.
5) My hair doesn't like Hermiston. I didn't think it could get any frizzier, but alas, I was wrong.
6) Living by yourself has a lot of benefits. You never have to worry about someone else using up all the hot water, or not disturbing anyone when you come in late, or whether there will be enough room in the freezer if you buy a second flavor of ice cream.
7) Living in the same town as a Wal-Mart is awesome.
8) Moving away from my family and all of the people I grew up with and the masses of people who say things like "I need to find someone to be in charge of that. You know what? Jade would do a good job," so far means I have a lot more free time now that I'm settled in. So that should mean more time for blogging.