I've been living in my new nest in Eugene, Oregon for a month now, but things have only recently settled down enough for me to check in about them.
First, the big drive from San Diego to here: very beautiful, though very loooooong. I wish I could have afforded the time and funds to spread the trip over more than four days, so that I could have spent more time stopping to smell the roses, and had less grueling sessions on the road. I did get interestingly random glimpses of various towns whenever I stopped to refuel vehicle or driver, such as the funky convenience store in Bandon that sold fishing and gold-panning gear as well as cappucino with your biscuits and gravy. But mostly I was rolling, trying to get to that evening's stop before nightfall ... and sometimes failing, damn those still-shortish February days. (You can see a few photos from my trip here.)
Settling into Eugene: it took a little while for me to adjust to the environment, which was colder and wetter than I recalled -- or perhaps Eugene's spring-transitional weather is even wackier than Seattle's; or maybe it's just that my blood has been overly thinned from a decade in balmy Southern California. Evidently my immune system is not used to the local Eugene bugs either, because the very first thing I did after arriving in town was to catch a nasty cold. And there have been other weirdnesses too -- like the morning after the Spring Equinox, when we woke to an extremely unusual six inches of snow on the ground; or the morning after that, when the melting snow overwhelmed our already rain-sodden yard, resulting in a little flood in the basement room where I am currenty residing. But the flood waters receded and my little nest dried out, so now I am back in it.
And all that precipitation does mean that the Eugene area is lushly green. It's a small town, so it only takes a few minutes' driving in any direction to be in either verdant farmland or mossy woods. I'm looking forward to seeing those fields and forests get more actively springlike. Meanwhile I am being charmed by Eugene's small-town-meets-hippie-mindset funkiness. Since I am currently living in the Whiteaker, the town's acknowledged hippie neighborhood, the funk is front and center in my street and house and everything. But there are splashes of funkitude even in the most non-funky locations, such as the bright-yellow-painted Thai food stand I found nestled among auto dealerships and strip malls the other day.
Still have a lot of exploring to do, but initial phase of relocation can be definitely hailed as a success. Now to just hang out in this new berg and see what kind of trouble I can get myself into.