“So what’s your favorite state?” That’s the question I get asked all the time. My answer is always, “The states along the coast are pretty amazing!” Well, I spent the last three weeks in a pretty amazing state along the coast; it’s called Oregon.
I saw plenty of fog and clouds in Eugene, drove in a snowstorm over Santiam Pass, gazed at stars in the clear, cool nights of Bend, walked through snow on Mt. Hood, felt the wind and sideways rain along the Pacific coast, and even turned on the air conditioner in the surrounding countryside of Portland.
Oregon has some diverse climates because it is such a geographically diverse state. It has the rocky coastline, it has the more temperate rolling hills with vineyards, it has the snow-capped volcanic peaks, it has the high desert, it has the vast forests. Think of it as a smaller version of California, but without the smog, congestion, and high prices. And the people of Oregon love their beverages. I have never seen so many craft breweries, wineries, distilleries, coffee shops, and roadside espresso stands. It’s pretty much heaven.
But what’s the best part of Oregon? It’s the people. I met so many great people who instantly took me in as their adopted vagabond. Thank you, Rhonda; Scott and Kathy; Eric, Heidi, and the girls; Jill, Danny, and the boys; Ed and Meredith. And a special thank you to Laura and Kevin. They made me a birthday dinner, took me wine tasting, made me countless meals (and libations), took me on a mini-tour of Portland, and took me flying in their very own Cirrus! To all of you, thank you for making Oregon such a memorable place on my journey.