The blog post about selling my American collection of stuff (shit) got a little long, so this is the part b to finish it.
5 weeks of digging out and getting ready to sell the American Dream. I really wanted my friends to get some of my stuff, but that said, I was now selling to anyone with the money. SALE DAY
When my Grandfather passed away my Grandmother gave me his collection of woodworking tools. I proudly used them in several different craft business’s. The tools enabled me to become quite an accomplished woodworker, thanks Grandpa and Grandma. The tools were the best type inheritance anyone could receive.
I tried to sell stuff during the week and the next weekend, but it cost more than I received in sales. I set a table on the street covered with stuff. I came home and everything was gone-including the table. When I came inside the house I found a note from someone who took the table and said I could call him if I wanted the table back. Nice.
The consumer economy of America is a the biggest hoax being played on Americans. When you buy something new, the value is only in it’s use for you. The idea of receiving any value for something you bought new is a joke. Your lucky to get maybe 10% of what you paid. I will only shop at estate sales in the future, there are some great values to be had.
After selling everything I stopped by Steve & Kimberly’s house,
I ASKED KIMBERLY WHAT WAS THE FIRST THING THAT STARTED THIS MESS, HER RESPONSE WAS “THE DAY WE BOUGHT THE SHED”
The American appetite for more and more materialism is just plain and simply: UNSUSTAINABLE. I wish I knew how to slow it or for that matter stop it.
THIS IS EVERYTHING I’M BRINGING BACK TO SLOVENIA: ROCK COLLECTION, ART AND SOME CLOTHES.
I still regret selling my Grandfathers tools, that was probably the hardest thing I had to do. But that said, what a relief to have cleaned up my past in Portland and prepare myself for my future with Natasa in Slovenia.
NEXT: post about the 4 vacations around Europe, one an epic solo bike tour.
I “invented” my first bike BackPack from an old hiking pack when I was 16. When all my friends were getting their driving licenses, I was learning to bike tour. Biking gave me the freedom to go where I wanted-when I wanted. The car keys in my house, came with so many stipulations, biking was a better option.
I moved to Portland in 1974 by train and brought my bike with me. It wasn’t much of a bike city back then,.The city hired a full time Bike Program Manger in 1993 and since then bicycling has been given some budget priority.
I started a free bike lights program called Get Lit, for which I received a BTA Alice Award. I was also volunteer of the year at the Community Cycling Center. Bicycling has been in my blood for a long time and Portland was the perfect bike city for me.
In 2002 Portland hosted “Bike Summer” which helped kick start Portland’s love affair with Bike Fun. Everyone had so much fun that SHIFT and PEDALPALOOZA were created. Then in 2005, Jonathan Maus started the “BIKE PORTLAND” website. He did a story on the history of what helped Portland to create it’s Bike Culture.
I was lucky enough to be in Portland for this years PedalPalooza bike events. In the past I hosted, Bike to Skate, the Oxbow Campout (an introduction to bike touring) and co-hosted with Jill, The Dandy Warhol’s tour of Portland.
PedalPalooza culminated with the Multnomah County Bike Fair, Which really celebrated Portland’s Culture of BIKE FUN.
Some photos ofThe Sprockettes performing before hundreds of spectators. I always thought the bike jousting was a little dangerous, but always a crowd pleaser.
I received a grant to offer low cost helmets and lights and had a booth at the event, promoting what I thought was important-Bike Safety.
Portland’s best bike event by far is SUNDAY PARKWAYS and I was lucky enough to participate in 2 of them, while in Portland. It’s an opportunity to walk, run or bike Portland’s streets without cars. It’s a great event too, because it’s the one event in Portland that doesn’t have beer as the main ingredient., it’s all for the love of walking and biking.
These are some photos from this years Pedalpalooza kick-off ride.
Portland’s bike community wants you to do “everything” by bike.
Pedalpaloozaz’s most attended event for riders and spectators is the WORLD NAKED BIKE RIDE. Why ride Naked? The worldwide bike ride highlights the vulnerability of cyclists everywhere and decries society’s dependence on pollution-based transport. It’s also a lot of fun and it’s free for all!. I rode the first WNBR in 2004 and hadn’t ridden one since, Why? I have no idea. But since I’m moving, I thought this would be a great event to participate in.
My camera lens was dirty and I didn’t have a T-shirt to clean it, so my photos were poor to bad. They estimated there were 10,000 riders.
The streets were lined with spectators and their cameras
if you want some more WNBR photos try HERE
Pealpalozza ends again with the Multnomah County Bike Fair, but it doesn’t quite match the effort from years past. But I had a windup bike toy I’ve wanted to give to Dingo the Clown for 5 years and I thought he would be there.
Sorry for the delay in posting, but Portland and my commitments ate me alive. I’m back now in Skofja Loka, Slovenia with my wife and couldn’t be happier. Since I’m now living in Skofja Loka, I had to return to America for a major house clearing. I had to sell everything I own, tools, vehicles, household goods, art, basically a lifetime of possessions. It’s one thing to have an Estate Sale after you’ve passed away but it’s another thing-if your still alive and watching your life go out the door. But it’s more than the stuff I’m parting with, it’s goodbye Portland and goodbye friends. The next several blog posts will be about all of these things. There has been some laughing, some crying but no regrets. I’ve lived in Portland Oregon for 35 years, had several business’s, volunteered a lot, organized community events, was involved in a political campaign so my network was large and I was well connected in the community (maybe not always well liked?) In this blog I’ll be looking at Portland’s uniqueness & quirkiness. If you live in America, you probably move to Portland. My move to Skofja Loka enabled me to live the life that Portland yearns to be. I just don’t have the 20 years to wait for Portland to actually close it’s first street to cars. I now have: a car-free walk able town square., bike friendliness, 3 days a week farmers market, great bus & train opportunities and I have them today. Oh yea and a super wife too! I’m living the dream here in Skofja Loka, Slovenia.
Portland is a clash of values, there’s healthy local food then there’s VOODOO DONUTS. This is a must visit when you come to Portland, if anything just to see how many people line up for their doughnuts (don’t forget it’s deep fried sugar).
Marijuana was made legal in Oregon while I was there. For years “Medical” Marijuana had been available with a “medical” card.
There must be a lot of sick people in Portland, there are “clinics” everywhere.
Portland is also known for it’s love of Cats and Dogs, Portland has the most animals per person than anywhere in America.
Portland’s Food Carts are world renowned and hugely popular. It offers an opportunity to nearly anyone with the imitative, to start their own business. The variety of world taste is more than you can imagine. This is a part of Portland I’ll miss, though somewhat unfair to brick and mortar restaurants, who must provide amenities like handicap bathrooms.
One food cart I discovered this time was Rahel’s Ethiopian Food.
The food cart pod , CARTLANDIA is just off the Springwater Bike Trail offers a huge selection of international food. My new favorite and a must visit if your in Portland is RAHEL’S ETHIOPIAN FOOD. It can be as spicy and as vegetarian as you like or add some lamb or chicken. I had the lamb and it was very good and tender too.
Gang violence has been erupting all over Portland, but mostly in the North and Northeast. The Alberta Last Thursday Art event had a shooting last month, but since I’m leaving soon I thought I would take a chance at having one last look before I leave.
Thanks for letting me share some of Portland’s uniqueness and quirkiness. There really is only one city in America like Portland and it’s definitely Portland.
Were just weeks away from opening our own AIR B & B apartment in the old town of Skofja Loka. Mark your calendars for a visit.
Until Next time,