One month from tomorrow, I go back to Oregon. I'll have been gone nearly three months. As much as I've loved this internship and enjoyed Washington, I can't wait to go back. I'm getting really psyched.
The thing I miss most? My cats. If I'd actually moved here for good, they'd have come with me. I'll admit that wanting to get back to my pets is driving me to think of other things I miss about home. But mostly, it's the cats. I know that many of you are thinking to yourselves that I'm going to become a crazy cat lady, and you're probably right. But those cats are my buddies. I miss having them around. I miss all of my human friends too, but at least I can talk to you guys on the phone.
I may have mentioned before that I've found that the things that are exciting about visiting a large city (and really, Washington isn't that big. Its population is comparable to Portland's.) are the things that make me miss smaller cities. There are too many buildings and not enough large expanses of grass (my roomie, who's from a small town in Texas and lives in South Carolina now, agrees with me on this point). Maybe in part due to the differences between the East Coast and the Pacific Northwest, there is just too much going on. It's a very chaotic, fast-paced life here and while it's exciting for a while, there are times when I feel a tad suffocated by it. I want to go lie under a tree in a park and read a book and just listen to birds instead of traffic (of course, who would want to spend any more time than necessary outside in this weather?). I enjoy it, but I'm much more laid-back than this town seems to allow.
I miss having a yard. While the stoop outside my house is a good place to people-watch (and occasionally even catch a glimpse of a Congressperson or two), it certainly doesn't offer the privacy of a yard.
I miss privacy in general. As much as I enjoy the public transportation here (and would totally use it for everything but grocery shopping if I lived here permanently), it's just one more time when you're surrounded by people. I love Washington because of its diversity, and I hope to one day live in another place where there are so many different types of people. I just wish I could get the diversity of the population without the sheer number of people. A city the size of Eugene with a population as diverse as Washington's would be perfect for me.
With three roomies in my two-bedroom apartment, huge crowds on the subway at least one way of my daily commute, there's never any privacy. At home, at least I know that I'll have time to myself in the drive to and from school. The cubicle at work is more private than home in many ways. The problem isn't that I don't like being around people. I love being around people and in general, don't spend much time totally alone. I hate living by myself. But I like to have the option. Sometimes I just want to walk around singing really loudly, listen to music that I don't want other people to hear (see one of the embarrassing confessions in my post from a few days ago), eat gross food without other people knowing, etc. I can't wait to get back to my house in Eugene and sit alone in my own bedroom (with the cats, of course) and watch stupid TV by myself without having to talk to anyone about why I like some stupid shows.
Finally, I can't wait to start my new job at the school paper. I'll be the Freelance Desk editor and I have some exciting ideas about how to go about getting the best stories out of my writers. I've also got some ideas about things I'd like to write while I'm there and I can't wait to get back. I've only got a few more months (two terms) at that paper, and I'm going to miss it. I think there are some good things I can do. When the time comes, I'll keep people posted on what those ideas were.