Sunday, February 08, 2009

A Day of Apartment Hunting

I spent the day looking around the Goose Hollow area, which is on the western side of downtown, right next to the hills.

The western hills are beautiful. I passed some time hiking in them the last two weekends, and the neighborhoods up there feel a lot like being in the hilltop residential sections of San Francisco. Lots of very nice old homes built along small narrow streets. They have the added bonus of being set in the midst of a dense Northwestern fir forest with plenty of views of downtown and the surrounding volcanoes. Everything is mossy, green, and misty up there.

Positive aspects of Goose Hollow itself: The neighborhood has everything I need within a ten minute walk. Bookstores, grocery stores, and movie theaters, as well as dozens of non-chain restaurants, coffee houses, and bars. From gelato shops to Korean food, it's all there. The Max train lines also run through the neighborhood, and it's a five to ten minute walk to the heart of downtown, which is contains whole 'nother universes of cultural stuff to see and do. Walking to university should take fifteen to twenty minutes, without being lazy and taking the street cars.

This structure and its adjacent sister apartment buildings are very nice. They may not have much in the way of views, but they were all built in the 1920s and are absolutely gorgeous on the inside. They have wooden floors as well as Art Deco fittings and other period architectural flourishes. Also, since they were erected before inexpensive oil or central air and heating, they have thick, insulating walls that make heating or cooling their apartments cheap.

I also took three hours out to go and see Coraline. The movie was a local production, made here in Portland, and at the end, the audience cheered and clapped. It was obvious that most of the people in the theater knew someone who had worked on the film. Also, several members of the production crew were there with their families, so there were a lot of interesting conversations to listen to as we left the theater.

Back on the subject of apartment hunting. 

This place is down on the outskirts of Chinatown. How cool would that be, living there? I nearly moved into here when I first came up last year. Only the monthly cost of parking for the car deterred me, and now, obviously that's not an issue anymore.

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