Category Archives: Good Isness

Dear Portland,

Dear Portland,

Dear Portland

I know we’ve only just met, but I felt compelled to tell you that… I like you. I’m sure you hear this all of the time, but you’re gorgeous. I knew you were cool the moment I arrived and the only available car to rent was a Subaru. (And, only because all of the Prius were booked). I feel like I’ve met a kindred spirit. I don’t mean to be so forward, but your bicycle-friendly streets & bridges had me longing to explore your mountainous terrain. What a breath of fresh air you are! Literally.

Oh, how I like you. Let me count the ways…

Portlandia

You are sexy.
With a statue depicting a woman of strength and grace, perched upon the Portland building as a welcoming beacon, I must bow to you.

You make me laugh.
You gave us “Portlandia” the web series! I couldn’t resist driving by the “Feminist Bookstore”, In Other Words,  where many hilarious episodes have been filmed. I’m going to tell you a secret. Please keep this between us. I got a little fan-girlie over coming across the set of “Portlandia” while stopping by Laughing Planet for my new favorite Thai Bowl. I would cartwheel across St. John’s Bridge if I could work on this web series for even one episode.

You smell good.
So many coffee houses. So little time.
Coffee House-Five, Barista, Stumptown = Yes.
Your Rose Garden made me blush. So much beauty.
And, Forest Park, with over 5,000 acres of forest for hiking & biking & play. I got my Zen fix walking through the Japanese Garden. How many gardens do you have, anyway? I know Multnomah Falls isn’t exactly your territory, but it’s such an easy visit. I hiked a mile up for a spectacular view of the Gorge and was back to you in twenty minutes.

Rose Garden sniff

You taste good.
Your food was delicious. You knocked my knee socks off with Veritable Quandary. I can’t remember the last time I had such an exciting, exquisite meal. Loved the patio seating, too. Tasty n Alder had a sweet, family vibe. The large tables with tons of small plate options was a sure friend-maker. And, Peteunia’s gluten-free, sugar-free bakery. Need I say “yum”? A true success story of food cart to full store-front. Although, I’ve always heard of you as having vegetarian-friendly restaurants, I did notice that many of your menus boasted of bacon. You even had a new restaurant called “Lardo“, which seems to be all about consuming bovine, swine, & beer. Not really my thing, but I won’t hold it against you.

You are so gay.
Happy and righteous hipster lesbians (being walked by their dogs) sporting Icebreaker, knee-high socks, Doc Martens or clogs. You hosted this year’s Women’s Lesbian Softball “World Series”. Delta Park had five softball fields packed with us. What a treat!

Rose City Rollers 1

You’re feisty, diverse, and smart. You know how to play.
From Roller Derby to the Portland Art Museum to a demonstration on the front walk of City Hall, your city is full of spunk, politics, and forward-thinkers. While strolling your Pearl District with the best Stumptown coffee in hand after a fine breakfast at Kenny & Zukes, my heart nearly skipped a beat on the intersection of 11th and Burnside St. There, I stood between Icebreaker store and Powell’s books. Add to that a nearby bike shop with its own espresso bar (West End Bikes). Is there anything you haven’t thought of? I was impressed with the Rose City Rollers, btw. Those gals give good game. And a teammate named JK Rolling? Brilliant! Insane!

You’ve got personality. Multiple personalities, in fact.
I should tell you a little about myself to make clear what an impression you’ve made upon me. I’m an artsy, outdoorsy, get-gussied-up & act classy type. It doesn’t always mix well, but with you it was a breeze. I was also pleased to know that no matter where I bedded down, you managed to impress me with your dynamic character.
*Funky, musical, & hip with a touch of scandalous: McMenamins Crystal Hotel Resting at The Crystal
*Arsty, communal, & whimsical with a touch of eery: McMenamins Kennedy School
*Classy, upscale, intelligent, with a touch of modern: Hotel Modera
Please know that I don’t normally sleep around, but how can a gal really know her fit without a little experimentation?

I want more of you.
Rows of charming Tudor homes on Mississippi Ave. had me dreaming about a life with you. I promised myself that no matter how much I liked you I would not Uhaul it this time. But, I must admit I’m already planning my return. There is so much more of you to explore. I long to feel your fall & winter vibe. After all, I wouldn’t know you as Portland without a little rain, right?

Until we meet againThank you for the memories.
Your admirer,
~Traci

Bookmark and Share

Becoming Captain Snorkel~Diddie

Becoming Captain Snorkel~Diddie

Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/kflickin/tracidinwiddie.com/wp-content/plugins/nextgen-gallery/nggfunctions.php on line 554

 

 

 

I distinctly remember the day my Aunt pushed me into a crashing wave on the shores of San Diego to “remedy” my intense fear of the ocean.  I was 4 years old, and my very young parents had just been divorced.  My mom took custody of my little sister and me, and joined the Airforce in her best effort to take care of us.  Unfortunately, it meant that I had to stay with my relatives while she endured boot camp.  Of course, I misunderstood and thought my mom had left me.  I was devastated and began to develop a fear of practically everything in the midst of this separation anxiety.

The ocean, in it’s mysterious, overwhelming power, terrified me. Needless to say, my Aunt’s push didn’t help.  It only led to my choking down what seemed like a gallon of salt water in between panic-stricken sobs that would later have my little face purple with broken blood vessels. I felt betrayed by my family and violated by the Mother Sea. Lost in my own abyss of hurt, I carried this insult with me for way too long.  It took many years of troubled living to sort out my messy pile of resentments. Like waves of the ocean, hard lessons would come crashing into my world as I chose to act from fear instead of love.  Miraculously, a breaking point occurred in 2000. My first step was made toward true healing as I entered sobriety.

I had a badass of a spiritual mentor who put me on a fast-track plan of brave actions.  She insisted that I learn how to swim- literally. Desperate to feel better, I followed her directions with vigor. Every day, for several months, I took to the shallow lane at the YMCA. To my surprise, I became a fairly decent swimmer. My inner mermaid was ignited!

In my second year of sobriety, a few close buds and I created our own mini-triathon. The Southeastern coast of North Carolina was fierce that afternoon, but I was determined to follow through. Something happens when you hit a tipping point.  I was done relinquishing my life to fear. I plunged into that water and sliced through the charging waves with all of my child-like might. Halfway through the swim, I nearly fainted as the chop kept tossing me around. My swim-mate grabbed hold of me, and we took it slowly, together, the rest of the way. Key word: together. My soul opened up to community – a new family of my own choosing, and I found that I never had to face my fears alone again.

Flash forward to my 11th year of sobriety as I snorkeled for the very first time on a Sweet trip to Isla Mujeres, Mexico.  It couldn’t have been a *sweeter* experience. My Dear One witnessed my initial head-duck into the water as I squealed like a giddy little girl.  The reef was alive and dancing with spectacular color. I had never seen anything quite like it before. This was the beginning of a whole new chapter in my life. Since then, I’ve explored The Great Barrier Reef in Australia, and just recently (& quite reluctantly) returned from 20 magical days on the Big Island of Hawai’i.  I am a changed woman. From a frightened little girl to Captain Snorkel~Diddie, my courage outweighs my fears today!

Feel free to peruse my photos, (taken by my brand new Coolpix underwater camera) and bare witness to the glorious sea-life of Hawai’i! If you need some help in planning YOUR snorkel adventure, I strongly suggest www.bigisland.org.

Captain Snorkel~Diddie

The big Island of Hawai'i is THE place to get your snorkel groove on! Check out bigisland.org to make your own snorkelicious adventure dreams come true!

210 Photos

Also, if you want more tips on some of the BEST of the Big Island experience, be sure to look for upcoming articles in Curve magazine!

Sweeties, be sure to hit up Babs, aka Ms. Bomb Diggity, to schedule a snorkel outing with me while in Cozumel.

Shout out to United Airlines! They have a brand new direct flight from Los Angeles, Ca to Hilo, Hawai’i.  Less time in the air & MORE magnificent time in the water.

NEXT WEEK: I’ll be posting Part Two of “Becoming Captain Snorkel~Diddie” with video footage & more lessons from the Mother Sea.  Stay tuned! xoxo, ~t

 

 

 

Bookmark and Share