|Portland, Oregon, my former home|
Photo by SoulRider .222
If you must live in the US, I would strongly recommend Portland because it's a lovely, quirky city and Oregon is a gorgeous state.
Some interesting historical tidbits: Portland used to have the second largest Chinatown in the US after San Francisco. Unfortunately, due to racism and claims that "their taking our jobs" (sound familiar?) many Chinese were forced out of Portland, often at gunpoint. Ironically, Portland has tried to win back some of the Asian trade it lost over a century ago, but Portland customs officials were known for being rather hostile towards asians, hampering the job (their was a significant shakeup at the Port of Portland a few years back to fix this problem).
|The Gates to Chinatown|
Photo by Doug Kerr
Interestingly, Jacob Vanderpool was well off. He owned a saloon, a boarding house and a restaurant. Where did he get the money to buy them? What happened to his property after he was forced to leave? I've always thought his story would make a great screenplay, but even though I searched through Oregon's historical archives about Vanderpool, I could never find more information about him.
Portland is beginning to develop a strong reputation (obviously, I feel it's deserved) as an independent, quirky city with its own "vibe". There's even a comedy TV series about Portland. Portland, and Oregon in general, are fantastic and I'm surprised (and pleased) to see them being celebrated here in Paris. I hope to have the time to see it. If you have to "get out" and move to the US, try Portland. You won't regret it.