Half an hour later, the bottom fell out and, soaked through the skin, we high tailed back to Hood River. The rain we were attempting to avoid from Portland made it's inevitable way east. As we sipped on some hot tomato soup back in town, dry cloths on our backs, we considered what life was going to be like in Rip City. We'd started the discussion on our next move many months ago and after whittling down our options from about five different cities, Portland seemed like the clear choice. Following my training camp in Tucson, we decided to meet each other at an Air B&B in Beaverton for a few days. I had an interview lined up and Kinsey was keen on scoping out some potential neighborhoods; after all, we'd be moving from Fairbanks in just two and a half short months.
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The clear June sun turned the car into a sauna seconds after I killed the engine and turned off the A/C. Our campsite in La Pine was a deadzone for our phones so in order to make a call, one had to travel half a mile down the road to get service again. Perhaps by design...
It had been nearly four months since my interview in Portland and by all accounts, it went very well. While it wasn't exactly the line of work I had studied for, it was something I was very excited about and wanted to find out when I could come on board. During our long road trip down the Cassiar in May, I had a brief phone call with one of the men I interviewed with and was ready to follow up. Beads of sweat coalesced into long drips I could feel crawling down my neck while I carried on another conversation with my would-be employers. In their current state, they could not tell me when they would have a position available for me. In short, I was told not to wait on them if I had another opportunity. I tried not to dwell on this prospect too much this week since we were in town to race Pac Crest in just a few days.
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During the six hour drive back to Ocean Park, our summer home of 2017, it was clear to both of us that our Father had other plans for us than Portland. While we were optimistic in March, some realities started to settle in the more we thought about it. Aside from both of our potential jobs falling through there, we agreed that if the cost of living didn't do us in, the traffic and wet bike riding would. The last 10 days we spent around Bend were pretty rad...although people don't move there for jobs, they move their to retire or to settle on lower paying jobs for the sake of the outdoors. It didn't quite seem possible but I couldn't let the idea go. I submitted my first resume before we finished unpacking.
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After a six month mini retirement with more traveling and racing that I ever thought we could fit in, we were both ready for some real work. While I wouldn't say we were altogether idle over the summer, or productivity for any given day amounted mostly to the number of meals we created and devoured with some occasional house work.
Following a string of ups and downs, I miraculously got a call back from the most exciting (in my mind) company in town. While I've written about that experience before, looking back on the year, that was easily the most unexpected answered prayer, maybe of my life. I anticipate the next trip around the sun to bring even more. Dreams we didn't know we would have a year ago have come true, though not without a fair amount of trepidation. The way God has carried us through our trials, joys, and everything in between continues to amaze me. I only hope I can learn to get myself out of the way of His plan more often than not.