Wednesday, December 19, 2012

An Unexpected Complication...OR How I Became Temporarily Homeless

In terms of dirtbagging, I had it all. Lot's of friends with warm homes and spare couches or bedrooms, a nightshift job that was just mind-numbing enough to dream about kayaking during the whole shift and left the days free to actually go kayaking, and even a family I didn't owe any real responsibility to.
And that's the best kind of family...
Kate Daniel Photo
(Also, apologies to my real family...)
What could possibly go wrong?

 It all started a few days ago.

I was informed that circumstances would no longer permit my very pleasant accommodations in the Woodstock neighborhood of SE Portland, an unpleasant but not unexpected development. In a desperate attempt to prove I was incapable of being trusted to my own devices, I cut my finger deep enough to see a vein while moving a refrigerator. It didn't work. The reasons for my eviction seemed reasonable enough though, and the wide network of friends in the region would surely step in to fill the position of "host." If my position should then be described as "parasite," it should at least be noted that there is a symbiotic relationship occurring, because, as expected, a number of hosts seemed to spring up.

The obvious selection was Gus'. Not only was there a big room, short commute, and high tolerance for smelly kayak gear, he has a cool ass name. In truth, the large majority of potential hosts were from college students leaving for winter break.
Presumably to act grinchly towards younger siblings...
With such a wide and undoubtedly reliable selection of new homes, it was hard to conceive something going wrong. Especially in the early morning haze preceded by 18 or so hours of consciousness, the latter half of which were spent carting children's toys unnecessarily back and forth in a store. I should add, the term "concious" is used in the loosest sense. 

Anyways, unacknowledged by me, the options trickled subtly away.

Benny left, Cat left, Harrison might (?) still be around. The day came for me to move out far too soon. I found myself experiencing some moderately significant anxiety as I packed up the car again. There was a distinct feeling of "not-good-ness" settling in the pit of my stomach which I attributed this to one too many redbulls throughout the night. 

After an ashamedly short drive to Gus' I hopped out of the car and confidently entered the passcode on his garage and twisted the handle.

Nothing happened.

I repeated the code 3 or 4 times, occasionally cursing, because cursing usually helps in these situations. So I called Gus, worried I'd have to admit I forgot the code. Turns out, I had it right, the door just needed to hear me admit I could be wrong (kinda like some of the girls I've met), because it started working as soon as Gus told me the code I was using was correct.

Things were looking up. I got to chat with Gus, it didn't sound like I woke him up, the door was about to open, and I'd continue living the dirtbag's dream. Except it still wasn't opening. And to be honest, I've sorta put off sharing this detail, because it's a bit incriminating.

That handle I twisted in my initial attempts actually sent a deabolt into the frame, effectively sealing me out. The poor automated door opener's engine whirred and cranked (repeatedly), now so desperate to allow me inside where moments ago it had stonewalled me.

It continued to strain against the deadbolt for the duration of my conversation with Gus which involved 2 near circumnavigations of the house, searching for an option that would allow the entering part of breaking and entering without the breaking part. It actually continued struggling to open well beyond my discovery that these college students had been surprisingly responsible when they headed home for break.

Ultimately, it stopped though.

Then it started to snow, a rare occurrence here in Portland.

So I went back to Kate's and did the first thing anyone in my position would do. Told facebook I was homeless.

Thanks to Cat, I'm not homeless anymore, and now I get to tell people I'm in a much better place now than I was yesterday.

Happy Holidays Everyone!

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About Me

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I am a freelance writer and photographer, collector of experiences, adventure lover, and outdoor goer.