The Internet is flooded with blogs. Everyone has something to say these days that they feel is important enough to broadcast to the world. One can’t help but wonder, what’s the point? Why does one blog in a sea of others mean anything more than the next? Is it all just an insignificant gathering of words? Here I am, a 20-something-year-old woman from the Golden State, and I am now, on this great day of July 8, 2011, deciding to begin my own blog to add to the masses. So, before I can truly begin, I feel I must answer the ultimate question: Why is this blog of consequence? My answer to this is that perhaps, in the grand scheme of things, it’s not. Perhaps, this blog is simply my inconsequential Internet legacy, my pursuit to uncover beauties, explore forgiveness, manifest love, and nourish the soul through personal anecdotes, occasional rants, and eloquent descriptions of the people and places I meet. To whom this blog is meant to be of consequence, it will be just that.
My blog is titled Rough Outlines because, despite some seeing my staunch quest for never making set plans as, in fact, concrete planning, I dislike the idea of set in stone plans, no-wiggle-room directions. They terrify me. I like to think of myself as having wings on my feet with the ability to fly to new places and meet new people at any given moment. This lust for travel is not just to distant lands, but also within the place I reside. I love nothing more than random adventures that end up finding the perfect park, pizza, or bakery that I never even knew existed, right around the block.
Even as I write this first entry, I am sitting on the porch of a little café located in a small mill town just outside of Eugene, Oregon. It is my first time here and the café looks more like a grandmother’s house open for tea and crumpets than it does your typical coffee shop. It is a gorgeous, blue sky, sunny day and the seat I have chosen for myself is surrounded by hanging pots of pansies, many shades of pink and red roses, and the type of greenery that exists in the world simply to make places look more delightful. A flag reading, “Welcome,” above a picture of a yellow teakettle covered in red hearts, stars, and cherries and full of flowers adorned with happy honey bees, waves in the mild breeze.
The tiny staff seems to genuinely care about me and my well-being, checking on me from time to time after ordering my chai and panini (both of which are delicious and soul nourishing, but I’ll get more into my passionate relationship with food another time). The panini came presented on top of a doily, which then laid on top of a decorative little plate, rimmed with shiny gold and covered in old-fashioned patterns. I could not ask for a happier environment than this in which to write.
Now, how all of this links back to how this rather long paragraph began is that I would never have found this place if it hadn’t been for me and my boyfriend previously going on an adventure to find a U-Pick strawberry farm. We began with an idea in mind and then adventured our way to this adorable little town. Rough outlines begin with ideas, thoughts, general visions of something you’d like to do, see, experience and then they end with an exciting journey through the many pieces that actually put together what happens. Rough outlines are directions without a map. Rough outlines are my preferred way of life.
In exactly one month from today, I will be starting my new job in the D.C. metro area. I will have already moved to the other side of the country and hopefully into a lovely new rental (please cross your fingers for me on that part). In short, I am absolutely terrified, but I am also incredibly excited and feel very lucky to have graduated and then gotten my first job in my exact field of interest. I am wholeheartedly passionate about ending homelessness and poverty in the United States, which is another topic readers of this blog can bet on hearing more about. Starting next month, I have the opportunity to put this passion into action, fulfilling a yearlong fellowship with a nonprofit serving individuals and families living in poverty in our nation’s capital. For the next month leading up to my departure, readers can expect this blog to be largely focused on writing my love letter to the Pacific Northwest, a region I will tremendously miss.
In light of acknowledging this ever ticking clock, I will now wrap up my first Rough Outlines post, so that I may go breathe in the air, put my feet in the soil, and make sure that I have just enough Pacific Northwest printed within my heart before it is time to hit the road.