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Flothera

Portland, OR

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Turkey
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I hope this is the right forum for this. Any current residents in the Portland area? Any information to give about the city? If all goes well with the K-1, I'll be moving to Portland from Istanbul... a little worried about adjusting, when it appears I'm moving from such a chaotic, overwhelmingly crowded, noisy city to one that seems to have transformed into the idea of a "green haven" for residents of bigger cities. And I've heard a LOT of stories about the treatment Californians/New Yorkers get over there %) And Powell's plus the strip clubs, but that's pretty much all I know about the area so far...


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I live across the river in southwest Washington and I really like the PDX metro area. Not sure I'd live in Portland proper though.. some areas aren't particularly safe and if you have kids, the school system is hmmmm

Why Portland? Does your spouse live there now? And have you visited before?


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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Turkey
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I live across the river in southwest Washington and I really like the PDX metro area. Not sure I'd live in Portland proper though.. some areas aren't particularly safe and if you have kids, the school system is hmmmm

Why Portland? Does your spouse live there now? And have you visited before?

Yeah, he lives there. And nope, I haven't visited. And having a LOT of doubts, probably mostly due to that fact. :/


K-1 - California Service Center

2010-03-04 - I-129F Sent

2010-03-05 - NOA1 Notification on USCIS Website

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Turkey
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Yeah, he lives there. And nope, I haven't visited. And having a LOT of doubts, probably mostly due to that fact. :/

Portland is a beautiful City! My wife and I live just up the Freeway in Seattle. She is also from Istanbul. There is so much to do if you like the outdoors, great shopping malls and just about anything you want. We often will go to Portland for long weekends and to just relax. As far as crime goes, it is a "metropolitan city" for American standards. There will be no more crime in Portland than Taksim at 2:00 AM. Please let me know if you have any other questions. Good luck on your journey!

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Turkey
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Portland is a beautiful City! My wife and I live just up the Freeway in Seattle. She is also from Istanbul. There is so much to do if you like the outdoors, great shopping malls and just about anything you want. We often will go to Portland for long weekends and to just relax. As far as crime goes, it is a "metropolitan city" for American standards. There will be no more crime in Portland than Taksim at 2:00 AM. Please let me know if you have any other questions. Good luck on your journey!

Thanks for the info! :) Do you know how frequent/diverse "events" are in Portland? Is there a large enough international crowd, perhaps in PSU something? All I keep hearing about is the rain and the "outdoors"... the green and the common use of bicycles seems great, but is that ALL that there is to do? If you know about this stuff, at least... a resident would probably be able to give a better idea about everyday life. Has your wife had any trouble adjusting to Seattle?


K-1 - California Service Center

2010-03-04 - I-129F Sent

2010-03-05 - NOA1 Notification on USCIS Website

2010-03-08 - NOA1 "Notice Date"

2010-04-14 - NOA2 Notification E-mail

2010-04-20 - NOA2 Hard copy

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Filed: Other Timeline

The easiest way to induce stress is to drive a car through Istanbul. The easiest way to get better is to take a walk though one of Portland's parks. How's that for a comparison?

Edited by Just Bob

There is no room in this country for hyphenated Americanism. When I refer to hyphenated Americans, I do not refer to naturalized Americans. Some of the very best Americans I have ever known were naturalized Americans, Americans born abroad. But a hyphenated American is not an American at all . . . . The one absolutely certain way of bringing this nation to ruin, of preventing all possibility of its continuing to be a nation at all, would be to permit it to become a tangle of squabbling nationalities, an intricate knot of German-Americans, Irish-Americans, English-Americans, French-Americans, Scandinavian-Americans or Italian-Americans, each preserving its separate nationality, each at heart feeling more sympathy with Europeans of that nationality, than with the other citizens of the American Republic . . . . There is no such thing as a hyphenated American who is a good American. The only man who is a good American is the man who is an American and nothing else.

President Teddy Roosevelt on Columbus Day 1915

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Turkey
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The easiest way to induce stress is to drive a car through Istanbul. The easiest way to get better is to take a walk though one of Portland's parks. How's that for a comparison?

Some of us actually like our cities crowded and busy. :) I can see your point since my hometown had plenty of that to offer, but in comparison, I can't help but go for the first, ignoring how dense the population is... In any case though, I'm not in any way trying to take what Portland has to offer in terms of a green environment for granted, quite the contrary, but just curious about what *else* there is. A bit clueless.

At the very least we could celebrate public transportation, both in Istanbul and Portland's cases ;P


K-1 - California Service Center

2010-03-04 - I-129F Sent

2010-03-05 - NOA1 Notification on USCIS Website

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Ecuador
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I visited Portland for a week in July 2002. My short pants never left the suitcase. I was told that their "summer" occurs a couple of months later than it does in regular places.

I also heard -- IF I remember correctly -- that there are restrictions on road construction, which hampers commuting. I could be confusing this information with someplace in California, but perhaps natives will confirm or correct this dim memory.


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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Belgium
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Hi,

I live in Portland and it's a fun place to live.

Comments about Portland being unsafe are fairly ungrounded. I think you'd be hard pressed to find a much safer city. I'm not aware of any places that need to be avoided.

As for activities, events, ... It would help if we knew what you're looking for? There's certainly a lively music scene, arts scene, lots of bars and restaurants. There are festivals and such too, but again it would help to know what makes you happy!

People talk about "community" a lot over here, and there is some reality to back up all the talking.

The weather : the amount of rainfall is much exaggerated. This is mostly the fault of the natives, who use complaining about the weather as a way to bond. There's certainly appreciably more sun and less depressingness here than in Seattle (I've lived in both places). Nevertheless, winters are fairly grey and (imo) depressing. Summer means 2-3 months of no rain and temperatures of 80-90 degrees - perfect for me. Spring and Fall are variable seasons, where you can have hot, cold, and wet in one day. The rain that we do get is what makes us not look like California (ie green instead of brown). Personally, I'd love to be migratory and live in Portland April-October, and somewhere south November-March :).

By the way, you will find that locals ###### about the weather all the way from the Canadian border to somewhere around the OR/CA border ... It must be traditional or something, it doesn't seem to depend on what the weather is really like :).

The roads aren't in the greatest condition. Highways etc. are fine, but the small, residential streets can have serious potholes. I don't ever go downtown in rush hour unless it's really important, but most of the time, traffic is much more bearable than in many big(ger) cities. Luckily, there are many bridges across the river.

You'll be fine when you make it here. Try to arrive in Summer for optimal first impressions.

'Kay, that's enough :)

Kevin

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Hi,

I live in Portland and it's a fun place to live.

Comments about Portland being unsafe are fairly ungrounded. I think you'd be hard pressed to find a much safer city. I'm not aware of any places that need to be avoided.

As for activities, events, ... It would help if we knew what you're looking for? There's certainly a lively music scene, arts scene, lots of bars and restaurants. There are festivals and such too, but again it would help to know what makes you happy!

People talk about "community" a lot over here, and there is some reality to back up all the talking.

The weather : the amount of rainfall is much exaggerated. This is mostly the fault of the natives, who use complaining about the weather as a way to bond. There's certainly appreciably more sun and less depressingness here than in Seattle (I've lived in both places). Nevertheless, winters are fairly grey and (imo) depressing. Summer means 2-3 months of no rain and temperatures of 80-90 degrees - perfect for me. Spring and Fall are variable seasons, where you can have hot, cold, and wet in one day. The rain that we do get is what makes us not look like California (ie green instead of brown). Personally, I'd love to be migratory and live in Portland April-October, and somewhere south November-March :).

By the way, you will find that locals ###### about the weather all the way from the Canadian border to somewhere around the OR/CA border ... It must be traditional or something, it doesn't seem to depend on what the weather is really like :).

The roads aren't in the greatest condition. Highways etc. are fine, but the small, residential streets can have serious potholes. I don't ever go downtown in rush hour unless it's really important, but most of the time, traffic is much more bearable than in many big(ger) cities. Luckily, there are many bridges across the river.

You'll be fine when you make it here. Try to arrive in Summer for optimal first impressions.

'Kay, that's enough :)

Kevin

Thank you! That seems very informative. I meant music/arts mostly with events. Being that I'm currently pondering heavily on how to arrange my work shifts to suit the intensive gigage schedule that's going on in the next few months in Istanbul, I would really love to have that as a problem there as well :P Though I think as long as there isn't just one or two major events in the city per year, and I'm not really having a hard time finding somewhere that's open past 10pm, I'll be fine. "Community"?

And the comments about crime make me giggle, given where I'm from. It's probably one of the most chaotic "planes" to find, there's NO telling what might happen the next second.

The weather seems to go by as "10 months of rain, 2 months of breezy summer". I guess I can't know without experiencing it first hand...


K-1 - California Service Center

2010-03-04 - I-129F Sent

2010-03-05 - NOA1 Notification on USCIS Website

2010-03-08 - NOA1 "Notice Date"

2010-04-14 - NOA2 Notification E-mail

2010-04-20 - NOA2 Hard copy

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Comments about Portland being unsafe are fairly ungrounded. I think you'd be hard pressed to find a much safer city. I'm not aware of any places that need to be avoided.

Guess my impression is based off what I read on the news. Shootings, robberies, murders, etc. Probably no more than what you'd see in any other US city I suppose... but I'm just happy to live close to Portland without having to live in Oregon


DCF Timeline here

POE Timeline

08/24/2008 POE Seattle

08/29/2008 SSN assigned

09/08/2008 SSN (Card) received

09/29/2008 Green Card received

I-90 Timeline (USCIS error)

11/10/2008 Send I-90 to Texas service center

12/xx/2008 NOA1

01/07/2009 Card production ordered

01/14/2009 Card mailed

01/xx/2009 Card received

I-751 Timeline

06/02/2010 Send I-751 to California service center

06/04/2010 Received at CSC

06/07/2010 NOA1

06/09/2010 Check cashed

07/27/2010 Biometrics

07/28/2010 Touch

09/02/2010 Approved

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Belgium
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Hi Kaffy & Flothera,

I've only lived here for less than 2 years so my opinion may not be the best ... But I do ride my bike and walk all over town including late at night. I've lived in North Portland, which many people here think is badass ... I'm not sure why. Maybe because much of Portland's small ... (gasp!) black population lives there?? I understand it was a bit rougher fifteen years ago, but Portland is so popular (more and more people move here each year although the economy can't keep up with them) that all of the "center" (we're talking many, many square miles here) has become somewhat gentrified and every neighborhood has been improved and looks fairly decent. Maybe you can still find scary stuff out in the suburbs and "satellite towns"; being European, I can't stand American suburbs, so I don't go there.

My only personal experience with crime is that my bicycle was stolen one night. (Fortunately, I got it back. That's a whole story in itself.)

We do have a pretty large population of bums. (The PC word is "transients", these days. Which is a strangely inaccurate term, as most don't seem to be going anywhere.) I've never heard of anyone having real problems with them, but it could make someone uneasy to walk by a group of them when they've set up camp for the night or so.

If you are a musical omnivore (like different styles) and if you like live shows, you will have no problem filling your agenda here.

Many of the festivals are held outside the city in beautiful locations.

Oh, and here's to your original post : Americans LOVE foreigners. You will not get any of the rubbish that Californians might get for crowding the unspoilt PNW (Pacific Northwest). You will be adored, hit on, talked to, and generally treated with lots of interest and admiration in any thinkable or unthinkable situation. Before long, you will grow weary of telling genuinely fascinated people where you're from, and of hearing it's so cool that you're from wherever you're from when they don't have a clue of what where you're from is like. You will entertain plans to have t-shirts printed that read "Yes, I'm from X. YES, I KNOW THAT'S SO COOL. Have a wonderful day, too." You will get hit on four times as much as your new American friends even though they're just as hot as you are. (Portland standards of hotness are not on the high end of the scale, by the way.) You will start to understand why Americans think Europeans are rude (they're right), and at the same time, you will occasionally crave rudeness. (You get used to the inexhaustible friendliness after a while. I promise. You'll even start to mean it when you say "Have a nice day!" to everyone and their dog. And when you go back to Europe, you'll find service inexplicably rude everywhere and will think things like 'good thing they don't work for tips here!', but you'll still feel bad about not tipping the customary 15% ...)

As for the stripclubs - apparently, we have laws permitting to show full nudity, whereas many other cities don't allow this. I've been only once and had a good time - meaning it was not creepy or yucky, and hardly cost more than going to a bar for a drink. I haven't been in Europe, but I imagine it might be different. It also doesn't have much of a social stigma here. (I have 2 friends who work as strippers, and no-one simply seems to care much.)

Man, I never meant to write this much, but here it is anyway :)

Remind us of when you'll arrive here?

Kevin

PS I hardly follow the news here ... American media are generally so incredibly bad (with a few exceptions - since I live in Portland, I obviously *have* to like DemocracyNow and such (not that I listen to it, liking is sufficient ;-) )) that I ignore them. I find British newspapers are a good source of information : the British are still so obsessed with the US that they write about it more than other countries, but the news is much more neutral and truthful than American media. I did read the NYtimes for a while and it seemed okay, but then I noticed how they write the same stuff over and over again, and I got tired of it. I'm glad to not care about the frantic politics of the day anymore; I do like to read up on 'slower' publications, like an article in The Sun or The New Yorker, or something like that.

Edited by kevinj

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Belgium
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Guess my impression is based off what I read on the news. Shootings, robberies, murders, etc. Probably no more than what you'd see in any other US city I suppose... but I'm just happy to live close to Portland without having to live in Oregon

I see that you live in SW WA, so probably in a more rural area that would indeed be a lot safer than any city? Lucky you, there's so many beautiful places out there that would totally be worth living in.

Then again, I think Vancouver WA would be a little too calm and quiet for the OP ;-)

take care,

Kevin

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Turkey
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Hi Kaffy & Flothera,

I've only lived here for less than 2 years so my opinion may not be the best ... But I do ride my bike and walk all over town including late at night. I've lived in North Portland, which many people here think is badass ... I'm not sure why. Maybe because much of Portland's small ... (gasp!) black population lives there?? I understand it was a bit rougher fifteen years ago, but Portland is so popular (more and more people move here each year although the economy can't keep up with them) that all of the "center" (we're talking many, many square miles here) has become somewhat gentrified and every neighborhood has been improved and looks fairly decent. Maybe you can still find scary stuff out in the suburbs and "satellite towns"; being European, I can't stand American suburbs, so I don't go there.

My only personal experience with crime is that my bicycle was stolen one night. (Fortunately, I got it back. That's a whole story in itself.)

We do have a pretty large population of bums. (The PC word is "transients", these days. Which is a strangely inaccurate term, as most don't seem to be going anywhere.) I've never heard of anyone having real problems with them, but it could make someone uneasy to walk by a group of them when they've set up camp for the night or so.

If you are a musical omnivore (like different styles) and if you like live shows, you will have no problem filling your agenda here.

Many of the festivals are held outside the city in beautiful locations.

Oh, and here's to your original post : Americans LOVE foreigners. You will not get any of the rubbish that Californians might get for crowding the unspoilt PNW (Pacific Northwest). You will be adored, hit on, talked to, and generally treated with lots of interest and admiration in any thinkable or unthinkable situation. Before long, you will grow weary of telling genuinely fascinated people where you're from, and of hearing it's so cool that you're from wherever you're from when they don't have a clue of what where you're from is like. You will entertain plans to have t-shirts printed that read "Yes, I'm from X. YES, I KNOW THAT'S SO COOL. Have a wonderful day, too." You will get hit on four times as much as your new American friends even though they're just as hot as you are. (Portland standards of hotness are not on the high end of the scale, by the way.) You will start to understand why Americans think Europeans are rude (they're right), and at the same time, you will occasionally crave rudeness. (You get used to the inexhaustible friendliness after a while. I promise. You'll even start to mean it when you say "Have a nice day!" to everyone and their dog. And when you go back to Europe, you'll find service inexplicably rude everywhere and will think things like 'good thing they don't work for tips here!', but you'll still feel bad about not tipping the customary 15% ...)

As for the stripclubs - apparently, we have laws permitting to show full nudity, whereas many other cities don't allow this. I've been only once and had a good time - meaning it was not creepy or yucky, and hardly cost more than going to a bar for a drink. I haven't been in Europe, but I imagine it might be different. It also doesn't have much of a social stigma here. (I have 2 friends who work as strippers, and no-one simply seems to care much.)

Man, I never meant to write this much, but here it is anyway :)

Remind us of when you'll arrive here?

Kevin

PS I hardly follow the news here ... American media are generally so incredibly bad (with a few exceptions - since I live in Portland, I obviously *have* to like DemocracyNow and such (not that I listen to it, liking is sufficient ;-) )) that I ignore them. I find British newspapers are a good source of information : the British are still so obsessed with the US that they write about it more than other countries, but the news is much more neutral and truthful than American media. I did read the NYtimes for a while and it seemed okay, but then I noticed how they write the same stuff over and over again, and I got tired of it. I'm glad to not care about the frantic politics of the day anymore; I do like to read up on 'slower' publications, like an article in The Sun or The New Yorker, or something like that.

You're awesome! What you've said so far actually makes me *want* to go and see the city instead of doubting the move. And I want to hear that bicycle story, if you don't mind o_O

erm... and yay for the strip clubs. :hehe:


K-1 - California Service Center

2010-03-04 - I-129F Sent

2010-03-05 - NOA1 Notification on USCIS Website

2010-03-08 - NOA1 "Notice Date"

2010-04-14 - NOA2 Notification E-mail

2010-04-20 - NOA2 Hard copy

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