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need advice from Oregon dwelling TCS'ers

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
I was going to wait to ask this until I got closer to my self-imposed deadline for things to come together here... but I changed my mind.

Okay, I curently live in Chicago. i love Chicago, but it doesn't love me. I've been struggling with job hunting for a year and a half now. Not even being REALLY picky about where I'm applying (exceptions are fast food and hard labor). An example: as much as I dislike retail, I've been applying like mad... with no luck. Barely even any interviews. So here's the possible gameplan:

I'm considering moving to Portland (or another part of Oregon... craving trees in a bad way). My lease here is up in August and I know the rent will go through the proverbial roof. Long story there... anyway... rents are mostly cheaper there and as I just said in the above parentheses, I've been craving trees in a big way. I've had local friends tell me we have trees here. My answer? THEY'RE NOT BIG ENOUGH! I grew up in the SF/Bay Area, close to Yosemite. I am a nature lover (well, except spiders, snake and ants) and as much as I love the convenience of livingn in downtown Chicago, my heart belongs elsewhere. My father has been helping me out financially, and we discussed me moving again. I decided on Oregon/Portland because of trees and lower rents.

Now, here's the thing: In order for me to move before my lease is up, i need a job there... so I can break my lease without a penalty... at least a big penalty. I can certainly wait until August as well. What I need is advice on neighborhoods in and around Portland. I have a friend who lived there about a decade ago... and even he acknowledges that things have undoubtedly changed there. Some rentals on Craigslist are saying they're petfriendly... and others, which usually are the ones I like, are not. I need a safe neighborhood. A clean place, preferably a townhouse style rental or just no annoying upstairs neighbors thumping around (I hate people who don't respect their neighbors) that accepts cats. I'm going to continue looking from here, but I don't have a clue about the neighborhoods.

Another thought is picking a town elsewhere in Oregon. My main priorities are that the local college has a decent grad program and I can find work. I like Portland because it has a city feel while being surrounded by nature. I LOVE that.

i know job hunting is tough (God knows I've done enough of it), and I don't expect miracles. I also don't expect any company to pay for my moving costs. I'm making this choice.

Any tips?

post #2 of 7
Amanda, I wouldn't move till you have a job. I would subscribe to several newspapers around here online and look over the classified ads that way. Albany Democrat Herald, The Oregonian would be two I would subscribe to. Also in Springfield they are currently building a huge travel center for the cruise lines that might be a possibilty.

I have a friend that moved her and her son to Eugene and they ended up having to go to another state to live after 8 months of not being able to find work. It is extremely difficult to find a job right now in Oregon, so please have one lined up before you arrive-

This link might give you some help
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the tips and the link. What I've noticed is that it's tough everywhere to find work. I have a penchant for moving without have a job, but I also know that it's easier to get work when you already live in the area.

I'm working on a possible method: get a part time gig here with a company (thinking retail, of course, since I'm not a corporate type) and then as I get closer to lease expiration, look at transferring to a shop with the same company out there. becasue I still need something here right now. Then once I'm out there, look for second jobs in fields where I'm educated.

I'm used to moving at this point. I moved from CA to Syracuse, NY, lived there for nearly two years, then moved here two and a half years ago. Cross country moving is not a huge thing, at least to me. it's all one big adventure.

post #4 of 7
I know it's a long way but can you manage to spend some weekends/vacation time there first? It is so much better if you have seen things and met people in your potential location.
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
I only wish... I'm broke and have been for months now. Also, no car (which will be remedied upon moving there... it's a weird situation), so I can't take a couple weeks and drive out there. If i'm fortunate to get a call from any employers I submit resumes to (sent one last night for an Editor/Proofreader position... i.e. NOT retail! YEEHAAW!) and they want me to come out for an interview, then i have a valid excuse to visit (can justify the plane ticket better). I did that in Vegas a year ago. Vegas in February is nice... I obviously didn't get the job (long shot anyway... but I tried) and spent a few extra days looking at apartments and gettingn a feel for the area. Granted, Vegas would still be in the running, but they are in a desert, and I didn't see many trees out there.

I was in Southern Oregon a few years back for an SCA event with a boyfriend at the time (what a shmuck he was) and knew that if the rest of the state was covered in that many trees, I'd love it. i was still in CA at the time and didn't have as much longing for nature as I do now. You never realize how much you miss something until it's not in your life anymore. I'm a photographer, with my 'idol' being Ansel Adams. I may never be as good as he was, but I can sure try.

If I get the chance beforehand, I'll certainly try spending some time out there.

post #6 of 7
What field of work are you in?
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
I'm looking at a lot of areas, but would prefer to be in editing/copywriting/proofreading or web work, which is what I do at home now. My home business is pretty much non-existent though. My posts here may not be perfectly edited (so don't judge my skills by them) but if someone's paying me to do it (or it's at least for a professional reason), I'm REALLY picky. I have a terrible habit of finding proofing mistakes in bestselling published novels... it bugs me. I can do, and have done extensively, retail and some retail management.

I am one of those creative dreamer types who doesn't do well in cubicles. I have a BA in English, emphasis on Creative Writing. But I'm also a photographer, web designer, maker of random stuff. I've proven that I'm a really good salesperson who doesn't shove sales down a customer's throat (no commission sales... I'm a Dolphin in Shark infested waters there), am really good at doing window displays, something I did at Papyrus. I simply want to do something that I enjoy, if not be passionate about, while having the time and energy to pursue my writing. As well as be among the trees.

That enough info?

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