All cheesiness and fluff aside, today was an extremely interesting day. The first half of our journey began at the BPS center, where, after much difficulty, we were split up into 6 separate groups. Then, with our cameras and our hopeful spirits by our sides, we collectively left the center and made our way into the city. With the help of a dozen guiding questions, our groups investigated six different aspects of the Portland Metro Area, and through our investigations we tried to gain an understanding of the roles that these aspects played in making the city function. After many pictures were taken, many notes were written, and many snacks were purchased, we headed back to the center to reconvene. Shortly after, we made our way up to the 7th floor of the building, where we were greeted by a couple of really nice people. For the 2 and a half hours that followed, we were hit with a barrage of information regarding the inner workings of our city.
As I walked out of the building at the end of our day, I felt a bit confused on the inside. I wasn’t sure what to make of what had happened, and I felt like I was missing some big idea that everyone but me had understood. However, as I made my way up towards Fat Straw on 23rd, everything started to make sense. I looked around me, looked at the Max train passing by, at the park across the street, and the overpriced Starbucks around the corner, and I started to think back to what we had learned during our meeting with the nice people at BPS. I now understood that everything in our city had a purpose, and was there because some person had a vision, spent time planning this vision out, and went to City Council to bring this vision to life. And, with this newfound knowledge, the whole city started to seem even better than before.