I'm in Oregon on business. I have been here three times before, and until the last trip, I would have said that Eugene reminded me a lot of Austin (outside of the obvious ways that Texas is not Oregon). That is SO not true. The people here are fine, and it is beautiful (and a brisk 58 degrees right now) but this particular work project has been pretty brutal from day one for me, so I'd be dishonest to say that I had warm fuzzy feelings about this place. I will be really glad when I can see the fruit of all my labor.
I'm taking my own advice and trying to maintain a positive attitude, though. In effort to do so, I've been thinking about what I do like about this town. There are people barefoot, with dreads, in trees... but they don't look at me so spitefully as long as I've got my TOMS on.
1. The coffee. There is a FABULOUS company here called Dutch Brothers Coffee. They have little huts all over town that you can drive through or walk to... it's delicious coffee. And you know how I feel about my coffee.
2. I appreciate the gargantuan efforts this region - while hit extremely hard in this economy - has made toward sustainability. It's not hard to do EVERYTHING locally here, and I think that's awesome. I hear they have a really stellar open market on Saturdays where local food vendors come out in droves with their fantastic fares. I'm bummed that I won't be here on Saturday to experience it.
4. There is a restaurant on campus here called Glenwood's. It's very Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives. It's in an old house and their menu changes depending on the season and what's available locally. They have the MOST.STELLAR. eggs benedict.