I have been a little discouraged to read some of the reviews on here. I suppose that when someone loves their city, they're less likely to take to the internet to tell about it (probably because they're out enjoying themselves). However, I'm considering moving closer to family and Portland seems like a great place. I'm originally from So. Cal. I hated the congestion and crime. I've also lived in the mid-West (cruel, harsh winters). Currently, I live in Dallas, TX.
Most of the reviews list the dreary climate as a huge negative. I'd like to hear from some people who don't really mind it all that much and how they go about mitigating some of the effects of seasonal depression. Yes, it's sunny in Texas, but most of the time it's either too hot or too cold to get outside and enjoy it. This year has been particularly bad with 30+ days of 105+ degree heat.
Someone here complained that Oregonians are not quick to be friendly and that the overall social climate is rather hostile. This is exactly how I feel about Dallas. It's really a melting pot so, the myth of "Southern hospitality" is just that - a myth. Since Texas wasn't hit nearly as hard as the rest of the nation, our real estate market is in a little better condition. However, we have had a HUGE influx of people from the coasts and over the last 2 years, prices have shot through the roof. I wouldn't mind paying 15% more in for housing if it means that there are things to do other than eat and shop! Not to mention, the school districts here are some of the worst in the nation and the homeless population is astounding.
Despite all that, I don't think Dallas is a horrible place to live and I'd choose it over most major cities. The question I'm trying to answer is even if I were making a lateral adjustment on the elements of crime, friendliness, real estate, homeless/unemployed statistics, and the cost of living...how gray is too gray to play outside?