My answer to this question is usually simple: Portland. Whenever I go to a Highland Game or to the Oregon coast, this is all the answer I need to give, because people immediately know where I'm talking about. And yes, people at the Highland Games know where Portland is even when we're in Seattle or all the way up in Canada.
But of course if I travel to some places, I need to specify what state Portland is in. That's to be expected when I travel far from home, like to Hawai'i. But I don't expect it in my own state!
This is something that I didn't share about my trip to Ashland. I guess I didn't share it because there was so much to share and I preferred to share other stuff. But right now there isn't enough to write about, and this still seems funny, so I've finally gotten around to it.
Ashland isn't shown on this map. This particular map only shows the big cities in Oregon and Washington, and I chose it because all the other maps were confusing to look at...at least, they seemed that way to me. Anyways, Ashland is in the southwest corner of Oregon. More south and more west than Crater Lake.
So now that you know the lay of the land, let me add in this extra detail: roughly half of the population of Oregon is concentrated in the general Portland area. So I don't think I'm being conceited when I expect all Oregonians to know about Portland.
And yet, when I told the people in Ashland that I'm from Portland, they asked "Portland? Where's that?" The two words "northern Oregon" were all they needed to hear to suddenly remember Portland, but I was still weirded out.
Have you ever had a similar experience?