Although not physically present in Port Townsend on a full-time basis (at least not yet), I find myself more and more feeling as if part of me never leaves. To the extent that colloquial labels are helpful in describing much, I will admit to being more of a “city boy” (as contrasted with “country boy”). And by “city boy” I mean, I enjoy being in large and bustling cities, especially Seattle, where I have lived most of my life. (The three years I spent in law school were spent in Madison, Wisconsin, a  city that reminds me of Port Townsend in many ways.)  But despite my enjoyment of city-life, I love being in Port Townsend too, a small town that has many of the qualities of a not-so-small-town, like great restaurants, a vibrant art scene, multiple book stores, and a diverse and interesting populace.

In many ways, Port Townsend is where I came up with the idea of being a legal artisan and not “just” a lawyer. I started visiting the area, staying at Chevy Chase Beach Cabins on vacation. I was working long hours as an attorney and traveling a lot, and I wanted someplace where I could getaway without getting on an airplane. Plus we wanted to bring our beloved dog Doyler with us for a “family” vacation. After a two years or so, we started looking at places to maybe buy so that we had a getaway that we owned. From there we got the idea of Port Townsend a second home. More to the point, though, I fell in love with the Farmer’s Market and all the local artisans that make Port Townsend such a great place. And because I was already interested in food and agriculture, from a legal and other perspectives, it occurred to me that Port Townsend would be a great place to start a new kind of legal practice: one based on being an artisan, and one that worked on behalf of other artisans. I would never have arrived at this place in my legal career had I not discovered Port Townsend. And for that I have Doyler to thank.

I have now owned a home here for going on four years. In the last year, I have started to meet more people, and become more a part of the community. As I described in a previous blog-post, I have become a member of the Jefferson County Local Food System Council, an effort that will be further up and running with our next meeting in late January. I am doing more legal work here, much of it pro bono (no cost), such as helping organizations file for 501(c)(3) non-profit status and advising some small businesses on liability risks. My practice in Seattle focuses mostly on representing persons injured by unsafe products, usually food, and my hope is that I can bring my decades of experience in accident and injury cases to the residents of Port Townsend. I am just as interested, though, in helping businesses avoid lawsuits. And I did spend my first half-decade as an attorney working on the defense side of things, and I have continued to consult in that area for years. In short, Port Townsend seemed to be a great home for me and my family, but also a great place to start to  grow a legal practice that might soon become full-time. I may not be quite ready to leave the “big  city” behind, but I am getting there–thanks to you Port Townsend.