Greetings from Portland! I am on the last leg of my trip, and Portland is the perfect place to spend it. I have two sets of fabulous friends here; I have known my friend Sarah since 6th grade and now she lives here with her boyfriend, Alex (there are a lot of Alex’s in my life!) My friend Morgan I have known since high school, and she lives here with her husband, Mark. Sarah, Morgan and I were on the staff of our high school newspaper together, so it’s a fun group of people to have together.
Currently, I’m holed up in a café called Fresh Pot, drinking a fantastic cup of spicy mint tea. I love when café’s offer loose leaf tea and give it to you in a pot; it tastes so much fresher. It’s quiet in here and everyone on a laptop has a Mac – I think I’d fit in here.
I arrived in Portland on Friday morning and headed straight to Powell’s to get some work done. I love visiting Powell’s even though I am trying to buy fewer books (I have a large collection already, so I’m making the library my friend instead). The number of books that exist to be read can overwhelm me a bit, but also reminds me how much there is to learn!
Friday afternoon and evening were relaxed with us just hanging out at Morgan’s until everyone got off of work and we grabbed some pizza and ate some bomb-ass oatmeal chocolate chip cookies that Morgan made. I wish I had photos, but my hands were too busy shoveling cookies into my mouth.
I spent the night at Sarah and Alex’s, and Saturday morning we wandered around their neighborhood before going for a 6.5 mile run. Sarah, Alex and Morgan have both run half marathons so they are great resources for me while I’m in training. Sarah, Alex and I rocked the run in the rain – for the most part it was just drizzle so it was actually quite pleasant. I forgot how much more fun running can be when you’re with other people! I like my solo runs, but the time and distance seems to fly when I have friends with me.
We met up with Morgan and Mark for lunch at the Grilled Cheese Grill! It was a grilled cheese restaurant and the seating was in an old school bus!! The inside was painted funky and covered with terrible high school pictures. The sandwich was pretty good, but the tomato soup really stole the show. Yum.
From there, we went to the Modern Craft museum where they had an exhibit that showcased different forms of putting books together. In an age where we are moving more toward e-readers and digitial media, it was interesting to see how creative people have been with putting books together and how it impacts the reading experience.
We explored a bit more and then went over to Mark and Morgan’s for a low key dinner, more homemade cookies, and a fun card game called “Wizards.” We hung out and traded terrible college roommate stories before heading home to crash out.
Sunday morning, Sarah and I went to a great hot power vinyasa class at an ultra fancy studio in the Pearl District. It felt great to stretch all the muscles that had tightened up from running the day before. We picked up awesome pastries at the Pearl Bakery and then headed out to explore waterfalls!
I’ll let the pictures explain themselves; they were so beautiful and epic. Getting close to some of them was like walking into a hurricane – we got very wet., but that’s what raincoats are for!
We enjoyed a delicious picnic lunch in the rain, explored some more and then went home to make homemade bread, salad, soup and apple pie for dinner!
After an intense game of Jenga, we all got ready for bed as it was Sunday night and most of them have work today! I also have to do some work today, but will get out and explore more this afternoon.
Portland is amazing, but I will admit to having a touch of homesickness now. I am approaching having been gone from Alex, the cats, and my home for two weeks and I’m ready to be back wandering the streets of San Francisco. I have had such fabulous hosts, that I only even notice in the quieter moments of the day, usually the mornings and the evenings. But it’s perfect, because that means I will be happy to be home when I get there. There’s nothing like being away to appreciate what you have at home, and I will fully admit to needing a reminder. But until I get back, I plan on finding more fun in Portland!
See you soon, guys!