I love Portland. It's a community embracing individuality, creativity and sustainability. Grunge is still king and admittedly, it's difficult for me to tell the difference between the homeless bums and residents. In 36 hours here, the only time I saw people in suits was during lunchtime. Casual is the business dress, which works for me. People are genuinely nice and friendly.
Skateboarding is recognized as a mode of transportation and while most cities have biking lanes on their roadways, Portland has skateboarding and rollerblading lanes. There's also a hookup for electric cars to charge up for free.
Wednesday morning I left McMinnville and stopped at a couple of wineries while making my way to Portland. At one I got the, "You're brave to be doing this [traveling solo]." Stopped at a fruit stand for hazelnuts (which grow predominantly in Oregon) and whole wheat peach-filled fruit bars. Then it was Portland and off exploring the city.
My hotel has an excellent location, right on the waterfront with easy access to downtown. The Tri-Met, the transportation system, is easy to use but Portland's a great walking city. The weather has been unusually warm, in the upper 80s. I'm told normal temps should be in the 60s or 70s.
Yesterday was a walking tour with just four participants, curry chicken for lunch, a trip to Washington Park's International Rose Test Garden, brewery visit (9, four-ounce samples - oy!) and wander along Tom McCall Waterfront Park for the kick off of the Portland Rose Festival.
My sole Portland souvenir is a bumper sticker which reads, "Keep Portland Weird." Amen.
Heading to Washington today and Mt. Rainer. Am suppose to meet up with Yellowstone pal Jen on Saturday, who lives in Olympia, an hour from Seattle. I think it's been about 9 years since we've last seen each other.