Everyone in Portland looks like they're on drugs. Everyone in Portland listens to Neil Young in restaurants and says Thank You when they exit the bus.
Before I flew out I made the supremely fucking stupid mistake of getting my hopes up, which resulted in...a very innocent nothing, which of course ended up feeling like a very severe everything, because that's what happens when you hope as hard as I did/do. Honestly will I ever learn? I am 27 years old and I haven't learned a damn thing. I will not learn. I am cement. I don't make progress, I just develop cracks. And so I felt especially thankful for a 3-day escape to a shiny (and rainy) new place.
The strange thing about Portland is that before I went I felt like it was somewhere I could just move to and be happy forever, and now that I've been there I don't feel that way at all. It was fun and really refreshing, though. What a perfect little bundle of poorly labeled streets and lush greenery and regular drizzle. For some reason I was expecting it to remind me of London, and it did not. It reminded me of a cleaner, more artistically and culturally relevant Buffalo with better public transportation. And no Polar Vortex.
By the time Morales and I landed at PDX at 11am we were starving, so we dropped our bags off at our airbnb apartment and went on our merry way. Our merry way ended up being Bridges Cafe and Catering, which is where I had this Bloody Mary that is, so far, my favorite that I've tried.
After we left Bridges we went to Powell's and got lost in 25,000 floors of every book ever written. I put at least 5 books back while I was searching, and walked up to the counter with $70 of books in my hand, still debating on what I could give up. I only spent $38, and so we rewarded ourselves with Voodoo Doughnuts, because doughnuts should be a reward for every kind of success in my opinion.
Sunday morning we woke up ready to eat, drink, and explore, so we put ourselves on the list for brunch at Tasty N Sons and the 45 minute wait allowed us some time to walk down Williams St until we found Eat, a New Orleans-style oyster bar that had live jazz. We decided we were brave enough to try the chili-infused bourbon oyster shooters, which were so spicy that I cried. The build-your-own Bloody Mary bar was great, but a bit too Worcestershire-y for my taste. The bartenders were beautiful, friendly men that ended up singing songs from School House Rock with us. Conjunction junction, what's youuur fuuunction :)
Brunch at Tasty N Sons ended up being one of the best meals I've ever had, if only for my 3rd Bloody Mary - the Belladonna, that just tasted like blended green peppers and THE BEST DESSERT EVER. I ordered Vanilla Panna Cotta with Rhubarb Caramel and it was life changing. Morales ordered a fucking waffle sundae. On top of the omelette and the pan full of potatoes and eggs. On top of the drinks/oysters we had while we were waiting for our reservation. I don't think I've ever been so full in my life.
We explored the Kennedy School for a while after that, and ate & drank some more, cause why not? And then we ate Italian food, cause why not again? By the time we should have been ready to go out that night, we were basically hungover (lol) so we just gave in and went to bed at 10pm and I enjoyed my book of Kurt Cobain's notebook pages that I bought at Powell's.
Our last day gave us a little break from the rain, so we went back downtown and got coffee at Stumptown and then spent a solid amount of time in Jackpot Records, which, for its tiny size, had a faaantastic selection. I found Santana's Borboletta album in perfect condition for 4 bucks. We tried going to the Tardis Room (We are both Doctor Who fans), and made the long-ish trip to a somewhat isolated part of town, only to find it closed. Not a total loss, because on our way back to the yellow line we stumbled upon a ZINE SHOP (how the fuck does a zine shop stay in business! I can't even fathom their sales vs the cost of having a shop) and I walked out of there with 6 zines for $10; one of which was a 50 cent, 4 page booklet called "Freaky Lisa Frank" that just has drawings of bunnies next to meat cleavers. I love Portland.
Necessary trip. Last year we did Vegas for Cindy's birthday, this year Portland...next year NEW ORLEANS? EUROPE? ROSWELL NM? ...Kansas?
My own birthday trip this year will be back to London, as the Young Vic finally announced dates for A Streetcar Named Desire with Gillian Anderson playing Blanche. When I got back from the UK last year I bought a theatre membership and paid for my ticket in advance, so all I had to do was pick a date and smile when they told me I had a front row seat. I'm adding Paris to the itinerary this time and I caaaan't wait. Plenty of time to save and plan! Happy Birthday to me, indeed :)