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Day 9 – Portland

Today was another beautiful and fun-filled day in Portland. Sarah and Avery have proved to be some damn good tour guides (not to mention extremely accomodating and kind hosts). I can’t even begin to say how thankful I am that they have allowed me to not only crash at their place, but have also taken the time to show me some of the great things that Portland has to offer. Thanks ladies!

We all stayed up semi-late last night, kicking back and relaxing after a long day of drinking at the Brewers festival, so we got a bit of a late start this morning. After we were all up and showered, Sarah, Avery and I all headed over to their favorite breakfast food cart “The Big Egg” for one of the most amazing breakfast sandwhiches I have ever eaten in my life! I had their daily special which consisted of toasted Brioche, White cheddar cheese, scrambled eggs, black forest ham, home-made peach jam, arugula, and jalapenos. Words just can’t describe how perfect this sandwich was, even just describing it here is making my mouth water! I washed it all down with a glass of freshly made kombucha from one of the other carts and called it the best breakfast ever! Once again, I’d like to outline the love affair that I have formed with the Portland food carts. Not only is the food amazing, but the portions are not overly large, the price is low, and I really like the idea that a talented chef can open a small restaurant without having to have a huge overhead to purchase a furnish a brick and mortar shop. I think this is an idea that is well past its’ time and I hope that San Diego and other cities will soon follow suit.

With breakfast taken care of, we spent the rest of the afternoon tooling around a few of Sarah and Avery’s favorite neighborhoods, including the Hawthorne District and NW Portland. We checked out some cool shops, had some amazing tea (I had a glass of a pear black tea with a splash of mango lemonade that was to die for), sampled some ice cream at a small locally made ice cream shop (I tried the dark chocolate salt water carmel and the lavendar honey, again, amazing), and even stopped by the barber shop to get my mangy beard cleaned up a bit. I really enjoyed small and local feel of the various communities. There were a lot of very eclectic and artsy shops selling local wares, and everyone we came across was extremely friendly. At one point we stopped into a local bike shop so Avery could checkout a new frame, and I got a chance to see the (locally) infamous PBR bike! That reminds me, if you dig through my pictures, you’ll see a number of shots of billboards featuring artistic renderings of PBR cans in various locations. This seems to be a local obsession. I’m not sure who is paying for the ad space, but I have seen at least a half dozen of these billboard artworks throughout Portland, and from what I’ve been told there are a great many more.

Overall, I have had an absolute blast in Portland, and could definitely spend more time here (and hope to in the future). Tomorrow I plan to have brunch with my friend Victoria, who I haven’t seen in almost 10 years and as it turns out is currently living in Portland. After that its’ somewhat up in the air. My rough gameplan is to head to Olympia (about halfway to Seattle) and stay the night at the Motel 6, then push on to Seattle on Sunday and stay a few nights at a hostel up there. But like I said, it’s all sort of up in the air at this point…

So, what do you think ?