After our rocky (newbie) start to the trip, we ended up in Portland, Oregon for two nights. The first night was spent in a Walmart parking lot (expect to see us staying here frequently), but the second night we splurged and actually stayed in an RV park! We learned many things during that night:
- How do you hook up the fresh water?
- How do you hook up the poop-er hose?
- What’s best – let the grey water or black water down the poop-er hose? (Answer: grey water)
- How do you get the microwave working so that you can warm up your coffee that has gone cold, whilst trying to figure out how to get the electrical power working properly? (Answer: use the 30 amp adapter)
- Can a grown man comfortably shower in our little bathroom? (Answer: Shower? Yes. Comfortably? Undecided.)
- How many times will you have to hit your head on the roof above the captains chairs before you will learn to duck getting into and out of the seats? (Answer: TBD. Heads getting sorer by the day.)
With that said, we are quickly becoming acclimatized to our new abode and falling into a routine similar to at home. Hubby gets the breakfast organized, wifey makes the coffee. The scenery may be different every day, but the same jobs get done.
So, Portland. What is it known for? It’s known as the place where young people go to retire. It’s known for its brunch scene. It’s known for its craft beers and local coffee roasters. (Maybe because the hipsters don’t work?) It’s known for its cycling commuters. Seriously, sign us up!!! On the first day, we found a parking lot that would accomadate Eddie. A slightly dodgy, Baltic-looking man took our money and assured us our vehicle would be in good hands until we returned a few hours later (he was, in fact, true to his word, and Eddie was okay when we returned – phew!) After finding a T-Mobile store to get get a new sim card for my phone, we headed across the street to Public Domain Coffee, a groovy little coffee shop that offered free refills.
After filling our boots with free coffee, we wandered around the downtown for a bit. Seriously, we were swooning with the bike lanes and the general atmosphere of the centre. These people love their bikes!! We found a busy little deli for lunch (we split a massive sandwich and a cookie for $7) and then decided to find a good micro-brewery in the area to pass the afternoon. A brisk 25 minute walk across the Hawthorne Bridge found us at the Lucky Labrador Brewing Company (you had us at “Labrador”!)
We sampled some fantastic local ales. In particular, the Black Lab Stout and the Blue Dog Amber Ale, were high on our “favourites” list.
On the walk back to Eddie, we stumbled upon this local institution. We couldn’t resist. The donuts fuelled the gridlocked journey back to the RV park.
The second day, we decided that we wanted to find a good place for brunch and do a bit of cycling. We ended up going to Toast for elevensies. The food was spot on, and the area in Portland was cute and scenic.
After brunch, we pulled our bikes out of the RV and set off on a lovely 25km cycle along the Willamette River. It felt great to stretch our legs, and, seriously, these Portlandier’s have a great perspective on cycling in a city! Bike lanes on every street, well-maintained cycle paths, lovely scenery to gaze at… all good! It didn’t hurt that the temperature was nearing 20-deg celsius… 🙂
Before heading out of town, we stopped in at Hopworks Urban Brewery, another local craft brewery recommended by our Brunch waitress. We ordered a sampler tasting of their brews. The craft beers that ended up being our favourites were the Army of Darkness, the Kronan and the Nitro English Session Ale.
And that marked the end of two great days in Portland! After getting a shower at a local community centre and finding a good cup of coffee, we began our 3-hour trek toward Smith Rock…