Sunday, October 2, 2011
I'm usually disappointed by talked-up places when I finally see them in real life. But Portland has been an exception. It's funny to think that I have been against traveling within the US and then this summer took me to Phoenix and Portland. The states have proven to me that domestic travel does have it's thrills.
Portland is a fun mix of creativity, random nooks and transplanted people. Nearly everyone I've crossed paths with is here from somewhere else. Many have just moved here. That has made it a pretty approachable city for me. People are really friendly and kind. The fashion sense is quirky and individualized, so it's not intimidating. It seems that most people are trying to establish themselves- so it's like the first week of college- everyone meeting each other and open to new friendships.
Visited McMenamins Kennedy School last night for dinner and drinks. I loved the whimsical air of the school converted to restaurant, theater, pool and community center. I stopped in to several more of the McMenamins locations and all of them carry elements of a child's fairy tale. I love children's books and young adult novels (Newberry award winners) so I was in love with the McMenamins settings right away. I quickly found out the couple I went out shared similar tastes- and we talked about The Fall, Pan's Labyrinth, The Brothers Grimm and other stories.
I stopped in a bunch of little craft boutiques and picked up some letterpress cards at Powell's bookstore. The hostel I'm staying is a great old victorian home (bottom left picture in collage). So I will leave here tomorrow with plenty of inspiration- and hoping that I can come back, maybe to live!