My sister was in town so we had to try each beer at Hopworks as she had not been there yet. Also unsurprisingly got burgers, which she declared amazing too.
Took a walk along the waterfront to get a good walk and go to Pendleton to pick up a shirt for Brian. Instead of taking a picture of the beautiful Willamette River, I took a picture of this graffiti instead.
Also admired Tesla, which I would love to own at some point.
On Sunday, we went hiking for about nine miles on the Twin Tunnels Trail. It was a good hike with many beautiful things to look at as you walked. It was a pretty easy walk because there wasn’t much elevation gain (although if I was on a bike I’d’ve died, it was slow and steady gain).
Formerly, the trail was the historic Columbia River Highway. The new highway is below this (Hwy 84). This section had been shut down to cars and people for years. The tunnels had been filled, and it was unused. Just recently, the tunnels were cleared and it has been restored to be a place for biking and hiking.
According to Portland Hikers, these windows in the tunnel are called adits. They also close and lock the tunnels at night to protect them from graffiti. Well, and also to protect the graffiti from graffiti:
In the 1920s, some teenagers got trapped in the tunnel during a freak snowstorm for eight days. One of the ways they passed the time is carving their names into the side of the tunnel (and after a few days, it had to be so that they’d be identified too). Very cool to see. There’s more of it, but it was really hard to read after nearly a hundred years so I didn’t try to take a picture of it. It was pretty hard to notice at first, even for me and I was looking for it! I told several bikers who pulled over to enjoy the coolness of the tunnel to go back and look at it.
Having driven on both the new and old highway, it felt odd for a bit to walk on it without fear of being run over by a car, but the views were incredible, and I want to do it again (maybe in the fall when it’s slightly cooler).
Oh and for wildlife, we saw a doe along the trail and the doe and I watched each other for five minutes or so (I gave in and wanted to hike on).
On the drive to the trail, right along the Columbia River, a bald eagle swooped over Brian’s car holding a squirming fish in its talons. It was so surreal to see that in person – I think we both started laughing just because it was so exactly what you’d see in a movie or a commercial, not in real life.
As you can probably tell, I am finally happy. It is so good to be home, and you can tell – I am smiling, my skin color is better, I’m getting back into shape. How could you not be happy when you live in a place as amazing as Oregon?
This is the sort of thing that drives my sister crazy about me. Her husband, kids and I took a walk to give her time to talk to our Spanish friend Marta, and we came upon a small family who were looking intently and worriedly at something on the ground.
Their mom explained that they had found a squirrel who was paralyzed from the waist down, and that they didn’t know what to do. Jay pointed out that the squirrel was going to starve to death and we should go get a shovel (which I don’t have). Meanwhile, I’m watching how scared the poor thing is, and he’s dragging himself away to die. The look in his eyes as he watched us is what will get me.
This was hours ago, and I am still so blue about it – not so much the death, death is part of life, but the suffering he clearly experienced before that, and that there was nothing I could do about it. The squirrel, by the way, has passed on since then – I had to drive by on our way back from downtown and he was clearly an ex-squirrel.
It will make me sad for a long time – I know that, and I wish I could just brush off things like that as other people do. I hit a chipmunk years ago, and I have to not think about it, especially late at night.
Maggie, on the other hand, when I said I needed to think about something else so that I didn’t stay blue, thoughtfully started a conversation about why people want to put graffiti on things. It was an interesting conversation with someone who is just starting to grow up, and who comes from a suburb that doesn’t see much graffiti. Glad to have had the chance to talk to her about it.
On Monday nights, we’ve been heading to Old Town Pizza on MLK to watch movies. The first night we went, it was old (1940s and 1950s) beer commercials. They were completely awesome. One of them completely startled me – I had no idea that in-your-face foreplay was on TV back then. I’ve looked all over the internet and can’t find the one that scandalized me, which is disappointing, it was really cool. I wonder why beer companies don’t use their old commercials? It’d definitely make me pay more attention to them.
In any event, it was pretty cool to watch them listening to the thwap thwap thwap of the film project (16mm, Brian said). Not to mention having a beer or two while doing that.
Last night’s was crash test dummy films from the Ford Motor company. Also good, but even better was the 1950s PSA-like movie for teenagers on not drinking and driving. Old Town doesn’t particularly turn the music off in the restaurant while we watch these, so it was a bit surreal to watch it to electronica music, watching it storm outside and drinking a beer.
The guy who does this didn’t remember what he had planned for next week – he says he just grabs them out of his basement. He’s quite a character too as he sets up the film. I think we are starting to make friends with the bartender too, who is from Edinbourough. He’s fond of Brian’s full name, which makes me giggle. And I was amused this week because he was less one beard and Brian was less one head of hair. Almost timed, that.
Pretty cool night, except for the fact that when we went out to get in my car, we noticed that my car was spraypainted sometime between Sunday night and Monday evening. Brian had moved my car to the street while we were gardening because he wanted to pull some weeds in our driveway and I left it there knowing we were going somewhere Monday night. The morons didn’t get Brian’s car thankfully, but they clearly thought about it because they spraypainted a penis on the street in front of his car. Reported to the police, of course, and my car has already had it removed. I’m working with the city to get the sidewalk and street penises removed, so hopefully that’s that. I’ve got enough of my family in me to think that if they’d like to do that again, there will be BAD. CONSEQUENCES. But all in all, part of living in a city, I get that.