Vacation Day 1: T-storms and Bloody Marys!

I arrived in Portland at 11:00 am yesterday. I immediately went to Reyna’s apartment (her sister Mary picked me up at the airport…thank god, because I was bleary-eyed and sweaty from lack of sleep and hours spent in a scrunched position on the plane). Took a shower, put on a sundress and clogs (it is Portland, after all), and walked over to Hawthorne to meet Alana at the Fresh Pot. We wandered around, looking for a birthday gift for Reyna (I already know what I want to get her and I am realizing that it may involve a trip to Target or Macy’s). And then Zach joined us!

We went to the Buffalo Exchange, where I bought an amazing leather jacket (a mere $18), a cute Mexican blanket-y purse, and a show-stopping fringed suede vest(possibly my luckiest day there, since my first time six years ago). And then we spent the next 3-ish hours at the Baghdad. I love this place for two reasons:

A. The outdoor seating (smack dab on the sidewalk on Hawthorne) allows endless people-watc
hing entertainment.
B. The bloody marys are above average (but not comparable to those available at the Delta Cafe).

Susie joined us…and we made the important decision to spell her name “s-i-o-u-x-s-i-e” from now on.
Our harried waitress hated us.
Reyna arrived, fresh from work and looking super-cute!
Tater tots were purchased and then decorated to resemble humanoids. Zach must be given credit for this.

A potato-themed photo session ensued.

After Alana and Susie left, and then after Zach worked up an appalling $30 tab (one of the primary drawbacks of the Baghdad is its surprisingly high drink prices), we went to the Side Street on Belmont, all in the name of fiscal responsibility. Another drink, and then it was time for Zach to go to work.

Reyna and I planned to walk back to her apartment for a nap. After all, I had four hours of sleep the night before and she had awakened early for work. But just as we were about to cross Belmont, we were flagged down by

our friend Mike. And before I knew it, we were sitting in the Aalto Lounge, drinking Mexican beer. We met Mike’s older brother, we had just flown in to town on the same flight as me! Also, Brian was working, so I had a chance to catch up with him for a bit.

And then! A thunderstorm…with actual lightening a
nd torrential rainfall. Despite the endless fall/winter/spring rain in Portland, thunderstorms are a rarity…and so of course, we were very excited…at least, at first. When it was still pouring hours later, we became antsy. Certainly we couldn’t walk home in that weather! More beers were consumed. I felt nearly comatose from alcohol and exhaustion.
We decided to brave it…and just as we walked outside, the rain stopped completely. Our walk home was the sweetest…the air was clean and fresh. All of the flowers (and trust me, SE Portland is filled with them) were refreshed by the rain. Bright red poppies were overflowing onto the sidewalk (hence the photo at the top of this entry). Pink and white flowers formed carpets across lawns. And even the simplest tree was made of emeralds. Oh Portland!

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