Major holiday traveling is a headache. We tried to beat the system by flying in and out of Portland during off-season and choosing a centrally located hotel to limit driving and crowds.
I found Hotel Rose, along the Willamette River, facing the park, ideally located for our small family of five. Walking shoes important, cars not.
Because Mike and I arrived a day earlier, I was able to renegotiate our “reserved” rooms to lovely adjoining rooms for our daughter, her husband, our 10 year old granddaughter and us. The views from the balcony included the park and river. They arrived at 4 and we decided to walk River Park and choose a restaurant for later.
A beautiful walk paralleling the Willamette River, busy with strollers, joggers, bikers and geese. Beautiful , relatively friendly and fat geese. According to natives, they come every fall to fatten up for the “long haul”.
Of course much of it they unload on the lawn! And here, nobody walks on the grass. We found a lovely riverside restaurant for dinner: McCormick & Schmick. We came later and sat outside under trees with sparkling lights. It was quiet and cool while inside the restaurant was a zoo.
When we were touring “Lan Su Chinese Garden”, a Chinese artist, exhibiting his work, was painting names in Chinese script. I cannot describe the way he…. painted but it was fantastic. Edie was enthusiastic about seeing her own name in a vibrant and artistic Chinese style ……and so were we.
Steve and Bronwyn got loaner bikes from our hotel and went riding. Portland has many “pedestrian only” streets that include bikers.
Later Edie and I set off for a round of shopping. I gave her a “cap” for purchases and she stopped 20 dollars short of the limit. “That’s all I need Grandma” she said. (I love this kid!)
We joined Mike, Steve and Bronwyn for coffee and Steve took this picture.
At a Lebanese restaurant that eve I had roast goat and Mike had lamb stew. Besides the excellent food, and best of all, we had a great convivial conversation. Even Edie, who had pulled out some of her drawings to work on and escape some boring adult conversation, contributed to ideas being expressed. She is growing up to be a very lovely and self-contained young girl.
The next morning we were all off to the Portland Saturday Craft Market.
It was inspiring. All the tents were operated by the craftsman or woman and was an amazing collection of talented work. Every time I inspected an object, the craft person was there to explain it and give background. I could have spent much more time….and money there.
Edie, Mike and I went back to lunch in our hotel and watched base ball afterward. Bronwyn and Steve went running.
We planned a celebratory dinner at Momma’s Italian.
We raised our wine (beer for Steve) glasses for the wonderful food and each other. It had been a splendid weekend.
When we got back to our hotel, Steve got the concierge to take the following picture ofour small, immediate family.
Wherever you are…….Happy Thanksgiving!