My fabulous weekend in portland almost wasn't. I printed out directions to Midway from yahoo, which sent me through the city during rush hour. I was practically hyperventilating in the car thinking I would miss my flight. Although, to be truly authentic "travel" experience running through parking lots/airports/train/tube/stations is necessary ingredient in my crazy pie. I arrived at the gate 15 minutes before takeoff and my sweaty, disheveled appearance didn't stop some older gents from striking up a conversation. They live in Florida, which is apparently swirling down the toilet thanks to the influx of newyorkers and newjersians setting up house. I didn't really ask them the whys and hows, cause really, isn't a fucked up election, 3 hurricanes and a Bush as the governor enough?
Arrived in Portland and after a quick pee and phone call (at the same time, I'm afraid) I skedaddle out to the meeting point where I found tour guide and intrepid host polarbear
waiting in his car for me. After the initial few seconds of "it's been 6 years!", we got down to the bizness of cruising to his new lovely house. And lovely it is... groovy new wall colors and a comfortable kitchen/family area. Once it's all said and done it's gonna be an enviable bachelor pad. hats off, bear. My gallant host had to work on Friday, so we quickly went off to sleepyland.
I woke up the next morning, stretched and began the search for coffee. After all, I was in the land of the free and overly caffeinated, the cup runneth over with coffee. ha ha. The kitchen was as beanless as a cornfield in Antarctica. In desperation I found a diet cherry coke in the garage, which was surprisingly good with my Egg sandwich. Thankfully, polarbear
's parents stopped by to work on some house stuff and brought some coffee with her. We talked paint colors while I sucked the thermos dry and licked it clean. Most of the morning was spent on the couch watching a DVD of The Shield
and thinking of ways to torture polarbear
for being coffeeless. Time well spent, methinks.
After work, we mostly just tried to stay cool (heatwave, beeotch) and ate dinner. I had my first Pimm's Cup, which was refreshing and my new fave summer drink. We watched some more teevee and then crashed early to conserve energy for the heavy lifting Saturday brought. That is to say, the lifting of a wine glass to our lips over and over and over. There were only two things I wanted to do while in Portland: visit wineries and shoot a gun. Not at the same time, of course. Saturday we headed down to Dundee and checked out Erath and Joseph Drouhin. The wine country is gorgeous: greens and grays dotted with rose bushes and oddly worded signs. Not as formal or over-developed as Napa. Me likes. As we were leaving Drouhin, we ran into one of pb's rugby friends who was headed to another winery. Feeling pleasantly toasty and blasting the ghetto hip hop, we followed them to our third stop: Sokol Blosser the Washed Up Winery. We made the rounds and I got to harrass people about the wine we sell at Sunsinger... which reminds me, I gotta name drop the SB family members I met next time I work. anyways, it was F.U.N. K?
Next, we got some quick between-wine-sustenance (aka DQ) and headed to our fourth stop: a groovy little wine store that was tasting Bethel Heights and some other stuff I'd never heard of. About this time, my hormones (those being the I'm on my period hormones) decided to play a trick on me and sent my mood plummeting into the deep dark depths of that Scary Place. I sat down on a comfy chair, gave myself a metaphorical tall glass of water and tried to pull out of it. It mostly worked, although it lingered for most of the night which gives me a convenient excuse for why I made an ass out of myself at pb's friends' house. hormones + hours of drinking wine = less sass, more crass. Still cringing over it.
Sunday brought my second request for this visit: shooting a gun. I'm a gun virgin and felt it was high time to pop that cherry. Who better to teach me than polarbear
? We went to an indoor shooting range and I got to experience two handguns: a .22 and a 9mm. It was a highly sensorial experience. Most surprising was the sound... when the guys in the booth next to us started shooting it shook my bones. The smell was cutting and savory, kinda like walking into a thai restaurant that is cooking hot peppers. The gun felt small and threatening... I nearly peed my pants the first time I shot it. I shot a few rounds with the .22 then tried the 9mm. A world of difference. I felt completely out of control with the 9mm and only shot one clip. A few more rounds with the .22 made my trigger finger hurt like a bitch, so I let pb finish out the bullets. I'm glad I did it. I'll try and post a photo of my target later this week, I did a pretty good job at hitting the center. After shooting, we hit Burgerville and then Hip Chicks Do Wine. I had the found Hip Chicks webpage a few weeks ago and it seemed like My Kinda Place... an urban winery. It's tucked back behind factories and sketchy looking alleys, but it proved to have a few decent tastings. I bought a bottle of Drop Dead Red, now a shiny new LJ icon. I also came home with 2 groovy new wineglasses, which almost precipitated a spaztantrum by yours truly. I.want.to.take.
them.home. Again, I blame the hormones. After Hip Chicks, I tried to convince pb to go see some Strip[er] Chicks...which seemed apropos after shooting guns and drinking lesbian wine but the poor guy was tuckered out. next time, mon cher.
We headed back to bachelor pad and had more couch time and a dinner of cheese and crackers. Early to bed and early to rise for my flight home. After hugs and a special polarbear send-off (wheeeeeee!), I found the Coffee People and bought coffee to take home. I got extra-special attention at the xray check point, my hairdryer is apparently a threat to national security. Flights home were full but I was entralled with my shiny new Tom Robbins' book Fierce Invalids Home from Hot Climates
. I want to have this man's babies, I so adore his books.
To sum up this epic, it was one of the most enjoyable weekends in memory. Polarbear is the bestest tour guide, wino, sharpshooting, hippity hopping friends a girl could have. Hopefully, I'll pass inspection and be allowed to visit again.