Monday, July 23, 2018

Parents' vacation, 2018... days 1 and 2

M suggested that we go somewhere for our 40th birthday in 2018, rather than for our 10th anniversary in 2015. We went back and forth about where to go, especially after the audacious European trip wouldn't go below the price point for flights, and so we landed on a road trip of the Pacific Northwest.

We landed on July 10 at Sea-Tac Airport, picked up our Subaru Outback rental car (oh it was so clean) and took off for Pike's Market.

We walked a lot on the first day, but ultimately, we saw all we really wanted to see in the city. We were still on Eastern Time, so I think we went to bed at 8:30 Pacific time.

For food, we had a Wawa Sizzli for breakfast, a Wawa hoagie on the plane, and were still hungry for lunch. We tried Alice Poke, which was our first Poke experience, and we enjoyed it a lot!!

For dinner, we went to Pike Pub, right in Pike's Market.

We stayed in a really cool Airbnb. I was nervous since we were sleeping in a basement, but they had updated it so nicely, that it was a really great place to stay.

For breakfast the next day, Marc chose a place from Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives, Voula's Offshore Cafe. We were up around 3:30, which worked out well because Marc went for a run each morning before we took off.

Since we were pretty much finished with Seattle, we decided to go on to Portland rather than spending the morning in the city. Since we had some time now, we took the long route, which went around Mt Ranier, which M's uncle had suggested as a Must Do.

Once we got there, we realized it as a good time to stop and stretch and use the restrooms, so we stopped at a Visitor's Center at Mt Ranier, and took a tiny little hike to stretch.

When it was time for lunch, I turned to Yelp to look ahead to around where we'd be at lunchtime. I found a place with great Yelp reviews and so we went to Grounds for Opportunity. Thinking from the name that it was a coffeeshop play on words, we went in with pretty low expectations. We were wrong, though, after learning it is actually a place for training locals with not a lot of job opportunity how to work in the service industry. Lunch always tastes better when you feel like you're doing something good, but my salad was delicious!

We finally made it to Oregon and Portland wasn't far after crossing the border. I'd seen that the International Rose Test Garden was on Trip Advisor's list of best things to do in Portland, and after a friend's visit to San Francisco the week before landed her at a Japanese Garden, I really wanted to visit. It was right next to the test garden, so an easy choice.

Unfortunately, Portland's Japanese Garden was $18 per person, so we kept on walking through the park and checked out Oregon's Holocaust Memorial.

It was a really well done memorial. After that, we walked into the city proper to see what we could find.

Portland is funky, and I've heard that the dream of the 90s are alive in Portland.

And, they were right. We could visit a Doc Martens store, sell our used CDs, and we visited the monstrous Powells Bookstore. M also found a concert hall in which Bone Thugs n Harmony were playing.

We went to Von Ebert's for a drink (Portland has a ton of local craft beer places, especially from Bend, OR, which it sounds like we should have visited), and stopped at Deschutes Brewery for dinner.

We then checked out Ruby Jewel for dessert, which was pretty awesome, with a build your own cookie sandwich idea.