April 21, 2008

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Trip – Day 2

The directory at Powells

Day 2 of our trip was Saturday (4/19) — I’m posting everything a day behind — I’m a slug. This was our big event day. We went to Portland. I’ve driven through Portland a few times — but never actually stopped and spent time. We didn’t get to do a lot — but we did get to do more than enough. We started off by going to a bookstore called Powells. If you are a bibliophile or a fan of bookstores — this is practically heaven. The store is an entire city block and 4 floors tall (5 if you count “books on hold”). It’s freaking HUGE. They have all the rooms color coded and have indexes to explain what topics are in what rooms (pictured left). Finding your way around to the room you want the first time is a bit challenging. I really enjoyed wandering around that place.

The next stop was lunch at a Deli/Restaurant called Rose’s. Tasty food, nothing special to report on that. The reason for mentioning this is their desserts. They have a lot of different cakes and things. Everyone at the table ordered something different. Mostly everyone’s cakes were dainty little things that sat proper on their plates and were only a few inches tall. Mine on the other hand, was a whole different story. I ordered the Black Forest Cake, and the gave me the entire god damn forest. The cake was so tall that it didn’t really fit on the plate and was laying on its side. Note: this is just a slice of the cake. We counted and it was something like 11 layers thick. Of course it was a really thick slice too — about 2 inches thick. I love cake, but I couldn’t finish the entire thing (at least not while still being able to walk). I told the waitress that next time I’ll just order a black sapling, or maybe a black branch. A little overkill.

After lunch (and a little shopping) we went to the Japanese Garden. This was the one place that I had to go (of course I didn’t even know about it till that morning). The exhibit they had wasn’t of much interest (Ceramic art from Hokkiado — not a pottery fan), but the garden itself was awesome. They had a waterfall area, koi pond, rock garden, just to name some of it. They have a lot of benches set out which was really nice. At one point in time we sat ourselves down at a covered bench and just took in the surrounding. It was beautiful and ultra peaceful. We were in an out of the way place, so there weren’t many other people coming by to bother us. We probably sat there for at least 20 minutes just enjoying the tranquility. Eventually we moved on — but it was great none the less. The only problems were the facts that it was too early in the season for a lot of the trees, it was cold, lightly precipitating and overcast. Oh well, next time I’ll come during the summer.

Oh — and we stopped at the local Fry’s Electronics on the way home. Of course I have the flagship store within driving distances of me in the bay — but for some a Fry’s is a delicacy.