The Raindrops of Portland

Fun-employment was a miserable, but (surprisingly) exciting era for me. After interviewing for countless jobs in New York and not garnering a new position, I decided to nourish my bohemian roots.

Rather than dwell on what I didn’t have, I focused on art, writing and experiencing a new culture. Although, I couldn’t afford to climb the Himalayas, play on Rio de Janeiro’s beaches, or walk the Great Wall of China, I opted for a grand bohemian retreat on the West Coast.

After experiencing too much sun in my native California, I longed for rain, lots of rain, and bacon, lots of bacon with a tasty brew, of course. As my plane took off to Portland, I tear nearly ran down my cheek. “Repeat after me, rain, rain, rain, coffee, coffee, coffee, bacon, so much bacon and plenty of cute bearded men,” said my quirky brain.

Predictably, I was met with rain, upon arrival at Portland airport. The drops were so massive. They practically needed their own zip code. Delighted with the puffy clouds and rain, I made my way into the rain-slicked pavement.

Food carts were clustered together on SW Washington Street. My stomach rumbled. While dashing toward the den of food porn, I was presented with a curious situation.

“Blood, blood, blood, I hate blood. Oy, I couldn’t be a doctor, since I am terrified of my own blood.” Said I. On the road to curing a rumbling tummy, I slipped on the rain soaked sidewalk and scrapped my knee.

Running back to my hotel, I screamed “disappointment.” I was shocked to have slipped on my first hour in Portland. A part of me wanted to stay in the hotel room and just cry over a minor injury. Instead, the warrior and adventurer in me prevailed.

I placed a bandage over my knee, and merrily walked back to the sidewalk. Rather than crying, I ventured to Powell’s Books (world’s biggest book shop) for some much needed book therapy.

Growing lost in the rain, I had a terrible time finding the legendary bookshop. Even though, Portland was on a grid, I was lost. Finally, I decided to actually ask for directions.

“Burnside divides SW Portland from NW Portland,” said the kind Oregonian. With her help, I finally found my bearings on the directions. From a distance, I saw Powell’s Bookstore.

It was one of those places in the West Coast; I’d always wanted to visit. When I flung the doors open, my mouth open wide. Powell’s Bookstore fit every adjective associated with the word, huge. Books upon books lined shelves. They towered to the ceiling. It was a cathedral dedicated to the written word.

Feeling like a seven-year old running around the world’s greatest toyshop, I gleefully read excerpts from my favorite authors. I also discovered local authors. Buying books on Maya Angelou and Gertrude Stein, I felt well accomplished.

Leaving Powell’s bookstore was difficult, since I always felt there was more to explore. The rain intensified and I had forgotten about my previous slip. Instead, I found great joy in exploring Portland and getting immersed in the dizzying array of Pacific Northwest-ness. It was the ideal bohemian retreat.

Advertisements
Previous Post
Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: