The Quadriga, St. Paul Minnesota Capitol, July 12, 2018

The Quadriga, St. Paul Minnesota Capitol, July 12, 2018
The Quadriga, St. Paul Minnesota Capitol, July 12, 2018

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Oh, Deer, Oh, Deer! - Tues., June 12, 2018

Today's blog is a mish-mash of happenings since last Thursday when we flew into Portland, Oregon: moving furniture was involved, as well as a dinner at PF Chang's, laser tag, mini family reunion, a minor remodel, two movies, dinner at Panera Bread, the Portland Rose Festival Volksmarch, we spent part of every day with mom, lunch at Olive Garden, and we visited Dad's grave at Willamette National Cemetery. Below is how it all went down...

Bob and I flew out of San Antonio's 100+ degree heat on Wednesday, June 6, at 8:50 p.m., changed planes in Phoenix and made it to Portland at 12:35 a.m. Thursday morning. We slept in, had breakfast at Elmer's Pancake House and then went to Marquis Assisted Living to meet my brother Frank at Mom's apartment in the early afternoon. Bob and Frank moved the love seat out of her apartment.

Mom, my sister Jan, and I went for a walk around the outside of the assisted living facility. It was a beautiful, sunny day. I didn't take my phone with me. When we returned to the room, my phone had three voice messages and an urgent text. Oh, dear, I forgot to give the guys the key to mom's house. Luckily, it was only about a 15-minute drive away and we had time to run over there before our movie started.

The guys, including Bob's son Randall, moved the loveseat back to her house and picked up a recliner. Then they were off to Beaverton to pick up an easy chair mom had paid for over the phone. At some point during this "guy time," Randall removed three dated, yellow glass panels from the entryway at Mom's house which opened up the entry view to include the golf course through the living room windows. Way to go, Randall! It looks awesome now.

Mom's entryway with yellow glass panels removed.
Meanwhile, Mom, Jan, and I went to see "Adrift," a true story about a couple who were adrift at sea in 1983 after a hurricane disabled the yacht they were trying to deliver from Tahiti to San Diego. This was quite a memorable movie. Wow.

After the movie, we met Michael, Bob, Frank, and Randall at PF Chang's for dinner. What a wonderful meal. It was a mini family reunion!


Randall, Jan, Mom
Bob and my brother Frank
Frank eating lava cake
Frank, Randall, Jan, Bob, Mom, me, Michael
When we finished dinner, Frank, Bob, Michael, and I drove to Gresham to play three games of laser tag at Wonderland. Randall and Marissa showed up after the first game, so they played two games. Frank stayed for two games and called it a night. It was so much fun. We didn't know it, but Thursday nights laser tag is $3.25 per game so the arena was pretty full for all three games.

As I was driving back to Tigard on I-5 South in the middle lane, I noticed something unusual in my lane of the freeway...a deer! OMG! Brake! Swerve right! I missed it. Luckily, I always know where other cars are when I'm driving. I knew there was no one to my right. There was a car on my left and one behind me. The deer had been moving slowly toward the fast lane. 

I saw all the cars behind me stop. I don't know what happened to the deer. Hopefully, they missed it and were trying to get it to move off the freeway. That was really scary!

Friday, Bob and I worked on Mom's house to get things ready for the estate sale. Bob (Mr. Hercules) moved a really heavy two-level oven from Mom's garage to the curb. It had been sitting in the garage for months. [If we had it at the curb there was no charge for heavy item pick up (or $15 max). If it was in the garage, it would have cost $15 for the driver and $1.25 per minute for a second person to help the driver move it out to the truck.] Good job, Bob!

Later in the afternoon on Friday, we went to Mom's apartment to see how nice it looked with the new arrangement of furniture. All of us went to dinner at Panera Bread except mom. We brought back a 1/2 sandwich, 1/2 salad, and a pecan sticky bun for her. Then we all called it a night.

Bob was flying back to San Antonio on Saturday afternoon, but in the morning we wanted to walk the Portland Rose Festival walk. It started at 9:00 a.m. Randall and Marissa had planned to walk with us, but other circumstances forced them to cancel.

The weather forecast mentioned rain and thunderstorms. When we started the walk it was sunny and pleasant with large, interesting cloud formations. I brought my umbrella along just in case.

Our walk instructions said we would see the Dragon Boat Races on the Willamette River, and we did! I love watching them race to the beat of their drummer.

The art below shows the bridges over the Willamette River in Portland. There is a sister piece next to it that shows the Columbia River Gorge.
Bridges over the Willamette River
Sculpture resembling a building's skeletal structure
Downtown Portland and the Willamette River
Bob crossing the Hawthorne Bridge
The Dragon Boat Races are part of Rose Festival. The races are run in heats. We watched one heat as we walked across the bridge.
Lining up at the start
And they're off!
The race was neck and neck, but the blue boat won.
The drummer is in the front of the boat.
Turning around to head back out.
From the bridge, we walked along Waterfront Park. Navy and Coast Guard ships lined the seawall. There were even some ships visiting from Canada. A training ship was at the seawall as well. 


U.S. Coast Guard Cutter (USCGC) Ironwood
History of the Ironwood
The Ironwood is now an active training vessel for the Seamanship Program at Tongue Point Job Corps Center in Astoria, Oregon. The Seamanship Program is 18-24 months of intense maritime training.

On the smokestack of the Ironwood.


Canadian vessel

Canadian vessel
Our route then veered away from the seawall and into Saturday Market. We enjoyed looking at all the fun products and art being sold there.
Skidmore Fountain
Saturday Market
From street level, we headed up onto the Burnside Bridge where the parade would be crossing the river. Apparently, we were too early for the big floats. We saw a marching band and some walking groups, but then nothing as far as the eye could see. 

Fred Meyer walkers in the parade

In the background of the photo below is the Moda Center. Bob worked for the roofing company who built the Rose Garden Arena (now the Moda Center) and his name is on a plaque on the outside of the building. He took me up on the roof one day when they were building it. It was an awesome view of downtown Portland.

A U.S. ship with the Moda Center in the background
Looking back at the iconic symbols of downtown.
The Portland symbol used to be the White Stag sign.
U.S. ships
We watched a tower crane get built!
Enlarge the photo below to see the four guys at each corner of the tower guiding the crane operator's control box into place. Wow. That would be a scary job!

Wildly painted new apartment building
We were mesmerized by the
building of the tower crane.

Because the crane that was building the tower crane was blocking the street we were supposed to walk on, we had to take a detour around it. The walk then veered away from the parade route and we walked through a business area before returning to our start point. Our first loop (6k) was done. 


The rain never came down in earnest so we chose to do the second loop (5k) to make an 11k (6.8 mile) walk out of it. The weather was cool, so it was good for walking. 

The second loop of our walk took us through southeast neighborhoods and on Hawthorne Blvd. where we enjoyed looking at shops. Quite a few murals revealed themselves as we walked.

The modern building below has a mural advertising a radio station. Even though the mural looks old, it is advertising current rock bands -- Red Hot Chili Peppers, Everclear, Creed, etc. -- and the art on the right of it shows guitar players.



Anime character mural
This says, "Flash."
This one looks very British to me.
The mural along the building below sports authors and their quotes. 


Virginia Woolf and Fyodor Dostoyevski are on the far right
We didn't have a very big breakfast, so we were very happy to find a bakery. While we were in the bakery a big downpour hit. Even though we bought our pastries to go, when we got outside we plopped ourselves down at the picnic tables that were under cover. By the time we finished eating, the rain had let up and we continued on our way. 

Somewhere along the way, I hurt my knee. I think I stepped down hard on it. for the last mile or two, I was limping along. My knee kept popping and almost collapsing. It really hurt. Bob offered to get the car, but I thought I could make it. (I did.)

Along the way, we saw beautiful homes, old churches, and the occasional oddity. It is Portland, after all.



I had never heard of a tool library before today. You can only join if you live in a certain area of Portland and follow very strict rules when you borrow tools. You can learn more about it here.
Hinson Baptist Church--they host the SE Portland
Tool Library 
Food trucks (and a double-decker bus)
Lebanese Bistro
Unique rock building


Portland Mennonite Church
Cute doors
Colorful homes
Old church

What kind of  flower looks like a ballerina dancing
(or a whirling dervish)?
A gorgeous home
Fairy garden
Hydrangeas and hostas
One more cool mural before we finished.
Bob drove the car from our parking spot close to the door where I had to check in at the end of the walk. I hobbled out to the car. He then drove us back to Mom's house. He changed clothes and then I took him to the airport. 

Sunday, Michael and I went to see "Ocean's 8," which we enjoyed. In the evening, Jan and I visited Mom at her apartment where we watched 60 Minutes and then played Rummikub.

Yesterday, I took Mom to her house for one last look around to see if she forgot anything and then we went to lunch at PF Chang's. I spent the afternoon finishing cleaning Mom's things out of her house before the estate sale. In the evening, I moved over to my sister's house for the remainder of the time I'm here. Thank you, Jan, for having me over. I really appreciate it.

Today, Mom, Jan, and I went to Olive Garden for lunch and then we went to visit Dad's grave. I had only been to Willamette National Cemetery for the funeral. This is the first time I visited his grave.

I will be in Oregon until June 20. Mom's estate sale will be this weekend (June 16-17) and then we will put her house on the market.

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