Keeping it Weird

Trip Start Jul 03, 2009
Trip End Aug 16, 2009

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Flag of United States  , Oregon
Sunday, July 19, 2009

After an indulging bit of sleeping in (until 9:30!), we met Jim and Derek at Bijou for yet another locally sourced mostly organic breakfast. At this point, it's almost not noteworthy to mention that the food was filling and tasty.

After that, off to the people-watching Mecca that is Portland Saturday Market (on Sunday)—what must be one of the largest collections of decorative soap, cat-toy, cat-themed clothing, and animal-shaped whistle vendors in the world. While Joe filmed the balloon woman (what she’s actually making is up for grabs…MB thought it was boobs on a stick), MB, Jim and Derek were accosted by a bumper sticker-wielding dervish (Quoth the lady to Jim and Derek: "I’m going to give you a citation for looking too good," and to Maribeth “You must be the brains of the operation.”) What finally appeased her was a well-placed donation of $5 to whatever likely noble cause she was peddling on behalf of (Thanks for taking one for the team, Derek).

Before leaving (after listening to Jesus play the electric violin – see attached video), both Maribeth and Joe had their palms read. Never an experienced to be repeated. Yes, I know that these people are all ultimately fraudulent, but at least most mystics have the decency to put on some theatrics. This woman strategically placed herself between a band and a vat of hot frying oil, so what I heard was that my kids were going to be fine now that they’ve gone through their tough period (MB, having gone first and accidentally nodded yes when the reader asked if our two children were with us.)

Off to more food: We took the remnants of last night’s meal along with some cheese, olives, and grape leaf rolls up to the international Rose Test Garden in the hills above the city for a picnic. Jim explained that our rose garden fete was a totally non-gay thing to do. Yep, it was real butch J

Embarrassingly enough, we then bought more food, this time in the form of award-winning ice cream from a roadside stand. While Jim nibbled on salmon and cream cheese, MB licked a vanilla lime scoop, and I had a mint-jalapeņo concoction. We bypassed the asparagus flavor which the vendor offered to top with salt for us, didn’t increase the appeal.

At this point, we were all up for a bit of true American culture. No more public transit and bike lanes. No more artisanal food and local, seasonal creations. No more local business. It was time for a movie…in a mall…near the suburbs...served by disaffected, minimum-wage earners …and Coke products. It was time for…Bruno, and it was horrible. But it did give us time to recharge our gastronomic batteries for one more stunning meal. French was the cuisine, and Navarre was the restaurant. The small plates feast was the perfect end to a wonderful and restful weekend. Jim and Derek, we can’t thank you enough for taking the time to be the perfect hosts! You guys rock, and deserve a small party for putting up with us.
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