This is the fifth of a series of posts dealing with my tenth and most recent trip to Seattle as adult, this time also covering Portland. I’ve made minor corrections to these reports. What few updates there are indicated by NOW in brackets.
Minor editing to fix typos/incorrect names.
A bit noisy in here last night, including someone’s battery going beep-beep-beep everyone once in a while (with longer gaps as the battery died). This time it rained a bit even as I was leaving the hostel though not for too long. I walked downtown, checking out the square by the courthouse, where at a MAX station I got a daypass. I visited the 7-11 that I’d asked directions at upon arrival, grabbed a free paper, and visited Mills End Park and Salmon Street Springs. It was still very early so I decided to walk across a bridge to the east side, gradually making my way to Sark’s Vacuum Museum (not very big but free; a corridor of vintage vacuum cleaners).
[NOW: The hostel was Northwest Portland Hostel. The square is in fact called Pioneer Courthouse Square. The bridge was Morrison Bridge].
I walked to Everyday Music (E Portland version) but it was still before 9 so I wandered around a bit, getting photos of a giant rotating milk carton (Sunshine Milk), then back to Everyday Music where I got some DVDs. I wandered past Lloyd Center for a Subway breakfast, then at Lloyd visited Barnes & Noble. The mall’s most interesting feature proved to be that it has an ice rink. I bought a couple seasons of Six Million Dollar Man at Suncoat Motion Picture Co, took one more look at the ice rink, then headed out.
I got on an east side Portland Streetcar but soon realized first that it turned the wrong way too soon and that it doesn’t automatically stop at every stop. I finally made it to the library book store Title Wave. Fun place to find esoteric stuff, though despite dealing in sometimes heavy books, their larger bags are paper, not plastic. I had to improvise because the bag started to tear about a block later.
I got on a 44 mistakenly thinking it was an express 4 (all non-Portland Streetcar transportation this day TriMet). Luckily It went north, just not northwest so was able to correct course to Mississippi SE. Black Rose Collective was gone but I visited Bridge City Comics and CD Game Exchange next door (same franchise as the Gresham one; bought more DVDs). The 4 bus I wanted went by and tried to find another route west, fearing a delay between busses. Dodging construction for the umpteenth time trying to find a place to get across, I had a bit of Willamette River, got off at JELD-WEN Field Station, dropped off stuff at the hostel, and ate lunch at the McDonald’s near the hostel.
I went to Pioneer Courthouse Square again, this time getting bus schedules at the Tourist Info place there. Music equipment was being set up at the square. I did one final trip to the east, getting Vanilla Coke at a SE Belmont stop and then getting DVDs at Movie Madness, which I wasn’t as impressed by last trip as the 2008 one. This time I found it more to my liking again. Lots of movie memorabilia there, so I got permission to get photos. In fact I almost forgot my DVDs there!
[NOW: The stop above was at a Walgreen’s.]
More rain luckily mainly while waiting in the bus shelter. Another 15 back downtown. I walked to Powell’s, then took a Portland Streetcar back to the downtown core. I sought out art pieces like the fountains with small animals, a pirate skeleton seen earlier this trip (forgot to mention), a topless hooded woman.
[NOW: The art pieces described above are Animals in Pools fountains, an unofficial art piece in front of Glowing Greens, and Kvinneakt.]
I visited Mill Ends Park once more then rested at the fountain. I then got on a Blue MAX train (really been beating the odds with Blue; for all but three times this trip a Red train had it come first would have worked just as well). I got off at Washington Park MAX Station. I was just going to wander around, but the Oregon Zoo was right there and only cost $11.50. I decided it would be a nice thing to do at the tail end of the trip. I think if anything it does an even better job than Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo at simulating a nature environment. Saw penguins (and later bat) flying, female lions play fighting until they noticed they had an audience, etc.
I went back to the MAX station (accessed by an elevator trip underground) and took a Blue MAX train to JELD-WEN Field MAX Station, in part because I had only got off before heading the other way and wanted to find the other side’s stop for the trip tomorrow morning. I almost had dinner at McDonald’s but reconsidered at the last minute and went to Sbarro at Pioneer Place). I got on a Blue MAX train that said Hillsboro (west), realized it was actually going east, got on a Blue MAX heading in the right direction, and made it to my hostel to pack.