Portland – Seattle – Lopez Island

Still on the road, finally have a morning to write while I’m in Bend, Oregon sipping my Nespresso.

From Eugene, I stayed in Portland a few nights.  Most of the driving portion to get to Seattle was raining, the week before was the big snow storms so I was glad to have missed that while driving.  Rain I can handle, just couldn’t get out much.

Portland was beautiful, especially after Eugene.  There were great restaurants, very walkable (with umbrella) and it seemed to have a pretty efficient public transportation system.  I stayed at The Hotel Rose, a Pineapple Hotel, that a friend recommended.  The bonus there was a mini-cupcake every night.  I did a few touristy things, rode the tram and spent hours in Powell’s books.  Leave it to me to buy the heaviest books at the beginning of my trip, I bought some flying IFR (Instrument rated) text books that were used.  It rained the whole time, I could barely get my camera out.

Then on to help my friend with her baby…who was 2 days old by the time I got there and was back in the hospital for jaundice.  A little recap, I met her surfing in Mexico years ago and she’s single.  It’s a long story, but I drove up as adopted grandma to get them through their first week or so or she might not have had much help.

Checking in on us @ the hospital

We spent the first day in the hospital while the baby was under the blue lights.  The baby was released that day, I brought them home in my big ass truck.  At some point I had to reset my phone, changing all the settings.  That worked out well because I didn’t know what parking garage I was in so when I checked my phone for something else it popped right up.  Good thing, I was heading in the wrong direction.

This whole trip I haven’t cracked open a map.

In Seattle, I fulfilled my grandma duties…cooked, cleaned, laughed, cried.  Her house was beautiful, totally set up for a family that she dreamed of.  On the last day, she drove us to a few Dr. appointments and I knew she’d be fine.  My next stop was Lopez Island, which I scheduled tentatively not knowing when or if I could make it up there.

I worked my way up to the Lopez Island Ferry by route of La Conner to see the tulips…which weren’t in bloom yet because of the weather, I did get a great lunch in there and a tour of the museum that made me think I could be an artist (because I didn’t see anything  spectacular).  Above pics are of La Conner.

The ferry ride was a blast!!  Was worried about my F150 in there after the streets of Queen Anne.  There was nothing to worry about, big rigs fit on that ferry.  It was a little under an hour to get to Lopez.

I should say, by the time we got out from under baby juggling the weather cleared up.  We had a few days of rain, then it was sunny and brisk.  My HS GF lives in a small farmhouse on Lopez, which I didn’t know until I got there.  Being a crappy guest, I didn’t give her a date of departure.  We joked about it, then I still didn’t give her a date – mostly because I was still in baby mode and had no idea what day it even was??  When I saw it was a one bedroom house, and they would be sleeping in the trailer out back, I cut it a little short.

The weather was perfect!!  Not quite sailing weather, just enough to hike all over the place.  She’s super fit…me?  Not so much anymore after my knee/back episodes.  I kept up though, I’ll definitely go back to Lopez when the sailing season kicks in and probably stay in a B&B so I don’t feel like I’m kicking them out of their room.  If my visit was 2 weeks earlier we would have been XC skiing down the street.

I headed back to Seattle to check on mommy and baby, staying in a hotel this time for one night to see if she needed me for any longer than that.  My F150 was perfect my whole trip except for Seattle – how I got around without a scrape was a frigg’in miracle.  The worst was the hotel parking structure at the Mediterranean Hotel (which I liked besides that).  They had oversized parking, that was full of SUV’s.  I’m sorry, an SUV is not oversized.  It took me forever to inch my way back & forth into the one spot left that was pretty narrow.  When I left, I told the front desk about it and they just shrugged and said sorry.  Then as I was leaving a woman was waiting for someone in her SUV, I passive/aggressively told her it might take me awhile to get out with my OVERSIZED car.  She just shrugged, like “have at it.”

Then I had to dock the F150 for breakfast with a happy mommy/baby.  All was well with them, my job was finished and I could head back home.  Only not so fast, I headed to Bend, Oregon where I am now.  At one point, in Tacoma, my temp gauge said 80 degrees.

Besides the drive along the Oregon Trail, I rolled in last night and have only seen the Cracker Barrel (for the first time, it was a little freaky).  I’ll be here a few days before the weather turns back to rain, today looks good.


In nomad lengths, this doesn’t seem like it’s been a long time.  I’ve been gone since the 5th with only one night of good sleep besides Portland and last night.  My criteria for good sleep is if I can lay in bed drinking coffee and writing in the morning.


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