Day Two – Portland, OR “Thanks, George!”

After a restful and chatty night sleep (Sam shouted, “PHYLLIS,” waking Eliza; Hannah slept through it), we began our morning at Joe Brown’s Cafe. Hannah found this gem via a quick Google search. It proved to be the quintessential small town breakfast locale. We ordered omelets, pancakes, French toast, and biscuits and gravy. Everything was delicious and the ambiance was a 10 out of 10.

After breakfast we enjoyed a scenic drive through Fort Vancouver, passing the officer barracks, army hospital, and Pearson aviation field. Here we found a monument celebrating the first nonstop flight over the North Pole, which began in the Soviet Union on June 18, 1937, and ended in Vancouver, Washington on June 20.

It was nearing 10 a.m. when we ventured back across state lines. Our first “Portland” moment occurred not too long after when we witnessed a girl cross the street chowing down on a head of raw broccoli. That’s about as Portland as it gets, folks!

Since the day was overcast, we were debating whether or not to go on the aerial tram. This is when we met George, an elderly man who gave us great advice to drive to the Council Crest Park instead. It was a beautiful overlook that we enjoyed in both the morning and early evening (we could see the mountains on our second visit!) It has two viewpoints where you can spot four mountains on a clear day – today we saw three: Mount St Helens, Mount Adams, and Mount Hood. We could not see Mount Rainier.

Portland, OR 036

Later, we stopped at Salt and Straw for afternoon ice cream. Here we met Chessy, the happiest ice cream enthusiast of all time (and Eliza’s kindred spirit). Salt and Straw is known for its unusual, artistic flavors. We each ordered cinnamon snickerdoodle and a complementary scoop; Hannah ordered wild-foraged berry sherbet, Sam ordered ancient heritage’s fresh cheese and strawberry, and Eliza ordered honey lavender.

Portland, OR 025

In true road trip fashion we then spotted Blue Star, the famous Portland donut shop, across the street. Naturally, we finished our ice cream and then sought out more sugar. Eliza devoured her orange olive oil donut, Sam had lemon poppy seed, and Hannah had blueberry cake (which was good but not out-of-this-world-life-changing).

We walked off our “lunch” in Powell’s Bookstore. Unfortunately, it was crowded and overpriced; the atmosphere was fun, however, so it was worth the visit. From here, Hannah and Sam headed to the Food Truck Village while Eliza went off to visit two of her Oxford classmates, Liz and Kate, who now live in Portland. It was a sweet reunion spent laughing and reminiscing about our time abroad.

Portland, OR 029

To end the day, we drove two hours south of Portland to Sam’s house in Sweet Home, Oregon. We had a good night’s sleep and are now preparing for our five hour drive to Redwoods National Park. We can’t wait!!

– – – – – fun facts – – – – –
Today is matching t-shirt day
We have spotted 26 license plates thus far
Hannah’s “Throwback” playlist is perfect