Portland.

Sometimes all you need is to get away. Memorial Day is the perfect excuse to take a mini vacation.

After singing karaoke with my roomies in the kitchen—we do a MEAN rendition of You and I and Spanish Pipedream—I made the ludicrous decision to drive to Portland at 7:30 at night on a Sunday. Which means I got into Portland at 10:30. Which also means I was there for less than 24 hours.

Sounds ridiculous, eh? Especially because gas is $4.45 a gallon. Straight up silly. I justified this decision with my need for a change and the fact that I biked to work everyday this month. I have saved so much gas this month that a spontaneous trip to Portland was in order.

It was magical. I celebrated my one year anniversary friendship with Ted and Ric—two dudes that I find refreshing. I am coming to the conclusion that men aren’t cool until they are over 30. This doesn’t hold true to ALL men, but this is a trend I am noticing. So hanging out with those two old dudes (hehe) was wonderful. They mixed up fancy cocktails, talked chickens with me and showed me all around their city.

Another conclusion I have reached: I LOVE Portland. This isn’t too surprising as it has a lot of things that I love. It is like if Seattle and Bellingham met, fell in love and had a ridiculously cute child. Portland is the love child of the West Coast.

I drank Aviators, met up with an old friend who hasn’t changed one iota (in the best way possible), squealed over the myriad of incredible boutiques and ate vegan food until my face hurt from smiling about all the options (if you ever go, hit up the Bye and Bye’s happy hour. Everything is vegan, everything is delicious).

Oh yeah, I also had the best cup of coffee ever. This is saying a lot as I have been a barista for 9 years and am a self-proclaimed snob when it comes to coffee. The guy actually had to take a break before he started on the strenuous work that my double short soy latte required.

That is some serious coffee business.

My trip to Portland confirmed a few things. 1) Portlandia is pretty spot-on, which I love. 2) Portland is a vegan mecca. 3) My future husband may be in Portland. I saw a table of three bearded men with forearm tattoos and flannel. One of them had a great dane slung across his lap. I wanted to congratulate them on their beauty.

Swoon.

Portland, you have my heart.

The Aviator (aka the drunk that made my heart happy and my mind fuzzy)

  • 2 oz gin
  • ¼ oz maraschino liquor
  • ½ oz fresh lemon juice
  • Dash of crème de Violette (which Ric actually had. I was impressed)
  • Lemon peel for garnish

Pour ingredients into a cocktail shaker (another thing Ric had. See? Awesome.) add ice. Shake that puppy up. Pour into some sort of fancy glass (through a strainer if you are feeling particular). Drink too many of them and then flirt shamelessly with whoever will have you. Or something adventurous like that.

Perspective.

Today I woke up feeling peaceful. After having a week from hell, I woke up at 5 am this morning feeling like today was going to be a pretty decent day. The pup and I spent our morning running around Greenlake while the sky turned pink. The geese (there are babies! So cute!), ducks and the notorious blue heron were playful this morning, teasing my dog as he attempted to pull me into the lake.

All of the birds were especially lively this morning. I like to think it was a sign that he is still a powerful presence in this world, and it is okay to feel happy today. Here’s looking at you Jim.

It was a bluebird on my shoulder kind of morning. Full of plans—most of them founded on spontaneity and curiosity of old friends and new places.

I do think it is time to shake the dust (Holler at my boy). To accept the ebb and flow of friendships and relationships. To get over the fear of trying something completely out of my comfort zone. To really start fresh with all of this, and come to terms with the fact that an adventure is all that I need.

So today I will work my 8 hour shift. I will bike home in the sunshine. I will reconnect with an old friend. I will BBQ with my bestie and cuddle up to my warm and sleepy hound dog. I will probably drink too much of something, and make questionable choices. I will let today be completely, 100% based on instinct and impulse.

In line with the drinking too much and making poor (or awesome, depending on the perspective) choices, I will most likely pop by the liquor store on my ride home from work (classy… I know) so I can whip up one (or two, or three) or these bad boys.

It will be a picture perfect afternoon. Backyard-sunshine-lounging with the roomies while marinated mushrooms, asparagus and kale roast on the BBQ.

I raise my glass to shaking the dust, and doing it all with a goddamn smile.

The Salty Chihuahua

  • Juice of three grapefruits
  • 4 oz  tequila
  • 2 oz orange liquor
  • Salt for rim
    • I think we know how to make this. You juice the grapefruits, you pop in the tequila and orange liquor and pour in glass with a salted rim. Drink. Celebrate. Repeat.The goal.