Up early this morning, probably because since Friday I’ve been up early. I have a slight headache at the moment, which I’m hoping is mostly due to dehydration.
Our trip was good. We had a 7am flight Friday morning, so we figured being up by 5am would be early enough. We were nearly wrong. We flew Alaska airlines and their gates are in the older terminal. The wait for a e-ticket kiosk was long. The wait to get through security was long. We dashed for the gate and saw no line for boarding, just one woman who was being chewed out by a flight attendant for a large piece of luggage. We figured we were late! We weren’t, they hadn’t started boarding at all and for a moment we caught a small bit of wrath ourselves.
We hit Portland by 10am after getting our rental car squared away. Our first stop was the fabled Powell’s bookstore. Getting there was interesting. The blocks in downtown Portland are very small. The blocks in Phoenix are very long. One red light was run and I’m sure our out-of-town driving gathered a great many shaking fists. Powell’s is huge. One of the first things Andy ever reported to me about Portland was that there a huge bookstore. In about an hour, I had already spent $80. Not that they had everything, but damn, they had a lot. I didn’t even see the whole store, after spending that much.
Next, puttered around the university before heading to a mall Andy had pointed out on our map for lunch. The mall was completely indoors closely surrounded by the city. We killed time there until 3:30. We headed back to Powell’s to meet up with Andy.
Every time I get together with someone I haven’t seen in a while I worry that maybe I won’t recognize them. When we had lunch with Debbie in Omaha, I didn’t recognize her. Andy has not changed. Same hair, same type of clothes, and though he complains about gaining a belly, I didn’t see an ounce of difference to him. It was so good to see him. No time had passed, certainly not four years.
He planned the evening just perfectly. First we went to this very large park and hiked around a bit. Beautiful views of the city and really amazing trails through the woods. It was so quiet on the trails. There was also a rose garden and a Japanese garden. All wonderful. Then we went to Andy’s favorite Thai restaurant. The food was good, though a tad bit pricey. All the food we had was a bit pricey, even the prices at IHOP were higher. But I really wish there were a Thai place that good here. And then we went to a brewpub where I drank too much beer. Their stout was no better than Guinness, but they had this Ruby ale that was like raspberry pop. We intended to leave Portland by nine or ten o’ clock because we had a two hour drive to Eugene, but we ended up back at Andy’s apartment and talked some more. So good. I really do miss Andy.
The weather while we were in Oregon was lovely. Portland was rainier and it was pretty cool. In Eugene, the sun would peek out from the clouds and fry us a few minutes and then the clouds would cool us down again. There wasn’t too much wind either, which worked out well for frisbee playing.
Saturday was a good day for the guys, they played very well and went 3-0. Two of the games were pretty close. There would have been four games, but the Portland Masters team was a no-show. Really, I was surprised by how well Ironwood’s game has improved. In usual style, dinner plans were sketchy at best. Eric and I ended up at an Italian place called Ambrosia with Al, Harry, Brenden and Jim, an old ulti friend of long-time Phoenix players. The food wasn’t too shabby. They had Guinness on tap and once again, I had beer.
Sunday wasn’t as spiffy. Ironwood won their first game (against an ill-spirited team) and then lost to a team they had narrowly defeated the day before. On the plus side, it was a narrow win and the opposing team was very spirited. We had rooted for them throughout Saturday and their first game Sunday.
The other advantage of Ironwood only playing two games was that I got to eat a late lunch before we headed back to Portland and we didn’t have to rush to make our plane. We got back to Phoenix very late and very tired.
Green Shadows, White Whale by Ray Bradbury
Memos from Purgatory by Harlan Ellison
The War Poems by Siegfried Sassoon
Iona by Fiona Macleod
The Bird’s Nest by Shirley Jackson
The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
(my paperback copy got wet in Florida, so it seems right that it should be replaced on another disc trip)
Red Dragon by Thomas Harris
The Devil: A Biography by Peter Stanford
The Good House by Tananarive Due
Castle Hart, a Greyhawk accessory
From the mall
Rifts Book of Magic, 70% off
From the fields
a Solstice disc
a Darkstar Ultimate T-Shirt because it was just too cool
Now, I really should get down to some work. I’m managed to unpack, and read my e-mail. Head still isn’t feeling well. There’s a bunch of writing I need to get done. And alas, no caffiene in the apartment. I’ll manage, I’m sure.
Really, I wish the trip might have been a day longer. Just to settle and relax before plunging back into heat and work.