Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Oregon Part III: Portland

Hannah is spending the summer at college doing a research project with her mentor and traveling with a kick ass rugby team (I think those words are appropriate and suitable when talking about an all star women's rugby team that your niece is playing on) so was not part of the Oregon trip. But Tyler, Evan (both high schoolers) and Walker (colleger) were on hand to provide entertainment. Both Tyler and Evan are water sport creatures and Tyler was in water polo season so we went to a few of his games in Portland and spent the rest of the day exploring the city. I like cities and Portland was a new one and the girls got piggy backs and such from the boys so all in all a great day - and throw in an Irish Pub for lunch and a pretty entertaining 3d place world cup match while dining. We started our walk up near the Portland Timbers stadium and ended down at the river.

Tyler's world. They ended up winning the state tournament in the open division. To not get into too much detail, in sports, the open division is for any adult age and lots of competitive young teams (like Tyler's, a club team which kind of feeds into the high school team) play in this division to get experience. The way it works is that you might be playing against guys much older and larger and stronger and more experienced, all from which you can learn from, BUT they tend to be a lot less in shape and that tends to level the competition. We saw the final and it was great to see the older behemoths try and manhandle the youngsters - I have certainly been in both situations with soccer and think I like the older option more. I am good at using my experience and strength (weight!).

The Portland Timbers (MLS pro soccer team) are quite popular in these parts as the city does not have many other pro teams and soccer has enjoyed a long tradition of popularity here in the northwest. The stadium is really unique. From street level it is barely visible because it descends from the street down to the field. So basically, you enter at the top of the stadium and walk down to your seat. Its a beautiful venue and from what I have heard and seen on TV, home to some hardcore and very supportive fans. This face was outside on the grounds of the stadium.

Ada at the river side park market - plenty o' tie dye and such in the city.

Portland has a popular food truck culture so we decided to venture down towards the river where many of the truck congregate. On the way we walked by Voodoo Donuts, as seen on many food shows, and the line was out the door and around the bloc. I also saw several people in the airport with boxes of the unique confections. Unfortunately, the food trucks we came across were rather generic and I think we might have missed the area, where more congregate, by a few streets. The girls and teenage boy eating machines were hungry and an Irish Pub that EC had eaten at before beckoned from the next blok. So we opted to have lunch there and watch the 3d place WC game. Good choice!

Walker had just piggy backed Emmerson, who is quite dense these days, and worked up a thirst. These cool fountains dot the sidewalk of the city.

At the riverwalk.

This is the Willamette River - it flows into its bigger more famous sister, the Columbia River, a bit north of the city.

Not Mt. Hood, I know that - as that mountain looms much closer as you fly in or out of Portland and it is south of the Columbia River - these peaks were to the north ... alright, I give up - to the Google Machine. Mt. Adams and perhaps Rainier in the background or St. Helens? All three are visible from planes flying into the city.

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