After an almost 3 hours drive, we got to Portland. Smaller city but we enjoyed it a lot more. It just has a really good vibe, everybody is super friendly and travel distances are shorter.
On the first day we checked out the Lovecraft Bar, a gothic bar themed after the legendary horror writer. After that, we went to Division street to check out an occult bookshop called the Secret Forest and drink some Kava at the Bula Kava House. Kava is a plant from the Pacific Islands which is made into a drink. It has mildly relaxing and euphoric effects. It kinda worked out that way for us.
Second day, we went to check out the famous Burnside skatepark, then the also famous Powells book store. Super impressive, tons of different rooms, hundreds of thousands of books all ordered alphabetically by author. In the afternoon, we went for lunch at Homegrown Smoker (vegan BBQ place), then headed to the mystical district. It’s basically a street with 3 shops run by people identifying themselves as witches. We also checked out a cool record shop on the way, Green Noise.
At night, we went to a punk one day festival called ‘This is Portland, Not Portlandia III’. Portlandia is a TV show giving a very gentrified image of Portland. This event stood against that and was a genuine representation of the punk scene in the Portland area. $5 a wrist band, 4 venues all next to each other, 30+ bands: awesome. Music was good, beer was good, we had a lot of fun. Special mention to the Quarterworld venue: it’s an arcade filled with old and new arcade machines as well as pinballs, in two different rooms. We got to play a few games including the world’s largest Pac Man.
Jeremy playing Pac Man while a band is playing live..
On the last day, we went to the Japanese Garden, known to be the best Japanese garden outside of Japan. Stunningly beautiful. Some Bonsai trees were a few hundreds year-old, the oldest 500 years.
Adios Portland! Hope to see you again someday…