Zoobird

Dangerously organic!


It took me a little while to get used to Portland. The city is definitely different from the usual urban setting. I arrived at the airport. Friends had raved about Portland's transportation system. I stood at the Max ticket machine and tried to figure out how to get to the Hawthorne Hostel. Someone asked where I was trying to go. Minutes later, I had directions and a ticket in hand.

I caught a bus to Portland's SE side and mentioned that I was headed to the hostel. When I got off the bus, the bus driver noticed me walking in the wrong direction. He slowed down and a passenger called out "That way!" and smiled, pointing down the street.

I took a walk down Hawthorne Street. A sign beckoned me to a nearby garage sale. Someone noticed that I was unsure of my directions. Her hands were soapy from dog-washing suds. She called out to me "Do you need some help?" I answered "Yes! I'm looking for the garage sale." She smiled and gave me the directions. Her dog barked a friendly bark.

The garage sale was down the block, across the street. I crossed the street and noticed a car stopping to let me pass.

This wasn't a normal garage sale. Most of the items were hand made and free. I talked a while with the owner. When I mentioned I was visiting Portland, she suggested I consider taking a beautiful metal chain with colored stones as a souvenir.

People greeted me as I walked down the street. The houses in the Hawthorne District were painted colors like blue, green and mauve. There were lots of people tending their gardens.

I stopped by an organic produce stand on the way back to the hostel. The smells of fresh fruit and vegetables wafted out the door to meet me.

Someone in the store mentioned that it was a beautiful day. When I said I must have picked a special week to visit, he suggested a bike ride to Mt Talbot. "The view is fantastic!", he added.

It's only been a few weeks since my trip. I just checked airfares back to Portland.

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