Where do you want to go?

Portland and Oregon Coast

By Laeti, 10/23/2011 - 05:07

I have some friends who do a sale tour of posters in the US (east coast), so I decided to ask to a friend if I could spend some time with her doing this crazy and funny job ! She agreed and proposed I work with her for two weeks.
Then I arrived at the conclusion that I could stay away from home for two months : working for two weeks and then travelling around US for the rest of the time.

My trip started in NY, then it was off to Chicago, Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Detroit, Pittsburgh and NY again.

The second part of my trip was the West Coast.
Afetr spending three days in LA I took a flight to Portland, Oregon.
The first impression of this city is the color GREEN ! Immense green spaces, mountains and gigantic super green trees. Even at the airport they have green ivy covering the outside walls of the parking structure!

My friends came to pick me up at the airport and they showed me around. They live in the south east of Portland in a very charming area: lovely houses in elegant streets full of huge trees, plants, vegetable gardens and animals!
like cats and puppies of course but also like chickens, roosters, rabbits and goats.
You can have a rooster for pet! They are friendly and they like strolling around.

You can also meet humans of course, they usually prefer bikes rathen than cars here, they often have very cool and coulourful bikes, so you can easily take a ride in Portland and see all the different neighborhoods.
And if you do it you will see that urban farming is a must here! Everyone has a homegrown vegetables gardens in the very center of a quite big and industrial city of north america.
You can taste a home made goat cheese, grab a pear or a branch of rosemary without any efforts, you need just to walk in the neighborhood and be nice with people who live there.

After a few days in Portland a friend and I decided to rent a car ( I know it's not really ecotourism but we had only 3 days ) to go to the coast. We took the 5 to the south because we wanted to go to Crater Lake National Park and then come back by the coast, but then unfortunately we realized we had not so much time and so we decided to focus only on the coast.
So in Albany we left the 5 for the 101.

After few miles we saw a pretty nice old covered bridge from the road, we stopped and had a walk on it.
On the other side of the bridge we saw a lovely old lady, Maudy, who was working in her garden, we went to see her and talked with her for a while, she was so charming and brilliant, she told us that her grandfather built up the bridge and she gave us an apple from her garden before wishing us a great trip. Smiling we went back to our car to continue the trip.

When my friend and I first saw the oregon coast we looked at each other excited like kids by the pacific waves and the environment. We walked and ran for a while on a beach near Florence and watched the sunset. We could barely believe it was real ! We spent the night in a family motel in Florence, we had dinner in a tiny charming restaurant, we had local seafood and of course local wine.

The next morning we went to see the dunes near Florence, we walked a lot in the dunes, the atmosphere and the colors were amazing, we saw nobody for a while and then we run into a couple of Canadians with their puppy who had set up camp near the dunes. They were travelling from Vancouver to Baja. WOW !

Then we took the car again to go north and stop in a lovely village, Yachats, where we had lunch with a friend's mum, Susan, who lived for a while in Italy and who was looking forward to meet Italian girls with whom she could speak some italian again.

Then we took the car again and went north. In Oregon it rains a lot, a little bit every day, but thanks to that you have spectacular landascapes and views, and this incredible FOG you can find only here. We stopped in Pacific City to see the sunset and it was magic : this big rock fit into the water full of birds flying on it with the sun going down....

We spend the night in Manzanita, a tiny windy village near Cannon Beach, we looked for a nice place to stay but everything was full or too fancy for us ! We finally found a family motel, that was kind of mysterious from the outside.
We met the owners : a couple in their late fifties, typical deep american, and I feel like in a Lynch movie but we trust them and we took a room. And the room was so graceful, with homemade blankets over the beds and some candles on the table.

The next day we went to Cannon Beach, the Goonies beach ! We took lots of tourist pictures and then decided to go to Ecola Park, we stopped the car and had a walk into the woods, in all these gigantic green vivid trees, and there we had an epiphany and we feel really connected with the Nature. It was so mystical and almost unreal !

We finally went back to Portland and spent one more day with our beautiful friends there. We had so much fun !
Portland mon amour...

Discovering Oregon and their eco way of life was the best part of my US trip ! Great people and great landscapes !
I want definitely to live there in my next life!

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