Cousins in Town

Dear Liza,

This weekend, two of Grandpa Nelson’s Cousins came to Portland to visit. Cousin Ann is a massage therapist in Kent, Washington, and her sister Carol does the same job in Oxnard, California.

Of course, they wanted to see our new home, so we dusted and tidied up, and had nice long chats catching up on their lives and those of their five brothers and sisters and their parents, Grandpa Nelson’s Aunt Bonnie and Uncle Paul. Then we headed down a block down on Belmont to Suzette, our local crepe place… actually, one of our local crepe places…but it’s the closest. The food was tasty and the atmosphere, as always, was friendly and comfortable. We stayed long after we had finished eating, just chatting away.

But we did need to get moving, because the cousins also wanted to see Auntie Katie’s bookstore, Books with Pictures, and her NEW, gonna-be bookstore, which, for now, is called “Building for Books” to differentiate it from the actual shop. Auntie Katie hopes to open it and give it its proper name by mid-May.

When we got there, we found six people, plus Katie, doing all sorts of work. A mother and daughter team were taping and masking windows so the walls could be painted. A burly fellow was trying to pick the lock of a door (from the inside) that had been locked years ago and the key lost. Another man was spackling holes and all sorts of gouges in the walls, also to be ready for painting.

I know this building will get done, because Auntie Katie DOES things. And I know that once it is done that it will be successful, as well. She has great books, wonderful service and love of her customers, and her new shop is actually across the street from an elementary school! Customers just walking by, every day! Hooray!!

After seeing all the progress being made (and all that is yet to be done) we sent the cousins off to the new part of the Jupiter Hotel, up on Burnside, so they could rest and shower. This new part is called Jupiter Next and we actually visited, but did not stay here, this past summer when it was new. It is very modern and hip, and the crowd and music in the bar sort of make the whole building vibrate. Even the art in the mirrored hallways is cool.

We met them for dinner in the Doug Fir, the log-cabiny looking restaurant that is part of the hotel. It was chatty but not deafening, and the food, beer, and wine were very good. Hours more of conversation and we hugged goodbye and headed home.

What a family! What a visit! Looking forward to seeing you this weekend, Liza McGeeza.

Love,

Grandma Judy

Author: Judy

I am a new transplant to Portland from Salinas, a small city in Central California. This is a blog about my new city.

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