You won’t believe it, but last Friday Grandpa Nelson and I did another, even longer walk. The day was predicted to be between 65 and 80 degrees, with a nice breeze, so we decided to head out.
First we walked south through our own Sunnyside neighborhood and into Ladd’s Addition, enjoying the now familiar old houses, trees, and rose gardens. We stopped by Books with Pictures to visit Auntie Katie. She was busy making a Scavenger Hunt for Jasper to keep him busy for the morning. Cousin Kestrel was in a MOOD and not interested.
We continued west, across train tracks and under electric streetcar wires, along a busy, well-marked set of paths for buses, pedestrians, and bicycles. It felt like we were in the middle of a very busy world, but since it was past commuter hour, there wasn’t much traffic. We crossed the iconic, harp-shaped Tilikum Bridge, and took time to look upstream and down to get a better sense of where we were.
Walking the bridge gives so much more perspective than even cycling over it.
I got to stop near the West Bank and watch the waves from a passing boat lap along the sandy shore.
On the west side, we walked along through the glass condominium towers and came to the Lower campus of the OHSU. We had cookies and sodas to hold us until we found a good place for lunch. Grandpa Nelson had researched and knew that the South Waterfront Greenway continued south from here, so we wandered around, and there it was!
As we walked along, I was surprised by two contradictory things.
The first was how many people lived in this area. A hundred buildings, glassy and new or older and woodsy, housed what must be thousands of people. It was like a small city of high – and low-rises and condos!
The second thing I noticed was how green and wild this part of the Willamette was. Blackberry bushes, cottonwoods, and all sorts of brambles flourished along the path. Sometimes there was no sound at all except the lapping of the river and the breeze in the trees.
I will tell you more about what we found in my next letter.