Downtown and a Surprise Visit!

Dear Liza,

Wednesday was a very busy day! First there was the planned busy, then the surprise busy. Both were wonderful and exhausting.

Cool mural by the Hawthorne Bridge

I wanted to walk downtown to pick up the litter grabbers we had ordered through so we can help clean up our neighborhood. The weather was predicted to be hot by the afternoon, but at least the winds had shifted and the smoke from the fires to the East wasn’t hanging around. I left the house before 9 so I could get there and back before the heat set in.

Smoke from the fires south and East of the city

This time I crossed west on the Hawthorne Bridge, enjoying the long, slightly smoky views of the river and some murals.

Our new grabbers!

The Solve office is three miles from home, so I was pretty pooped by the time I had met John at the door and picked the grabbers up. I found a spot in the shade and ate a cookie and my apple, thinking how nice it was to be out in the daylight, free to walk where I pleased.

Sunny, sparkly Willamette

I walked back East across the Morrison Bridge, which has better pedestrian walkways but drops you into a scary area below the freeways. I scooted up the hill, sitting in the shade when I needed to. Once I got home, I had walked six miles, and felt pretty good about it…. once I had cooled down and drunk two pints of water.

During this long walk I had been getting texts from Auntie Katie. Our dear friend Darcy and her daughter and grandson would be in town this afternoon! Could we meet them Auntie Katie’s shop? Well, yeah!

Darcy and McKenzie, shining souls

Auntie Bridgett is totally booked with work for her show, so Grandpa Nelson and I walked (I felt fine by then) the two miles to Books with Pictures, where we had ice cream and conversation. Auntie Katie brought out a huge umbrella for the table and we ate and exchanged stories. It was amazing and wonderful, feeling almost like old times.

Auntie Katie and the cousins, always up for ice cream

Cousins Jasper and Kestrel came over for ice cream and hugs, photos and smiles, and then headed back to their dad’s house.

Heading back to dad’s

By then, we all started feeling the wind changing, and the sky was getting that weird apocalyptic orange of forest smoke. We could see the grayish orange sky moving up the river, and knew we wanted to get home. Darcy and family returned to their friends’ house, Auntie Katie went back to a very busy day doing inventory, and we walked the two miles back up the hill.

The wind shifts, the smoke returns, and it’s time to head back home…

Needless to say, ten miles in one day is more than I’m used to, and (maybe) more than was a good idea. But it was a marvelous day and I wouldn’t trade it for anything!


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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