Visiting home after being away for as good as six years is remarkably the same as coming down from college on summer break. Everything is similar but you know it will never be the same. Everyone is a little older and wiser and your life experiences are now separate from one another. And yet your best friends drop back into rhythm with you and you with them and it’s almost like no time has passed, except that your stories now involve other people instead of each other and you find out new things as well is rediscover old things you have just forgotten.
My girlfriends and I were incredibly close in high school. We had slumber parties every weekend and rarely missed a church event together. We went to camp together, played in the worship band together, and sometimes fought together. Being back in Portland, my adopted home, with some of the best humans the world could offer, was so phenomenal and heart healing.
I arrived really late on Thursday night. We drove into downtown Portland to make it there by lunch time on Friday and my friend Rochelle took us to a hot spot by Portland State University where she used to work and each lunch all of the time.
This is Mikaela. She is wonderful. In middle school she danced on tables and scared the shy Jamie and Rochelle. We all befriended each other in high school and then Mike and I went on to be roommates my first year in university.
Holy deliciousness to thai food in Portland. Also, Rochelle used to be the pickiest eater known to mankind, but on this trip she was the one who suggested Thai. Way to blow our minds, Roachel.
After lunch we walked over to Powell’s book store. It is literally the size of a city block and four stories tall. Um hi, hours and hours spent looking at new and used books with friends? Yes please! We met up with our friend Jennifer at the coffee shop, spent a long time catching up, and then perused probably the entire store before we left.
I bought this journal for myself, plus a mug and a couple gifts. We caught a trolley after leaving Powell’s to go try the most fabulous hipster ice cream on the most trendy street I have ever seen in my life. There was a donut shop for grown-ups, to give you an idea, which is in direct juxtaposition to Voodoo Donuts–a tourist and sometimes local staple. Look it up–you won’t be disappointed.
Oh my Salt & Straw, how delicious and trendy you are, with your tattooed ice cream scoopers and weirdly named flavors. Never fear, you can order online, but be prepared to order in bulk and to pay handsomely for it.
After some selfies and saying farewell to Jenny, the girls and I drove back to Rochelle’s where we got ready for our friend Lydia’s bachelorette party.
We ate Italian food and were serenaded by an accordionist. Lydia shared tales from her relationship with her fiancé and we drank wine. Rochelle, Mikaela and I then turned in early because they are both moms of young children and my body-clock was three hours ahead on east coast time.
If you want to see a fantastic cake smash from the #bestbirthdayever, I will post that really soon here!
Until next time,