We left the beautiful Oregon coastline and headed inland to Portland this morning.  Once again, the scenery along the way was gorgeous. Rolling hills with farms and a backdrop of mountain forests.  We crossed innumerable creeks, streams, and rivers.

We are staying at the Sandy Riverfront RV Resort in Troutdale (“Gateway to the Columbia Gorge”) east of Portland. Not a bad RV park, but the spots are much closer together than the last two state parks we’ve stayed in.  I’m just excited because they have a laundromat (it is day 9 after all).

After setting up camp (also known as plugging in the electricity and hooking up to water and sewer), we drove to the Alberta Arts District.  I was in search of Bolt, a modern fabric shop.  They had some fun patterns by up and coming national and local designers and a large selection of printed canvas.  While I was admiring the fabric, Shawn stood in line at Salt & Straw for ice cream.  It had to be good because the line was down the street.  They had some fun flavors like Strawberry Honey Balsamic with Black Pepper, Pear & Blue Cheese, and a seasonal Dracula’s Blood Pudding (“a heady combination of warm spice and cream mixed into real blood pudding”).  I had to taste that.  The server felt compelled to warn me that the real blood pudding contained real pig’s blood. It tasted like a quality ice cream with an aftertaste of copper.

We did a little cider tasting at Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider (“The apple’s deepest purpose realized”).  Who knew they could make 12 ciders that are so distinctly different in taste?  In fact, I think only two actually tasted like apple.  There was sour cherry, ginger, pineapple, watermelon (yuck), hopricot, strawberry-lemongrass and something so hideous that I have blocked it from my recent memory.

Shawn’s friend Sean met us for dinner in Gresham.  He recommended a Lebanese restaurant that was fantastic.  They started us off with a 14” pita and a spicy dipping oil.  I had lamb shawarma over hummus and Shawn had spiced lamb over hummus.  I think this is the best meal we’ve had in Oregon.

On a side note, gas in Oregon is cheaper and they pump it for you!  Pumping your own gas is a $125 fine.

Daily Ratings & Stats

Bolt fabric shop – 3.5 stars
Salt & Straw ice cream – 3 stars (Shawn said it was delicious but the wait was entirely too long)
Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider – 3 stars
Nicholas Lebanese restaurant – 5 stars

Miles traveled – 111
Steps taken – not nearly enough for all the tasting today
Number of times I’ve used “beautiful” to describe Oregon – are you keeping track?