Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Portland (part one)

Having never been to the Northwest, we decided it was time to visit that part of the country. We were very fortune to have Emily Jenkins, a friend who was on the percussion line with me in school, to allow us to stay with her at her home in Portland. She and her husband, Tony, relocated to Portland in 2005, and they both really love it. Tony is currently deployed to Iraq but should be back to Portland in a few weeks and should be done with his service completely.

We are so grateful to Emily for allowing us to invade her house.

Here goes the chronicles of our journey. ( I didn't take as detailed notes on this trip, so it shouldn't be as big of a blog as our New York trip.)

  • Our journey began on Monday, March 24. We dropped Hebrew National, my dog, off at my parents in the afternoon and were off to the Ramada near the St. Louis airport. We had done some investigation and found that it was cheaper for us to stay a night at the Ramada use the hotels park and fly option than it was to leave our car parked at an airport parking lot. That being said, the Ramada wasn't the greatest. It served a purpose — it was a place to get some rest before our early morning flight and it had a shuttle service that took us to the front doors of the airport. After moving two different times, our third hotel room was fine. The first two smelled of cigarette smoke badly even though they were non-smoking rooms, so we were moved to a different floor and didn't have any smoke issues.
  • I had not been feeling well, and I felt like I was starting to get a little congestion and possibly a minor fever. Rachel got me some DayQuil and NyQuil tablets so we could take the trip and I wouldn't be so uncomfortable.
  • Our Tuesday morning flight was at 6 a.m. on Frontier Airlines, so we decided to catch the 4 a.m. shuttle service on Tuesday since the airlines always recommend getting to the airport extra early. The shuttle left a few minutes early since we and the other party who signed up for the 4 a.m. shuttle were already there. We arrived to the airport and got down to security to find that it didn't open until 4:30, so Rachel opted to get a greasy cheese danish while we sat waiting.
  • After getting through security, we sat another hour or so until we actually boarded our Frontier Airlines jet. I had never flown with Frontier, but I liked how their flights offer TV service. We didn't want to pay $6 to watch TV, but we could've watch the small screen on the seatback in front of us if we had wanted. I did use the free preview while it lasted.
  • Our plane layover was in Denver, but the same plane that had brought us from St. Louis to Denver was the same plane that was flying from Denver on to Portland. Another couple of hours in the air, and we landed on the west coast at 10 a.m.
A view of our Frontier jet. Our Frontier jet, which is a "different kind of animal," sported a parrot on our flight from St. Louis to Portland.

  • Our next venture was getting from the airport to Emily's house in Portland via the Max, the public transportation rail system in Portland. After getting our day pass, we boarded the red line, which took us to a stop where we switched to the green line. The green line then took us to the Division stop, where we then go off to catch a bus near Emily's house.
  • After a short walk from the bus, we found Emily's house. Needless to say, we crashed after we got to her house.

Our first ride on the Max in Portland.

  • After a restful afternoon, Emily arrived home from work and took us on a tour of the various neighborhoods that comprise Portland. We stopped at a small Mexican restaurant for some quick, inexpensive (but very tasty) tacos.
  • That evening we hit the hay early, but not before watching Emily make her oatmeal medley that she was preparing for the next day.
Emily's oatmeal medley.

Rachel getting ready to sleep on our Ikea pullout sofa that was very comfortable after a long day of travel. I wish I looked that good at the end of the day! (I know, right?)

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