I have wanted to visit the Sutro Bath ruins for a couple of years now and while my mom was in San Francisco for New Years, I knew it was something she would enjoy exploring, too. I love little hidden places like this, so rich with history, but now just a part of the every day San Francisco culture. People were out for their daily stroll, letting their dogs run free amongst ruins of what a century ago used to be a 3-acre public bathhouse with an ocean view.
- Sleep: another airbnb.com find, at a little craftsman style home in the Hawthorne district of Portland - walking distance to shops and restaurants.
- Sights: the Portland Art Museum, which I thought was absolutely amazing... I could have spent 2 days in there! My favorite exhibit was the "This is War!" exhibit of graphic arts from the Great War. It was interesting to see the pieces from all over the world, and see similarities in the artists' work that were from the same country. I also loved the New Photography Acquisitions section. I'm always fascinated by photography, I think because I like to getting a peek at the world as other people see it.
- Activities: I admit, I really wasn't digging Portland when we arrived. After 5 glorious days in small towns and beautiful outdoor scenery, I was NOT happy to be in a city with traffic and so many people. Thankfully, Brent stuck with me through my bad mood and we turned it all around with a really fun night of bowling. I don't know why we don't bowl more often! But, I digress.
- Food: Portland has the BEST food!
- Bollywood Theater: Brent and I ran across this place after having worked up an appetite while bowling. This is the BEST Indian food EVER. I have already found a recipe for Pork Vindaloo to make at home... I'll let you know how it goes.
- Bijou Cafe: I found this little place while I wandered downtown Friday morning in search for a brunch spot that didn't have a line around the block. Apparently, it's a well-known fact that Portland likes to brunch, but somehow I was unaware of this when I set out that morning. I found the Bijou Cafe had seats available at their bar and I was happy to have a good ol' farm fresh breakfast there. Highly recommend.
- Trinket: this was literally a block away from the house where we stayed, and I had such a great brunch there! I knew it was a good fit for me when I walked in and they had Fitz and the Tantrums playing and antique silverware on the table.
- Overall: Portland was not my favorite city. I'm pretty sure it was just because I wanted to be back outdoors in the Columbia Gorge area or back in Bend, but I think there was more to it than that. I loved the food everywhere and the art museum, but otherwise everything just felt a little too serious for me... I would guess half of the population I saw had piercings, face tattoos, and smoked cigarettes. I'm willing to give it a second chance... especially if I can get more of that Indian food!!