Jer and I decided to take a break and bus downtown on Sunday. Of course, we made this decision the Wednesday before, without imagining that Sunday would be Portland-in-November (ie 35 degrees and raining). We were going to walk to the Saturday Market, but as the cold wind started to make us shake, we veered off to the Bus 14 shelter. The bus was slow, but just as we spoke of going back home and getting the car, it arrived.
The brisk walk from the bus drop-off to the Saturday (craft) Market (also open on Sunday) was good; our fair city at its November funkiest:
The market was relatively quiet, which was nice because I found the pentatonic flute maker that I wasn’t really looking for <snort> and, of course, found a flute (an “E”) that I had to have. Not a bad price and a very nice bag, thrown in.
But it started to drizzle, and the market is somewhat outside, so we chucked the notion of finding a soup tureen (the ostensible reason for coming to the Saturday Market) and headed toward Powells — always a safe bet for a downtown outing. Even in the rain, we found Portland, well, weird:
I particularly like the “OPEN” sign (top, left) in the apartment building behind the Weird building. And in fact, the line-up in the drizzle was weird. These folks, including a bulldog behind the bike, were waiting to get their Voodoo doughnuts. Are they (the doughnuts, I mean) really worth it?
We got to Powell’s, I headed for the Pearl Room, which is both where the art books live and where fewer book mavens hover. Portlanders could feel winter’s onslaught , so apparently they all headed for Powell’s at the same time. I found a book I needed — well, I bought just the one book I really needed — and we wrapped our goodies (books, flute) inside our coats, put on our hats and gloves, and promptly missed Bus 20, which we thought we might take to Old Wives for a snack. Giving that over, we decided to grab the street car to Bus 15; we watched it go by from half a block away. By now the rain was raining real rain, cold rain, narsty rain.
We walked to Salmon Street to catch Bus 15, figuring that was warmer than huddling in a streetcar overhang. Bus 15 took its time getting there (we heard at least 3 cell conversations of the other person in the bus shelter), but it finally arrived:
The flute will take some practice and stretching of the tendons between the fingers (haven’t done that since I took piano lessons). But the book was instantly and deliciously accessible. And I can usually, sort of, hit the low note on the flute — it’s just a bit wonky — like my street scenes. –June