Portland seems to be a city that has a spirit different from the other cities that I have visited so far, here in the United States. They seem to abhor fast food restaurants, and Starbucks closes around 6 PM, unlike Seattle, who is addicted to coffee. Portland is very eclectic and Bohemian, and feels like one huge college town.
So last Sunday, I went up to the hills on the northwest side of the city, and hiked the trails. My feet ached, but the good thing was that I was wearing gel soles in my shoes which made it bearable. Good thing gel soles were invented. I visited the Japanese Garden, and also the Rose Test Gardens. I have never seen so much roses in my entire life. The whole place was blooming and smelling great.
It seems that Portland has a mind of its own, and strives to be different from the other cities in the country. I still cannot put my finger on it, but one can feel it. I liked both cities that I visited, but I think I can imagine myself living in Seattle more than in Portland.
Anyway, so Monday evening, I started to find my way back home. I had an itinerary of three flights going back, flying from Portland to San Francisco to Washington DC to Buffalo. The flights didn't have any problem at all, but given the fact that it was a red-eye flight, I only caught a fraction of sleep.
So now here I am back in Buffalo. I have work to do, but also I have photo albums to upload, a book review to write, and plenty of other things. Tomorrow is the annual welcome party for the new people in the department, and I am making a couscous paella that only involves vegetables. Yes, I am back to being a vegetarian, since I am not in vacation anymore. In fact, I loved the fact that I stopped eating meat and doing exercise again, since when I bought a T-shirt as a souvenir for myself in Seattle, I was able to fit in a medium! Ha!