Head out in a slightly different direction: decide to wander about in Nob Hill.
Am a bit familiar with 21st, as it’s the closest shopping to NW hostel, but know little of the side streets. V-E-R-R-Y toney: nice homes; impressive apartment complexes, upscale eateries. (By accident, stumble across “The Irving”. Gus van Zant used it in “Drugstore Cowboy”).
Pass through The Pearl, and pause at huge Union Station, and take a look at their Railway Museum. Sadly, this area where Greyhound, Amtrak and Metro come together seems home to legions of dispossessed.
At the waterfront, a touching tribute to those Japanese-Americans interned in World War II reminds me of a morning near Jerome/UT where busloads of those interned brought generations of family back to what is now mostly empty fields. (One irony learned that day: as Utah farms near Jerome lost young men to be drafted, Japanese-American internees helped out, and, decades long bonds were cemented).
Wander over toward University, and find Ira Keller Fountain converted into a “splash” pool” for adults. After a usual dialogue about pictures, Sam’s response to “The Question” surprises me: “Decide what a ‘marriage’ IS. We’re not even sure my partner can handle all the death arrangements, let alone have access to any benefits”. He’s not comfortable with my idea of gender-independent classes with comparable legal benefits: ‘marriage’ (any ritual blessed by a religious ceremony) and ‘civil union’ (any ritual performed under purely secular auspices). “Too complicated, in terms of EXISTING relationships” he replies “just provides a field day for lawyers”.
Plans to lunch with Sandra Ford fall through, as we learn later, because MY Kenny and Zuke’s (very courteous spot in its own right: delicious food, delightful service… “downtown” pricey) is near Portland’s city center, and hers up in Nob Hill.
Anna is crestfallen: she’s “under-budgeted” and run out of funds. “Gils’ introduce me to Skype, as, nonplussed Anna re-arranges her flight plans from Portland/ME (where she ain’t) to Portland/OR (where she IS) in order to fly back to Atlanta. She’s a model of diplomacy when asked how airlines confused same-named cities on opposite coasts.
NOTE: more Portland photos at 2012-07-12 – Portland/OR