T/Blues: 07/12/2012

Head out in a slightly different direction: decide to wander about in Nob Hill.

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Nob Hill: The Irving – “Drugstore Cowboy” site

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”).

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River District: Union Station

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.

Old Town – Chinatown: Japanese-American Historical Plaza – Poem Garden (WW II Detention memorial)

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).

Waterfront: Ira Keller Fountain – “cool, clear, water”

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

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