After a “day off”, feel renewed.
A young woman bows her head and checks out her bicycling helmet before answering “Me”, to my query of who’s reading Lawrence Durrell’s “Bitter Lemons”. She’s a bit prouder, more sure of herself, when she answers “The Alexandria Quartet” to a follow-up about whether she’s read other Durrell. Her two biking partners watch us, tennis-game style, as we compare opinions about how difficult a “read” his “AQ” is. Encourage her toward “Sicilian Carousel” and “Prospero’s Cell” as well as DH Lawrence’s “Sea and Sardinia”. (Go away muttering under my breath, over her breadth).
Now that we’ve got our geography squared away, head out for brunch with Sandra Ford. (Sandra came into my life a few years back when a mutual friend, Teri Roney, invited me to write a letter supporting a petition involving Sandra’s son).
May have “mis-identified” location of Kenny and Zuke’s… it’s NOT Nob Hill.
Actually, this neighborhood (out around 22nd and Thurman, for you who know Portland), has a look about it that suggests it was once industrial, and that a blue-collar work force lived in close proximity to job. Its housing retains that look, but a younger, more affluent population occupies its streets and coffee houses.
Park near a Conway Truck building,and, walking up Thurman, notice a middle-aged man with a crew-cut, reading his newspaper while sitting on his concrete stoop, some 30′ from his wooden stairs and porch. Throw him a careless salute, which stimulates a perfect military salute in return. At my pause, he, in a flowing movement, is on his feet, heels together, shoulders back (which creates a mirror image in me), and with a precision dating back over fifty years (for me), we exchange salutes as formally as we might have on any military base. “Semper Fi”, he calls out to my retreating back.
As it’s Bastille Day, a place down from Kenny & Zuke has a small band, and hear strains of France’s national anthem. (Do we still stand for anthems of foreign countries?).
THIS Kenny & Zuke’s bears little resemblance to it’s downtown “name-alike”. This one is F-U-N-K-Y!!! (It has a huge interior volume which may once have been an industrial bakery.)
Conversation with Sandra carries on for several hours. We cover all the “taboo” subjects (religion; politics; etc.) as well as family, personal history, and anything which pops into mind. Sandra is comfortable with her opinions: she knows which one’s she’s thought out carefully, and those which emerge from “gut reactions”. She’s comfortable also, with competing ideas, which adds subtlety to our conversation.
Driving away, notice St Patrick’s Historical Church. Notice doors are open, but on closer inspection realize there’s a wedding going on. A SUNDAY wedding… will wonders never cease?
Head down to Milwaukie as, rumor has it, a local eatery has a real, World War II bomber out in their parking lot. Whodda guessed?
Note: there are no additional photos.