Oblique Coffee House SE Portland, Oreogn: Music – Lana del Ray

I want to write about how cool of a time I’m having in PDX since arriving yesterday afternoon, but I know I ‘need’ to write about some things more personally urgent (but may not want on the blog). For example, I need to really hash out what I believe in. I need to practice getting a little deeper in my writing, perhaps so that I might be more articulate in spoken word/conversations with others about the status of the world and what we can do to change things.  I’ll do that writing separately though and then evaluate it’s relevance to RoamandWrite.  Because it’s coming up as I roam, it’s appropriate, however sometimes we just need to write for ourselves.  I feel like I’m ready to level up in my written presentation. My writer identity is ready to come forth, to break through the surface and superficial and keep my thoughts penetrating.  I tend to stop when I hit a block.

When I can’t find the right word or even if I’m thinking so damn fast that it all gets jumbled in my head, so putting is out is confusing, or incoherent, or just plain shallow in appearance.

So these are things I need to write on. But for right now I’ll just talk about my travel and state of mind a bit, til I’m ready to share the other stuff.

First, I have to say Lana del Ray is freaking awesome. I’ve heard of her, of course…she’s making waves but I didn’t really know her work til last night, and now she’s on at the coffee shop and it’s pretty much exactly what I want to be hearing.

It’s been fun in Portland.  Have I mentioned that I LOVE wandering around? Even though I lived here for a quick minute, there is so much of this city  I just don’t know. A person could spend a lifetime just finding the nooks and crannies of a city like this; of this city. I’m happy to find them every now and hten when I reappear. I’m liking being a traveler with my world on my back. It feels awesome and free. Maybe you’re sick of hearing that…but not being restricted, confined to a house and all the things that go in them…at least right now it’s right.

Co-Ops Rock!
Co-Ops Rock!

When I got to Portland (after a stellar scenic bus ride through the Columbia Gorge) I took the rail and walked to a friend’s house for some hanging, and then she drove me to another friends’ place where I stayed last night. I slept really well and long but could still sleep more.  We went to a nearby park and harvested loads of perfectly ripe Hawthorne berries and Rosehips!! I LOVE that I had the chance to do this, especially with her. She was one of those first herbalists I met in Eugene years ago.  When I get to Euegene tomorrow I’m gonna make some brandy and a vinegar extract.  How fortuitous to be in the right place at the right time with the right person to get an abundant harvest of two of my most beloved plant allies!! I don’t even care about the extra weight!

Hawthorne Berries! Crataegus spp.
Hawthorne Berries! Crataegus spp.

I got dropped off on her way to work and made my way to Red and Black, a worker owned cafe/safe space/anarchist info shop, but was sad to find it closed for the day. I’m hoping to connect with these folks because they have great resources for getting people to health care providers (from all disciplines) and this is something I hope to get going upon my return to Richmond. There is much to learn from them so I hope they’ll respond to my inquiry.

So I decided to walk back towards my friends house and look for another cafe, and on the way I scored a 100% wool sweater in the same color blue as my eyes, for a buck! I can’t wait to wear it, hopefully in California.

Rosehips! Rosa canina
Rosehips! Rosa canina

I’ve got about 4 hours to chill out or explore or whatever til Dr. Dre (she’s a doctor named Dre so that’s what I call her!) gets off work.  I’ll have to the hay kinda early cuz in the am I take a Bolt Bus to Eugene. Never heard of it til I got to the PNW but I guess its a super cheap and more awesome version of Greyhound.

Burdock seed pods?! Arctium lappa
Burdock seed pods?! Arctium lappa

I’m pretty stoked to go to Eugene. I’ll only have time to see 2 or 3 people, but it is hands down my favorite city in the US., and part of my heart will always reside there. I moved there when I was 23 after graduating from college and realizing I needed to leave home and start finding myself out.  I always thought I would move back to Eugene when I left, but I guess it’s just not where I’m supposed to be now/yet.  However I love any chance I get to be there, to smell the air, kiss my friends, have a Ninkasi and some Sweet Life, and just roll around in the pleasant nostalgia of that small town.  No longing or unhealthy attachment, just a really good memory of a place that was crucial to my development.

Anyway, I’ll write more tomorrow.


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