I caught a cab to the girls' house shortly before noon. Brooke was at work and Suzanne was still in Michigan for a few more days. But their other roommate, Lori, was there to greet me and let me in. It didn't take long for me to find the couch and crash. I got a few good hours of nap time in before evening rolled around.
Brooke, Lori, and I went out to dinner and one of the first things I noticed was that the restaurant/bar didn't have Miller Lite (something I would get used to for the remainder of the trip). So I ordered up a PBR (something else I would get used to). Afterwards, we went back to the house, hung out for a bit, and went to sleep. I kept trying to tell myself that I wasn't tired, but I was out before I knew it.
Day 2: Wednesday, February 18th
I woke up at 5am. I got up and went to the bathroom, crawled back into bed, and tried to go back to sleep. But it was no use. I was wide awake. I laid there with my headphones on for a good two hours just looking at the ceiling. I finally got out of bed around 7am and headed downstairs. I laid on the couch watching tv for a while, dozing in and out. I could hear Brooke's alarm going off in the distance. After she left for work, I finally mustered up the energy to hop in the shower.
I decided to go for a walk. So I put my headphones on and made my way down the street. I came across a nice little park and it was definitely good weather for a stroll, but I was more in the mood for coffee. So I kept walking and found a quaint little coffee shop just another block away. I sat and read the newspaper for a while and after a couple cups and one huge cookie, I left and went back to the house.
In the afternoon, Lori and I headed downtown to check out Powell's Bookstore. I'd never heard of the place, but I quickly discovered its awesomeness. Covering an entire city block and four stories high, they had just about every book I could think to look for. They sell new and used, and will also buy your old books. I ended up getting three Irvine Welsh books for the price of one new one. Can't beat that. From there, we grabbed a late lunch and headed back across the river.
By now, it was evening and time to go drinking. We walked down the street to a place called O'Malleys. It was a typical dive bar, which I am totally a fan of---no crowds, no loud crappy music. Plus, they had free pool. After a few games and a pitcher of PBR, we split.
As we were walking, I was amazed at the number of dive bars on that street alone. I thought I was in heaven. We ended up at a place called Devil's Point, which isn't a dive bar so much as it is a strip club. I'll spare the details, but you can definitely call me a fan of that place. Brooke showed up later that night and I hitched a ride home with her. We got back to the house, hung out for a bit, and called it quits for the day.
Day 3: Thursday, February 19th
I was relieved to wake up and see that the sun was actually out. This meant that I slept through the night. I looked at the clock and it was 8:30am. I got up, took a shower, and decided to go for another walk. I headed back down to the coffee shop. From there, I took the long way back to the house and walked a little more. I spent the majority of the day lying on the couch, watching tv, and napping. It was nice.
When Brooke got home from work, the two of us went out to grab some dinner. We went to this mexican place and I can't really describe it other than it was bright. Gotta love mexican decor. Oh, and the food was excellent.
When we got back to the house, we ended up playing Wii bowling for hours. I've never tried a Wii before, but I was instantly hooked. I was doing pretty well for the most part, but after a gazillion games, I think I actually started to get physically tired. That's pathetic.
Suzanne was flying back from Michigan that night and I offered to go pick her up. So I hopped in her car and went to the airport around 11pm. The place was a madhouse, but I eventually found her and we made it back. We sat up for a while just shooting the shit and eventually called it a night around 2am.
Day 4: Friday, February 20th
I didn't really sleep. I'd call it more of a nap. My phone rang right on time at about 5:30am. It was Clint and his flight had just landed. I slipped my shoes on, got into Brooke's car, and headed back to the airport. Thankfully, it wasn't nearly as crowded.
When we got back to the house, I was already wide awake. So we just sat around talking and catching up. Not long after, Suzanne came down the stairs and the three of us just hung out for a while. We went and ate breakfast at some hippie joint down the road.
We sat around the house for a while waiting for the rest of the guys to roll into town. Bru and Eric showed up at the house around 1 or 2pm. We all went to grab some lunch before heading off the the hotel to check in.
When we got to the hotel, we were very pleased. Clint had done a good job of picking it out. The location was good and the rooms were really nice. We all just laid around for a while trying to sneak in a nap. Then it was off to the airport to pick up Jason.
When we all finally rounded up, we hit the streets in search of food and drink. I stopped at an ATM machine first only to discover that my debit card was missing! After searching my pockets to no avail, I gave it a little more thought. I called the restaurant where we had lunch and sure enough, I left it there. Whew!
After an overly filling dinner, we headed to a place called Life Of Riley. It was a great little bar with a basement area, filled with tables, pool tables, shuffleboard, and Golden Tee. We pretty much drank and played Golden Tee the entire night. Bru and Clint wussed out after a while and went back to the hotel because they both had "tummy aches." They both earned nicknames as a result, which I won't mention due to an over sense of vulgarity. Anyway, Jason, Eric, and I stuck around until closing just drinking and playing more Golden Tee. Every place in Portland also has these video slot machines which are run by the state lottery. I put a dollar in and selected the penny slot game and wouldn't you know it, my dollar turned into 18 dollars. I printed out the ticket voucher and it was as good as cash at the bar, so we had one last round before heading out.
We walked back to the hotel and pretty much found it by chance. Bru and Clint were already in bed, so us three drunken fools just had to wake them up. I hopped into Bru's bed and tried to kick him off, but he grabbed me by the ankles and yanked me right off the bed. I fell about two feet straight to the ground and landed square on my tailbone. Ouch.
I went downstairs for one last smoke, and for some reason I just started walking. By the time I was done, I realized that I had no idea where I was. So I started walking some more trying to retrace my steps, but I just got more lost. I eventually made it back though.
As I was in the bathroom getting ready for bed, I was taking my contacts out and one of them fell right down the drain. That sucked. I had already lost a pair at the girls' house and was using a spare set that I had brought with me. Now I was down to wearing my twelve-year-old pair of glasses.
Now, the bathroom was situated right by the door to the room, and for some reason I walked out of the bathroom and just decided to go to sleep right there on the floor.
Day 5: Saturday, February 21st
We woke up the next morning, got our showers, and headed out for some breakfast. Afterwards, we all hopped in the soccer mom mobile and headed up to Mt. Hood. I won't deny the beauty of the mountains, the trees, and all the snow, but I'm not really into snowboarding or skiing. Maybe some day, though.
So the rest of the guys did their thing. I wandered around the lodge trying to find a bar. I eventually did, so I sat down, ordered up some drinks, and put my headphones on. After about an hour or so, I was feeling pretty tired and intoxicated. So I went back to the van and took a nap. It was bright as day when I fell asleep, then Clint comes knocking and rocking the van back and forth (which scared the crap out of me) and when I finally came to, it was pitch black dark outside. I looked at the clock and I'd been asleep for at least two hours.
We made our way back to the city around 8pm and got back to the hotel shortly before 10pm. By this time, I was ready to hit the streets again. We decided to head to the other side of town to see what was up over there. We came across a few bars---one Irish pub that was packed and charged a cover that none of us wanted to pay, another place that was so packed that they shut the doors and wouldn't let anyone else in, and another bar that was charging a cover for a band that I can only imagine was pretty lousy. We eventually found a place on the corner that was relatively small, not too crowded, free, and not so noisy. My kinda place. We started out with a couple pitchers of microbrews. I'm not a fan of microbrews really. They all taste the same to me---bitter and hoppy. So we traded those in for a few pitchers of PBR. Brooke and Suzanne met up with us a little later. Not too long after, though, they announced last call, but it was only 1am. So we went back next door. By then, the band had finished playing and admission was free.
Ok, so this night went by like a blur. I don't really remember too much in particular. I remember it being fun and I remember drinking a lot. That's about it. Luckily, the girls had cameras, so the night was at least visually captured. (click here for pictures)
Since both Brooke and Suzanne were both wasted, they spent the night at our hotel. The walk back seemed like it took forever. There were so many people out on the streets after closing that it was hard not to just stop and randomly talk to someone. We hung out in the room for a while, passing out one by one. I started rough housing with Bru again and eventually ended up on my back. No big deal. Then he gave me his hand to help me up, I took it, and he pulled so hard that I literally went flying across the room. When I landed, I rolled my left ankle so bad that I could have sworn that I heard it break, or at least tear. Not fun. It instantly began to swell and walking around was even more laboring. I hobbled downstairs with Brooke for one last smoke. Then we went back up and went to bed. After about ten minutes, I heard her fall out of bed, stumble to the bathroom, and then puke. That was about the last thing I remember.
Day 6: Sunday, February 22nd
Pretty much everyone woke up the next morning with a massive hangover. It was time to grab some breakfast, but my ankle had gotten so stiff overnight that I wasn't going anywhere. So I stayed behind. I managed to get myself across the street to at least get some coffee, but I laid in bed for the most part.
After detoxing for a good part of the afternoon, it was time for me to head to the airport and fly back east. On the way, we made a quick stop at the girls' house. My contacts had been found. So I picked them up, said goodbye to Brooke and Lori, and my time in Portland was done.
The trip back was horrific, filled with delays and long walks across airport terminals. But amazingly, I somehow made it back to Virginia on time.