When we came off the train, eager to get our Portland visit underway, we dragged our luggage and our vague, confused understanding of the bus system to a promising corner, where we were confronted with a hostile and confrontative man, troubled by his own thoughts, or some substance. That was stressful, disorienting, and so it's no wonder that when we finally hauled ourselves into the bus, we forgot to pay the fare. No one said a thing. The bus was packed... literally standing room only, and at every stop, we were like a puzzle with one missing square so that every piece had to be shifted around to let someone off, let more people board. It's not possible to be unobtrusive with three suitcases, wearing large coats, backpacks, standing through rush hour traffic with miles to travel, along unfamiliar roads. One woman muttered a grievance about our thorny predicament, not sympathetically. But everywhere else were kind expressions, understanding nods, solicitude. Slowly, the traffic relented, seats freed up, and I could breath a bit easier, and from the bus driver? Nothing. Had he noticed? Would he admonish us, bark a harsh rebuke? Geoff and I were able to whisper an exchange, a plan to pay before stepping off, apologizing for the oversight of taking a free ride. At the corner, about 24th and Knott, we gathered our lot, assured Maria that everything is fine, we're almost there, and then we tumbled onto the sidewalk... Geoff ran up to the driver's door, with our fare. The driver waved casually, "Pay at the next bus." No judgement, no recrimination, as though the expectation is that everything will come out fine in the end, there will be enough, if we just come together, make room, share. And it did... on our last bus ride out, I paid a double fare, gladly. It was weird, those bus rides, uncomfortable moments, and beautiful exchanges, but it was always honest, and I like that... the forthright integrity, the candidness. We are all going somewhere, what good is it to make it any harder for anyone to get there?
Upstairs Basement, Quality Surplus.
Village Merchants, Delightful Resale.
Pink Martini's Je Dis Oui!
Salt & Straw... where we sampled Sea Salt w/ Caramel Ribbons, Honey Lavender, Chocolate Gooey Brownie, Coffee, Strawberry Honey Balsamic w/ Black Pepper, and Freckled Woodblock Chocolate.
With Infinity More Monkeys, a picture a day.