NB: I am composing these posts from Portland on an iPod. Please forgive all writing and formatting errors.
We crossed the Willamette River four times yesterday (Sunday, April 22). As the bridges connected places, we made many connections between people.
But let me start with a reminder about learning (and sometimes not) by failure. We let the eighth graders plan the trip, just like we did when they were in sixth and seventh grade. Of course, this year they’re without the class ahead of them. Our job as chaperones is to follow along and only step in if true danger becomes a concern. So, often our inexperienced planners and navigators make errors. That’s expected, as is the potential disappointment that can result. Well, today things didn’t go as planned. However, we didn’t really observe much disappointment.
The plan for the day was to catch the Portland State University women’s soccer team game, eat lunch at a grilled PB&J cart, travel the 4T Loop, and have dinner at Porque No. We didn’t do any of those things.
Here’s what actually happened:
We took the bus to see the game, but the field was empty. That’s because we ended up at the University of Portland campus, not PSU. Even PSU would have been a problem, since the game was being played at Concordia University. The details are important. Carwai’s friends planned to meet us for the game (using the location we provided), so we gave them a call and they showed up with a frisbee and soccer ball. That’s how we ended up playing, not watching soccer (and frisbee) with Tracy, Teal, Juan, and Camile.
The PB&J cart was closer to the hostel than the UofP, so we opted for food carts just a short bus ride away. After eating BBQ, Turkish food, and, funnel cake, we headed to the bus stop, but we’re first found by a few more of Carwai’s friends: Jennifer, Hannah, and Rowan. We had a short visit as we waited for the bus.
The 4T Loop plan was dropped after learning from one of my sisters, who live on the Oregon coast and with whom we were going to meet, that the Aerial Tram only runs on Sundays from May to September or October. So, we planned to meet them at the open air market under Burnside Bridge.
We arrived under the bridge and SURPRISE! my sisters showed up with my parents, who have been visiting them. We walked along the river and the eighth graders mined for details from my youth (too much to share here). Then we crossed the river to visit OMSI, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry.
After the museum, we crossed back using the same bridge. The car lanes were closed, so we were able to walk on the grate where they normally travel. (See the image above.)
We all (sisters and parents included) had dinner at Old Town Pizza, where we were joined by my friend Charlie Loyd, who shared his experience attending a 1-8 school of only fourteen students. (Beating the eighth graders’ small class of seven.) There was also a lot of info sharing with my parents and sisters. Thanks, Dad (probably won’t read this), for picking up the bill! Then we said our goodbyes and walked back to the hostel.
Oh, and it was HOT. So far the hottest day of the year here and a record temperature for this date, beating the previous champ from 1982. That was another reason for skipping the 4T Loop. Another potential record breaker is forecast for today.
I don’t think I can keep up this pace of iPod journaling, so don’t be disappointed in the much shorter posts to come.