A Portland Sort of Birthday

Jessica (left) and I enjoying a view of Portland’s Willamette River

Every year around this time, my birthday happens.

And as it happens, this year I’m spending half of my birthday week in my favorite American city, Portland, Oregon, with my dear friend Jessica. She lives here, which never ceases to delight me. See, I discovered my love for Portland in 2006…but I didn’t discover Jessica until 2009.

On this trip, we’ve so far wandered the Eola-Amity Hills Wine Route in the Willamette Valley (I highly recommend a stop at the Dobbes Family Estate) found some spectacular fall leaves, and enjoyed the meal of the gods: Ike’s Vietnamese Fish Sauce Wings from Pok Pok. Tonight, I’m looking forward to feeling a real chill in the air and breaking out my first sweater of the season.

In the time Jess and I have left this week, we might take a drive to peer out over the Columbia Gorge, amble up to a food cart or two, crack open a bottle of Argyle Pinot Noir, and settle in for a while with our laptops at a French restaurant which features both Kir Royales and free Wi-Fi. We’ll also mull over future Oregon trips, like one to mineral-blue Crater Lake and another to the pink-tinged Strawberry Range.

But most importantly? We’ll be enjoying each other’s company, catching up on stories, listening to some good music, talking back to her meowing cats, and taking a few minutes to notice that autumn is settling in all around us. 

Getting older isn’t so bad when friends are along for the journey.


  1. Happy Birthday week! I too try to spend my birthday in a city I love with my favorite people. Sounds like a great week!

  2. Happy Birthday! Greeting from me Mike. Portland Oregon seems very exciting to visit that you fell in love with the City. You had a good birthday with Jessica. Continue your friendship. It’s so nice of you both.

  3. I visited Portland many years ago as a young kid visiting my Aunt and believe it or not, I still remember our trip to the beautiful Pacific Ocean and the giant redwood trees….I was taken back and would love to trek out there again soon. Also, I couldn’t agree more about your comment on friendship. Friends are what keep us motivated and keep life interesting!

  4. Happy Birthday

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