After leaving Parkdale, Oregon in the Mount Hood Valley, I book a Japanese influence apartment on Airbnb for a couple of nights in the Boise area of Portland. It’s close to the interstate and in an older neighborhood. The tree-lined street is steep. I find a parking space near the house. Checking my emergency brake and making sure the wheels are turned, I get out of the car and walk to the house. The stone steps are a bit quirky in size and height but I manage to get to the door. The owner, David is there to meet me and shows me the apartment.
Even though it’s the lower level, there is plenty of natural sunlight from the large windows overlooking the patio. From the wooden eaves to the sliding rice bamboo door to the various species of wood used throughout the home, one can see the Japanese influence. I love the handcrafted architectural details throughout the home, especially how natural sunlight light bounces off the light-colored wood creating a peaceful feeling.
David takes pride in his work as a craftsman. He has created a work of art. We chat for a bit and end up on the subject of horses. We both own horses. He offers me a horseback ride where he boards his horse on Savoie Island which is 10 miles from Portland. I take him up on it. We set it up for the following afternoon. I’m looking forward to riding again.
After settling in, I walk around the neighborhood and find the Historic N. Mississippi Ave, which is a block over. It has an eclectic mix of old and new buildings with architectural diversity. There are many boutique retail stores, eateries, bars, and art galleries. I’m not a shopper but I like to window shop and I stop and peer into the looking-glass.
It feels as though I’ve walked for hours and my stomach is starting to grumble. I look at my phone, it’s close to 5, time to find food and a place to chill. As I walk, I see a blue painted building with white window trim. A stained glass sign above reads Mississippi. It has an old world charm. There are a few outdoor tables and a funky post and beam structure near the street. I like it. As I enter the establishment and look around. An old wooden order counter sits in the center of the large room. The open kitchen is in the left rear corner of the room. Mauve color booths with wooden tables line the walls while café style square wooden tables are between the counter and booths.
I order a small 12″ pepperoni and pineapple pizza, my favorite. The tangy sweetness of pineapple and the spicy cured meat are a perfect combination of sweet and spicy. I top it off with a beer. Something about pizza and beer that go together. It’s overcast and in the mid 50’s, not too cold. I decide to sit outside in the fresh air and enjoy the food, while I people watch.