Happy 92nd Birthday!
I love you!
And Mari, I haven’t forgotten. Happy Birthday to you, too.
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Our sweet borough decorations, strung along Lincoln Avenue, our main street. I love their charm and earnestness, their infectious cheer. Cheer that I, at various moments, need desperately. Moving is difficult, dear reader, more than I recalled. Not just the labor of it, the unpacking and sorting and organizing, the literal learning of territory, but the fiddly feeling of discombobulation, of being at a crossroads. I remain untethered, yet duty bound. This house is mine, ours, Milo’s, yet it is so much someone else’s. Whose, I do not know. It’s own, perhaps, biding it’s time, waiting patiently for our stamp, for pictures on the wall, a washer, a dryer, herbs in the garden. Singing. A clothesline strung in summer sun.
Then there is the greater, more complicated question of self. Me. Colleen Sohn. I do not wish to be the person I was in Portland, not wholly anyway. I am eager to shed the skin that held me back, that made friends with malcontents, drama queens, mile takers. And do what, you ask? Write more. Submit stories, poems, drawings, paintings. Be myself. Make friends and lose them when necessary. Rise to meet the sun, the clouds, the stars. Recognize my own value. Make money. Read more. Cook more. Exercise more. Love more. Stare fear in the eye and not blink.
Be the merry mighty light…
Block + Tackle
L O V E: Forever and All Ways.
A 1930′s Vintage Chevrolet. Beautiful!
Interurban – yumm…
Happy Tuesday, dear readers! I hope it is lovely where you are. We are in full autumn here in Stumptown, with cool mornings, rain, and golden sun from time to time. We are also in full “Oh my goodness, we are selling the house!” mode. Packing, planning, and getting G I A N T holes dug to repair the 83 year-old sewer in the time it took us to get a single large shrub in the ground. The wonder of backhoes!
Back when we decided to move, the hubster and I only fretted over telling one person, my Uncle Chris. He loves Portland dearly and has been our most frequent guest room occupant. He was disappointed, most definitely, but cool cat that he is, very understanding, too. New chapters are exciting! Then, much to our delight, he made arrangements to be our final visitor.
We could not have had a better time or better weather, either, warmth, sunshine, the best of good-byes.
We visited Bonneville Dam, which was truly fascinating. The giant grey object with rust drips is a turbine that had been in use for some 60 years, the wonders of engineering, and, quite likely, Pittsburgh Steel. Then there were the fish, heaps and tons doing their darndest, working their tails off (in some cases nearly literally) to make it through the rough waters of the ladder. Extraordinary! The previous day had a count of 30,000, and that is after running the gauntlet of fishing boats. Nature is bad ass!
A long walk to Block + Tackle, which, if you are a seafood and fish lover, get ye there! Everything pleases, fresh oysters, perfect calamari, a smoked mackerel sandwich, fish and chips, shrimp cocktail, oh my. The service was pretty spectacular, too. With nearly full bellies, we introduced him to the wonders of Salt & Straw (minus the line, what luck!), a slow, sweet saunter down Division in the light of the setting sun.
A most marvelous time was had by all. Next stop Pittsburgh, mon oncle!
awoke with the sun, to cuddles and the purring of cats.
ate every strawberry I picked.
set my abs and butt on fire with Cassey Ho. Silly and fun, she kills me every time!
mowed and fertilized, and plunged my hands into earthy compost.
heard the first steady hum of bees on blossoming lavender.
got bouquets, cards, and well wishes from friends and loved ones.
walked with the hubster, love of my life.
ate dinner to the Bee Gees, Hall & Oates, and Fleetwood Mac, and sang my heart out!
realized, in a weepy moment of gratitude, that the greatest gift I’ve recently received is that I am finally surrounded by MY people. I’ve shed the drama queens and gossips, the self-absorbed, the unkind, the ones who lack the common courtesy to call or email. My people are kind, caring, fascinating, fun, and super duper smart. We get each other. We love each other. We share all we have and all that we are.
A pretty terrific way to celebrate forty-three orbits around the sun!
Happy Cinco de Mayo! Which celebrates the Mexicans winning a war against the French, I think. But, like any other holiday, the celebrating comes down to food and drink. So some favorite Mexican food it is! This is at Taqueria Nueve, which I sorely missed during its five year absence, even though Tapalaya, also one of my favorite places, lives in its old location. In particular, the Coctel del Pulpo, a sweet and spicy bit of ambrosia, haunted me. I literally had dreams about it and sought a replacement hither and yon, to no avail. I am most grateful I can get it once more, along with a mighty fine chile relleno and vegetarian tacos. Arriba!
On to La Taq (no website, but next door to Podnah’s and from the same owner), which is really Tex-Mex, but, to me, Mexican food is all in the family. They have super green chile, fantastic tacos, and a pretty spectacular queso, too. Unfortunately my food photos are blurry, probably because I was too hungry and excited to sit still. The kindly bartender is shaking my margarita, my favorite in town, I might add, with the perfect balance of sour and sweet. It’s pretty snazzy!
And back to Mi Casa. The hubster and I had a serious New Mexican food craving yesterday, so we walked to the market for provisions and whipped up a feast. There was green chile, of course, brown rice, smoky garlicky beans, guacamole, and home made tortillas, rolled into gut busting burritos. All turned out muy, muy delicioso, though my Dad would probably be disappointed to learn that I didn’t have any meat in mine. The older I get, the more vegetarian my leanings. Life is full of surprises!
P.S. I almost forgot! Have you tried Xochitl chips? Oh my goodness, they are the best. Thin and crispy, just like the package says and seriously good! A chip gone to heaven and back, maybe. The only problem? I feel like I’m cheating on the glistening chips made in Hood River with these Texas Wranglers. Sorry!
I’m Colleen Sohn.
Born a Gemini, which is more important than you’d think, I am a bit silly, love yoga, eating, dancing, music, and good stories, because bad ones are a bummer.
Thanks for being here…