Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Most Frequent Visitors Award

My friends Ross and Hannah have visited Portland not once, not twice, not just three times, but four times since I’ve lived here. I would like to officially award the VanDykes with the “Most Frequent Visitor Award.” This award is given to a couple who have used vacation days, spent money on flights, and traveled thousands of miles multiple times to visit their dear Pacific Northwest friends. They completely fit the Portland scene (well, Hannah’s accent does stick out like a bear in a flock of ducks) and I might even consider then honorary Portlanders. Shoot, they might as well just move here!
They arrived in Portland via Vancouver BC on a train two weekends ago. We had so much fun spending time together and doing non-touristy Portland things. We of course started with a progressive dinner the first night: The Bagdad, Hair of the Dog Brewery, The Montage, and Dig-a-Pony. Saturday was a wonderfully sunny day. Hannah and I strapped the kayaks on top of my car and headed out to Sauvie Island where we found a peaceful lake with an incredible view of Mount St Helens. We got lunch at a burger shack on the island, found some fresh raspberries and then headed back into town.


We met up with the boys at The MAC where Drew works as the rock climbing coach. We put on our harnesses, roped up and scaled the walls of the club. Talk about a good workout. And Hannah was a total natural. That night we hit up Deschutes Brewery for dinner and then walked to Salt and Straw where we waited in line for 30 minutes to get delicious ice cream.

Sunday morning, Hannah helped me out in the two-year-olds classroom at Imago – what a great friend! Then we met up with Ross and Drew for lunch at the Screen Door. We all split chicken and waffles (which I’ve never had but always wanted to try). I have to say, that was probably the best friend chicken I’ve ever had. Aaamazing. Saturday afternoon we all put on our green and white and became part of the Timbers Army (see previous post).

Drew's "I'm full and happy" pose
Ross and Hannah left in a rental car on Monday morning for a little road trip (Bend, Hood River, Rainier) and then were back in Portland on Thursday night so that we could keep the Portland party going.  Friday was bring-your-adult-friend-to-work day, so Hannah came to my office to tour the exhibit, meet my coworkers and organize my auction storage closet for me. Again, what a great friend! We headed back out to Sauvie Island on Friday afternoon to lay on the beach – it was so nice and warm! We met up with the guys again for dinner at Pok Pok where we had the country’s best wings. Sadly our week of pretending that the VanDykes lived in Portland had to come to an end. After eating breakfast at The Big Egg cart on Saturday morning, I dropped them off at the airport and they flew back to their real home of Waco, TX.

after a while, I made Hannah start earning her keep
I’m hoping that they will show back up this weekend and we can keep adventuring around Portland together, but I guess I’ll just have to wait for their next epic trip up here (which I know will happen again!). Thanks again for being my most frequent visitors, Ross and Hannah!  Can't wait for you to make the move up North someday!

True Friends
There are so many different and wonderful things that make Ross and Hannah such wonderful friends.  One of the things that stuck out most to me on this trip is how likeable they are!  They got to meet many of my friends while they were here and every one of my friends commented about how wonderful they were.  Ross and Hannah aren't just friendly people, they are seriously fun to be around.  They can not only get along with anyone and make people feel comfortable, they engaged my friends with great questions (sometimes a little too personal too soon, Ross) and actually wanted to get to know the people who are a part of my life up here.  Thanks for teaching me how to be a good friend and leading by example, Ross and Hannah!

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