Aaaand we’re back. Hard to believe that I woke up Monday morning on one side of the continent and then I went to sleep at night on the complete opposite side of the continent. Four airports in four different states/provinces and two different countries, and a four-and-a-half-hour time difference later and here we are in St. John’s again.
The trip was GREAT. Doodle and the Cyclist got married and we were so happy to be able to be a part of their beautiful day. The weather was awesome, if a little hot, and nothing went horribly wrong. And I got a new camera out of it. What more could you ask for?
When we arrived in Portland, the Cyclist picked us up and took us to the apartment he and Doodle share, where Doodle was in the midst of getting her wedding mehndi done. Mehndi, if you didn’t know, is that lovely temporary henna tattoo that goes on your hands and feet. You can read more about it here.
We crashed and burned at this point, having been up for what felt like forever, and Doodle went to bed with toilet paper on her arms to protect the design. This is the next day, when the Cyclist helped her scrape off the dried henna paste with a credit card. You can see that the design is a bright orange at first, and it will darken over the next few days.
That first day the Pie and I wandered about and tested out the new camera a bit. This is a shot of him actually smiling (sort of), which is rare in photos I take of him. Normally he just looks grumpy.
Portland is famous for its many bridges that cross the Columbia and Willamette Rivers. This is the Steel Bridge, one of my favourites.
And the Freemont, which is Doodle’s favourite.
Portland is also an interesting mix of old and new. I love old business advertisements painted on the brick buildings.
At this point the other bridesmaids started to arrive, and we surprised Doodle with a dinner at Jake’s with all her female crew from town.
Next day we set off for manicures and pedicures in the morning (my first experience, and I may well be addicted now) and then back to Doodle’s place for mehndi in the afternoon. Here is Sam, one of the bridesmaids, getting her henna on.
What a beautiful job!
The artist, for those of you in the Portland area, is Wendy Rover of Roving Horse Henna and she was lovely. I think you have to be lovely if you are hanging over someone’s body for the better part of an hour.
Here’s me getting mine done.
And the final result:
In case you’re wondering, getting this stuff done is a very pleasant experience. Wendy mixes tea tree oil and all sorts of goodies into her henna paste, so it feels cool and refreshing on your skin, not itchy at all. Of course, you have to leave it on for several hours, and you can’t bend your fingers in case the drying paste cracks. So it makes things interesting when you are trying to do things later on in the day. The Pie managed to shoe horn me into one of his new hoodies (we went to the Nike employee store and took advantage of a deep discount and Oregon’s tax-freeness, hence my full Nike attire) and we got some ice cream to eat in the sun. This was when I discovered that eating ice cream while exposing henna to the sun is a good way to make it all fall off.
I also made the mistake of discovering my new favourite store, Cargo Imports. They specialize in new and old Chinese imports. I may have purchased some things. The Pie was particularly taken with the sinks made of petrified wood.
And I loved the hundreds of tiny apothecary bottles in a big glass case.
And then I had to go and pet a corgi puppy. His name is Winston.
Which meant that by the time we got back to the apartment my henna paste was a lost cause.
So this is what it looks like when the paste is scraped off.
And it will darken, and look lovely and brown.
The day before the wedding, we took Doodle on her “bachelorette,” which was a tour of three local wineries.
This first place was where Doodle and the Cyclist got engaged.
This was indeed a tire swing.
And an absolutely enormous cookie. I saved half for the Pie.
And this is Mount Hood. I’ve been there.
And some more barrels.
And some vines. No grapes yet.
It was a beautiful sunshiny day and pretty much all of us (Doodle excluded) got a sunburn.
Then before we knew it, it was the wedding day!
First we had our hair done …
… and then our makeup. Doodle of course didn’t need much — she is a very beautiful lady.
Here’s a closeup of Doodle’s henna, nice and dark.
Then it was off to the World Forestry Center to get ready for pictures and the ceremony itself.
We did pictures before the ceremony to save time, but first Doodle was dressed in traditional kimono by an old friend of her mother’s.
While she was being photographed outside, the Cyclist arrived with his posse. We ran interference and made him cover his face so he wouldn’t see her before he was supposed to.
Then it was time for the wedding dress.
We all took a turn at the laces, but Sam did it the best.
And then things started to get busy and I had to be photographed as well so this is my last photo of the wedding.
But it was such a great experience. I’ve known Doodle since we were fourteen, so it was really neat to see her all grown up and to see how fantastic she and the Cyclist are together, and to meet all her really nice West coast friends. Sorry, I’m gushing. I’ll stop now.
On our final day in Portland we decided to check out the Portland Pride Parade, and it was a really good day for it. Not hot like the day before, but warm enough that everyone, even those who were scantily clad, was comfortable.
I must have taken two hundred photos of the parade, which was fantastic. You can see more of them on my Flickr page starting here. It was really nice to see so many religious groups out in support of their parishioners.
The old cars were something to see.
As were the costumes.
And there were so many colours!
This flag in particular caught my eye. I am thinking of making a DIY out of something similar.
And so many loving families out and about. I think this is my favourite photo of the bunch.
What a great trip. The Pie and I can’t wait to go back!