Friday, July 27, 2007

Good Friends, Good Food, Good Times!

They look like they belong in Portland, don't they?

My friends Tina and Sam are in town for the weekend for a wedding, and they graciously carved out an extra day in their itinerary to hang out with your humble author (all right, maybe "author" is too strong a word, but anyway...).

I've known Tina since the summer of 1984. We met at Crystal Lake in Northern Michigan, when we were both in our early teens, that time in life when one discovers things such as cheap beer and Echo and the Bunnymen. We made a pretty instant connection, and stayed in touch through the ensuing years. Living in different states, we were pretty much pen-pals for most of that time, and regularly sent each other epic fifty pagers. In fact, it wasn't until 2004 that we again saw each other in person. And on those all too rare occasions when we do meet up, it's as though no time has been lost at all!

I've known Sam for almost twelve hours. And I've got to say... I approve of the guy. He's a fellow food nerd, and stikes me as a pretty right on cat. If anyone's right for Tina, I'd say it's this guy. And hey, anyone who can rock the Zappa 'stache like that is okay in my book!

The three of us spent the afternoon exploring my neighborhood. We started with coffee to go at the Chance of Rain Cafe, and had a nice stroll up and down Hawthorne blvd, people watching, window gawking, sun dodging... I think I gave them a pretty good look at one of the better parts of our beloved city, although the full package would have included at least one awkward run-in with a schizophrenic homeless person. Oh well, maybe next time...

We then headed back to my place, and I plied the two of them with the good stuff: local wine, spanish cheese, olives, and some really nice marcona almonds... And of course, paella, cooked on the grill. Jenni showed up, and we all enjoyed some good conversation over tasty vittles in my back yard.

After dinner, we took a field trip to Zenger Farm to put the chickens to bed. Unfortuately, by this point Tina, Sam and Jenni were all too wiped out to make it for a pint at the Moon and Sixpence. But John the Irishman, John the Welshman and I managed to cover it.

It was really great to catch up with these two. They're wonderful folks. Thanks, Tina and Sam, for stopping by! Enjoy the wedding. And give my regards to that unspecified area of the country in which you live...


Trisha said...

Aren't you suppposed to see a methadone clinic to get the true Portland experience?

tommy said...

We actually drove by one on the way to the coffee shop.

Dr. Virago said...

Dude, you didn't point out the methadone clinic?! What kind of tour guide *are* you?! :)

Seriously, thanks for the fabulous welcome to the Rose City. The meal, the tour, and the company were awesome.

Oh, and I've been meaning to tell you that I never could find you a K'zoo snow globe when I was there, which is why I showed up without one. But to make it up to you, I figure out some nice thank-you present to send your way.

Thanks for being a great host!

(And yeah, I'm totally outing my "secret identity" here. Shhhhh!)

tommy said...

Dr. Virago, if that is your real name...

It was great to see you guys, and to meet your better half. And methadone clinics here are so routine, I don't even notice them anymore.

I'm honored that you would choose my blog to out your secret identity. I'll keep it quiet, I promise (I can hear the Pirate fretting over this from across the continent...)