How it all began...

The idea had been circling in my head for years. But the time was right and I could no longer fight the wanderlust that had built up. I bought a 1977 GMC NuWa motor home, threw a solar panel on top and started getting it ready for the open road. My main goal: to wander around North America, catching up with old friends, visiting new places and experiencing things I haven't before. This is my story...

Saturday, April 7, 2012

The Cirque (and I) go to Portland!

Portland, Oregon - Something unusual is in the air today...the sun.  Though I have been soaked to the bone with the wet Northwest climate, the sun is out today, creating a wonderful vibe in the city of Portland.  I have traveled up here to work with the Cirque du Soleil for the next 6 weeks, while also giving me an opportunity to explore yet another area of the country.  The first thing I found out is that living in a motor home in the rainy Northwest is much more challenging than I had imagined.  I am finding out that my rig is nowhere near waterproof...not even water-resistant, really.  All those times that I procrastinated on resealing the roof has come back and enacted its revenge upon me.  The dampness contained within it's confines is palpable.  So the logical steps for me is to get outside my four walls!  I am finding that cabin fever can run rampant if you let the weather outside dictate your daily plans.

Thus, I have been making a concerted effort to go outside my walls and explore.  One of the main reasons for making this voyage to the Northwest was to visit with friends up in this area of the country, check out the local attractions and immerse myself in its culture.  Since I will be heading back to the mountains of California for my summer job in the National Forest, I figured it would be a good time to get my dose of live music, tasty foods and other activities that are nonexistent while in the remote areas that I haunt in the summer months.  If anyone out there has any good recommendations for exploring the area, please leave a comment for me!


  1. It's getting way too hot and dry for me here in the Gila Valley of Arizona and I am excited to be heading for Portland in a few days! :-) I'm looking forward to hear what to explore, too.

  2. Hi Brian,
    My wife Hilda and I met you with Bob, briefly, last summer at Dinkey Creek. We now live in Tualatin. I know some places to go and things to see around Mt. Hood. Zig Zag Inn (South side of Hwy 26, Zig Zag). Drive up the Clackamas river past Estacada. Don't miss Silver Falls state park in Silverton (1 1/2 hrs. South of Portland,)Drive Hwy 22 from Salem to Sisters (Santiam river). E-mail for more.
    P.S. It has been unusually cloudy and wet this Spring!

  3. Also, I see in your pic that you found Rocky Butte. Another couple of places with great views in the city are the grounds of the Pittock Mansion (parking and outside is free). You can also take off into Forest Park from there. Don't miss the Portland Rose Garden. Also free with great view of downtown.

  4. Brian, if you get a chance go west to Astoria and spend some time exploring the coast area. Just coming into Astoria on Hwy 30 turn toward the river on 36th street. There are almost always a bunch of very noisy sea lions laying on the dock. In Astoria check out the maritime museum and if the weather is not too foggy the view from the astoria column is captivating. When you head south again the drive down the length of the Oregon coast is wonderful!! Cannon Beach is a fun town to check out.
    I grew up in Astoria and raised my kids there. The rain is why I am in Arizona. GRIN Have fun. There is a lot to see and do in the pacific northwest. Hugs to you and Stella. Cheri and Tony.

  5. I'm sorry I just realised when you posted that. You have probably already left that area.

  6. Nice blog and fotos, greeting from Belgium