August 9, 2016 – The return home

Originally our plan is to take a few days driving and get to St. George, UT to check things out at the house and then return home.  However, temperatures in St. George are hovering around 105F for a high and 80F for a low and it just seems too daunting. So instead we will spend a night in Portland as originally planned and then head home with an overnight in Redding, CA. One of our goals on this trip is to escape the heat and if we end up where it is much hotter than home that seems counter-productive.

We start out earlish because we have to cross the border back into the U.S.  Having had a lengthy delay getting into Canada we can only imagine how difficult the trip back in will be. Amazingly it takes about 5 minutes. Huh.

We want to stop in Portland because several years ago we were in Portland for Davis Cup and we ate at Jake’s where we had razor clams. They were fabulous! So after checking into our very nice hotel, the Sentinel, we make a reservation and walk the few blocks to the restaurant. (Thanks, internet, for the pictures below)

There is a saying about not being able to go home again. My experience is that it is very difficult to go back to a restaurant that you loved and have it be as good as you remember. This is true of our experience at Jake’s. We start out with a calmari appetizer which is fine but the razor clam entree is heavily breaded and the flavor is just not the same. I remember them have this maple syrupy element to them in their sweetness. This dinner was an over breaded piece of seafood with a lump of mashed potatoes and green beans. Sigh.

Fried calamari
Fried calamari
Sad razor clams with blob of potatoes and green beans
Sad razor clams with blob of potatoes and green beans

Oh well. The next day we hightail it to Redding, CA. We do get to see the magnificent Mount Shasta along the way.  It is the volcano that is the farthest south in the Cascade Range.  It is surprisingly enormous when it comes into view, kind of like seeing Mt. Rainier in Seattle.

Mount Shasta
Mount Shasta

Finally, we end our culinary journey at Olive Garden which normally we wouldn’t go to but, hey, it’s Redding and probably not a place to get adventurous.  Our eggplant parmesan was actually quite good.

Eggplant parmesan from Olive Garden
Eggplant parmesan from Olive Garden

So that’s it, our whole trip. We drove about 2400 miles, had beautifully cool weather, enjoyed ocean breezes, saw amazing vistas and fabulou flora, ate our own home-cooking and had some amazing restaurant meals, and loved being in each other’s company. Pretty wonderful, I’d say.

 

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