Journalist. Mother. Bunny enthusiast. Pop culture junkie.

Journalist. Mother. Bunny enthusiast. Pop culture junkie.

Friday, August 28, 2009


First, I want to thank everyone for their comforting words regarding Lily's death. Your comments really meant a lot to me and helped me get through this hard time.

I am feeling better now (meaning I don't cry all the time anymore or have day-nightmares about the experience). I think my mother is getting better too. The bird lady we bought Lily from three years ago is raising more baby lovebirds right now and she told my mom she could have her pick of the litter after the birds are ready to be given away in a couple weeks. So, hopefully that will make things better for us.

I wanted to share my Portland trip with you guys. I did it journal style, because I always keep a travel journal when I venture out. So these are basically passages from it.

I hope you enjoy!


Our flight was supposed to leave at 3 p.m. but because of weather on the East coast, it got delayed until 8 p.m. Since we had already given our car to the rental company for storage, my parents and I were pretty much stuck in the airport for five hours with nothing to do.
To emphasize how crappy this is, I should tell you about our airport. We live in a city bigger than Portland, yet the airport is complete crap. It is divided into three separate buildings (with barely any transportation between). Two of the buildings are bustling with people and energy. One of the buildings isn't. Guess which building we were in.
To make time fly, my mom decided she was going to spend five hours the two small identical bookstores our building had. So she was going to basically look at the same magazines and luggage over and over again for five hours. Have fun.
I was even more irked to discover that my dad kept running into people he knew and he hung out with them, instead of hanging out with me.
So I sat alone for five hours and texted people who were to busy to text back and called people who didn't answer their phones.
It was pathetic.


My parents and I spent the morning at Portland State, where my dad got one of his Masters back in the 1960s. PSU has a really pretty campus and it was fun to walk around and see all my dad's old haunts (which now look completely different obviously). But the physics lab where he taught hadn't changed a bit, so he was comforted by that.

That afternoon we met up with my former coworker Michael, who quit his job at the newspaper one year ago to teach English in China. He is in Portland for the summer visiting his parents before going back to China this fall. It was great to see him again and catch up on old times.

Michael accompanied us to Multnomah Falls, a beautiful giant waterfall near Portland. And then we all went out for pizza.

That night my mom and I watched the Miss Universe pageant, while stuffing our faces with fudge.


My parents and I spent all day in downtown Portland, shopping and eating. I bought a really cute black dress at Forever 21 and a pretty beige cashmere sweater at a vintage store.
That afternoon, however, a fashion disaster occurred.
You see, I was in this vintage store when I spotted Juliette Lewis. I was a bit perturbed. I mean, what the hell is she doing in Portland? She noticed me staring at her, and to make up for it, I asked her if she worked there. She seemed a bit taken aback but assured me she didn't.
Ten minutes later, I was trying to try on a few dresses in the dressing room, which was about half the size of a bathtub. Outside, I could hear people coming up to Juliette and asking for her autograph. I freaked out because I was missing all the action and fell onto the floor, twisted in my dress. The result? I broke my new Kate Spade sandals, which I just bought a month ago. It was only the second time I had worn them. I'm not sure if they can be fixed. I was devastated.

I went back to the hotel that night and had three gin and tonics.


We spent the morning in Oregon City, looking at old houses and walking around town. It was unremarkable.

That afternoon, however, I helped my dad track down his old hippie buddies. The outlook was grim.
One of his friends committed suicide in '84. Another died from a drug overdose in '78. Another one left her husband and ran off to India in the early 70s. And his ex-girlfriend became a French professor at PSU and is now a lesbian. That left us with one remaining: his extreme hippie friend Hope, who he had met in yoga class. Hope had been a beautiful hippie girl with long wild blonde hair and radical ideals. For instance, when bar codes started being placed on grocery store items, Hope told my dad "scanners are going to take away jobs from Americans!" so she dragged my dad to literally every grocery store in town where they ripped bar codes off of every item. Crazy, right?

So when we headed over to her house for dinner, I was fully anticipating hippie chic.
Um, not so much.
Hope, it turns out, lives in a freaking MANSION. After college, when my dad had moved to Chicago, Hope met a wealthy older man who is now CEO of a Portland-based company.
She opened the door to her mansion wearing a cashmere sweater, nicely pressed slacks, and a single strand of pearls. I smelled Chanel.
We sat in her museum-like living room, while she laughed off her hippie lifestyle.
"I was so young and naive back then," she admitted, with a laugh. "Such a silly, silly girl."
My dad laughed with her and said similar things. He also became boring and normal after leaving school and becoming a physicist. He hasn't done yoga since the early 70s and he quit being a vegetarian back then too.
It was dismal. How can someone believe so strongly in ideas, only to have them evaporate without a care years later? How can someone lose their passion so swiftly? I had been prepared for a wise old hippie and all I got in return was a Stepford wife.
Hope then spent the next three hours over dinner telling us every detail about her gorgeous daughter Eloise (who is my age) and who is getting her PhD in biophysics and is also a professional ballerina in her spare time. Oh, and she's engaged.
I went back to the hotel and had four gin and tonics.


The ride home was uneventful, except my parents made me drink. Literally. My dad had five drink coupons to use up on this trip and after I refused, he made a scene.
"If you're not going to drink any alcohol on this flight, don't expect to come on trips with us again!" he roared. People looked over at our aisle with alarm.
I had three more gin and tonics.

I think I'm done with alcohol for a while.

And now I'm home and you know the rest.

Thanks for reading and I hope everyone has a great weekend!


Ela said...

LOL. Seriously, LOL. And throw in a couple of snorts. J, I am elated that there's WiFi in this airport but seriously, snorting in public is not my fave thing to do. You seriously crack me up.

You actually asked JL if she worked there??? Why not just ask for her autograph or tell her you loved her in ____? I die. I die.

Sorry about your shoe though. If it makes you feel any better, I was vintage shopping while here in OH and tried on a pair of shoes, which I told myself I would never do but they looked so cute I had to, felt my ankle twisting and *adjusted* myself to not fully fall. Yeah, I flat on my a--. Got a million looks (the store was packed) and a bunch of "are you OK???"s Needless to say, I didn't buy them.

Picturing your dad, throwing a dadtrum over his daughter not drinking is epic. He is hilarious. I think if you cut yourself right now (don't go emo on me) you'd bleed gin...

Happy weekend, love!

p.s. So glad things are looking up on the Lily front. Thank you for your sweet comments on my last post, so glad to help, even just a little.

Couture Carrie said...

The falls look lovely!
And gin is totally evil!

Welcome home, and have a fab weekend!


noura. said...

Ah! I've been to the falls!
They were really lovely, weren't they?
Also, yeah, the pictures are gorgeous.
I love looking at creative editorials.

Jenben said...

Oh, Jenny. It is such a joy to read your trip blogs :-)

Not the worst family trip ever though, right? I don't think anything can beat the photo with the hot-dog guy... Oh, and driving around Chicago looking for a parking space for 2 hours...

Sorry about your shoes and even more sorry about Lily, she was such a sweetie! Sending good thoughts and love your way.

Ok, and Juliette Lewis is a crazy chick. Was she wearing something totally wild? How sad that you didn't get her autograph!

XOXO darling, talk to you later! :-)

Amanda K said...

So Sorry about Lily.

Multnomah Falls looks beautiful!

Enjoy your weekend!

Savvy Gal said...

sorry about lily. on a happier note, it looked like you had fun in Portland. hope you have a wonderful weekend. : )

Vik said...

i just read your post about lily.. it made me cry.. tears streamed down my face.. im so sorry. Losing a pet is like losing a family member. We had to have our beloved dog put to sleep a month ago, she was 12 years old so quite old but she was sick..we all cried and mourned, we still miss her everyday..
on a cheerier note I have posted my first giveaway competition, check it out to enter.
much love from Ireland xx

Hannah @ LONDON--ROSE ♥ said...

lol this made me giggle :)
sounds like u had an amazing time!

thanks for the lovely comment you left on my blog <3

katie d said...

aw I'm so sorry about Lily :(

Your trip sounds amazing though... I can't wait to go to Portland someday haha.


Julie said...

Nice way to draw attention to yourself with the drinking coupons lol. That's weird about Hope but I think sometimes with hippies they just don't know what to believe so they go against everything, not reallly being that connected to it, but the same can be said for anyone else. And that really sucks about your shoes. I don't own a lot of shoes but when something happens to mine it's like the end of the world

Some Girl said...

Wow, from Hippie to Stepford wive... Those evaporating passions make me seriously afraid for my future.

Michael Kan said...

It was cool to see you again Jennifer. Brought a lot of good memories back again. Say hi for me to all the people we know at The Star.

Beki said...

Love your first shirt!

Kerrie della Rovere said...

How do you so effortlessly make the most mudane things so fabulous?

Leia said...

You are so pretty!!! Can't get over it.

Sophia said...

wow, your portland trip sounded great! i'm so sorry about lily, it sounds devastating to lose something like that. my parents never let me have pets as a kid so i've never gone through it, but i always feel terrible when someone's dies. i'm glad you're feeling better :)

Miss Mae said...

I am so sorry about your dear bird, Lilly. I like the pic of sitting on the subway! Thanks for your comments!

<3 Miss Mae

AudreyAllure said...

haha oh man, i hate flight delays. and it's true - the time you want to contact people to cure boredom, no one's available.

and those were such beautiful falls. overall your trip sounded pretty good :)

la petite fashionista said...

hahahha i loved reading your travel journal. my highlights": running into juliette lewis (?!), finding out that your dads hippie friend is no longer a rebellious hippie, the pretty waterfall, and of couse all the gin and tonics :)

UnoCosa said...

enjoyed this post - Multnomah Falls are beautiful! ...

dapper kid said...

So if I'm a hippie I'll either hit it lucky or die?! Haha, I have feeling that sums up a whole swathe of people from the '70s. And yikes that airport wait sounds crazy. Haha and I would have loved to have seen her face when you asked if she worked there! Hope you're having a stunning weekend dear :)

Gerri Ward said...

I luv the part about Juliette Lewis, that was sooo FUNNY! OMG! Jennifer YOU are solely FABULOUSLY PRETTY and HILARIOUS! p.s. I'm sooo HAPPY to hear that both YOU and your MOM are feeling better!!!!:)

daisychain said...

Portland looks gorgeous.

C.Elizabeth and Natalia said...

Awww... I am so sorry to hear about your lovely Lily! Sory I'm a bit late to write... but I'm thinking of you. It's never easy but all the best memories will stay.

How did you enoy your trip?

You look lovely girl, as always. Gorgeous photo of you and the falls... =)


yiqin; said...

Ah the waterfalls at the back is lovely :)

Monika P. said...

Such a cute places. And your pink blouse is really beautiful. Hope you had a great weekend:)

Serg Riva said...

those falls are the best. they were in gus van sant's first short film. great spot.

MJ said...

Sounds like you certainly had fun... glad to hear you're feeling better about Lily!

Imogen said...

I enjoyed reading about your trip. Those water falls look so pretty. Also, I'm very sorry to hear about Lily. I completely understand how you feel because of my cat who died this year. She was my true friend and I miss her so much. I know Lily was important to you. She is cute, what pretty colors,

Tink in My Closet said...

So sorry to hear about your beautiful Lily... Such an interesting post. I love hearing about all your travels.