rowanf: (peace sign)

Originally uploaded by rowanf.
Sunday we had breakfast with my friend Denise at SweetWaters at the River Valley Inn, where she was staying for Faerieworlds. Again we were right on the river, eating lovely food and enjoying good conversation and the ambiance of the river. It was really nice to see Denise, I have missed her in the years since she moved to the Portland area. I have planned a visit a time or two but never quite made it. Now with Carole in Portland too, maybe the center of gravity will have shifted enough to roust me out and up there for a visit.

We got to Faerieworlds around 2pm and I admit that I was very cranky about the staff. They are probably mostly volunteers and I should cut them tons of slack, but honestly... they don't handle disability (or as they put it "alter-ability") worth beans. Sweet young things keep trying to explain to me that "it isn't far, all you have to do is walk for X minutes". I really wanted to spit. Or say, "I'm happy for you that you are young and healthy, but my reality is that it is quite far." Grr.

The music was wonderful. The utter lack of shade was annoying. I really hardly got any pictures because of having to have a cane in one hand and a parasol in the other. Plus purse. No hand for taking snapshots. I did try a few from my seat but it really makes me crazy because the costumes were so wonderful. Luckily my friend Pat Kight has been going to Faerieworlds for years and taking pictures. Her first batch for 2012 (looks like Friday's snaps) is up and her previous years are worth viewing too.

We went to DJ's circle singing workshop which was a lot of fun but OMG not sure this is the venue for it. There was soooo much outside noise - from the stages, from a drum corps going by, etc - that it was hard to formulate and stay on the tune fragments. But there were about a dozen or 15 people there and we did have fun. There was an airbrush tattoo place across from the workshop dome and I got a little heart & rose tatt. They use stencils and didn't have any leaves or I would have gotten leaves going up my arms.

Tricky Pixie, Baka Beyond and the other bands we heard were great. And then came the long pause (on main stage, SJ Tucker was over on the smaller stage) whilst things were set up for Donovan. As darkness fell all kinds of lighted hula hoops and jellyfish and various other cool things made their appearance. The tribes were dancing and our numbers swelled with people who had come just for Donovan arrived.

Donovan came on at about 9:45 and did a set made up entirely of his early music. I was worrying about the leaving, but Kurt encouraged me to just be present and I'm glad he did. We slow danced to Season of the Witch and then started to wander off. We had earlier been asked to "turn to your neighbor and tell them your favorite Donovan song" and I had said "Atlantis" but didn't really imagine he'd do it. Donovan did Atlantis as his encore! And we got to our car and out with way less trouble than I had feared. We got to the hotel around midnight and fell over.
rowanf: (lovers - Robin Wood)

Originally uploaded by rowanf.
The one thing I wanted to capture from the Saturday when we played hooky was the food. We walked from our hotel over to McMenamin's North Bank, which is a lovely pub beside the Willamette River. We sat outside in the cool of the trees and had lovely food and the best hard apple cider I have ever tasted. It bore McMenamin's house brand Edgefield and was made with something like 8 different apples. Their website doesn't mention it though so I can't tell you more than that. But try it if you are in Oregon and can hit one of their brew pubs!

For dinner we ate seafood at McGrath's, another Oregon chain. I had a horseradish dijon encrusted halibut which was spectacular. Kurt had clam strips and we split an order of crab-stuffed mushrooms. Paired with a Willamette Valley Winery pino gris. Yum!

Other than that we mostly ran Alterac Valley in World of Warcraft (at a nearby Starbucks because the Red Lion wifi was so bad) and recovered from sitting on the ground too much on Friday.
rowanf: (rowan silk wings)

Originally uploaded by rowanf.
Friday we met up with Rene, Selene & Pat for breakfast and then headed out to Faerieworlds where we shared a shade structure their friend BarbaraFox had secured for us. The Faerieworlds organizers really need to take a page from the Renn Faire playbook and get hay bales and shade cloth up. There are no trees and no shade and no place to sit other than on the ground (or whatever you brought, in our case backjacks). Definitely stressful on the bod.

But we ran into George & Lael (and a couple of their students) and Barbie from the northern NROOGD contingent. Barbie was in fab red and black bellydance garb and looked wonderful. She led the spiral dance that started the festival and quite a job that was too (well done!). The opening ceremony featuring Woodland and S.J. Tucker and we were just entranced by S.J. Tucker's music, esp. a chant for La Sirene. (It is the "b side" of the digital single "Rootless", give it a listen!)

But by about 7pm we were very out of spoons and headed back to Eugene. We didn't even get dinner, just had handfuls of almonds (and a bit of leftover spinach) and went to bed. So Saturday we decided we would give the festival a miss and recruit our energies for Sunday when Sharon Knight, Baka Beyond and Donovan were on stage and DJ Hamouris was doing her second Circle Singing workshop.

And I had about twice a long a post about what we did on Saturday but my computer ate it and I really need to get going. Bah. This will have to do for now.
rowanf: (rowan silk wings)

Originally uploaded by rowanf.
The road trip has begun... and truthfully come it its midpoint. Yesterday morning Kurt and I left my house at 9am and headed up the 680 to the 505 to the 5 and hit William, CA about 11:30. We had lunch at Granzella's Restaurant & Delicatessen, wandered through the deli area marvelling at the amusingly named sauces (Kurt posted a picture of Ass Blaster hot sauce to his facebook... it comes in a little wooden outhouse) and I was impressed that there were two competing brands of escargot. Naturally we found the nearby cache and hit up the giftshop before hitting the road again.

We took a break in Redding and went to see the Sundial Bridge which is in the Turtle Bay park and convention center area. There are lots of caches in the park but we didn't have time to find any of the physical ones... but there is an earth cache there and Kurt hasn't done any of those so hopefully he will be able to add a new icon to his geocaching history.

Our first day destination was Lithia Springs Resort where we had a large bungalow room with a double tub which filled with spring water. (Too sulphurous for Russell but we enjoyed it!) We were surrounded by gardens and had a patio with deck chairs but it was too warm in the evening to enjoy them and in the morning we were eager to get on the road.

I have to admit that the drive from Redding on to Eugene was pretty stressful. Mountain freeway with lots of giant trucks, road construction and lots of curves. Kurt did the driving and we arrived in Eugene with both of us very low on spoons... and that is with an overnight in Ashland! I cannot imagine driving straight through and being up for anything for days. I'm a bit worried about the trip back.

Just outside of Eugene we stopped at the Cascades Raptor Center, a refuge and hospital for hawks, owls, eagles, corvids, kites, falcons, osprey and other hunting birds. They work with up to 200 orphaned sick, and injured raptors each year, plus they house over 60 non-releasable birds of 30 native species. The resident birds are in aviaries on a wooded hillside and one can walk to each and read the history of the individual birds and information about the species. It was a bit strenuous for me but I really loved it.

Then on to the Red Lion where we have a perfectly reasonable hotel room. After a couple hours of rest we headed out to Poppi's Anatolia, a Greek and Indian restaurant that my friend Pat had recommended. I had a glass of pino gris and shared a Saganaki with Kurt. He had the gyros platter and I had Brizoles (marinated pork chop) with a side of Sag Bhaji. It was just fabulous. It wasn't at all like the regular creamed spinach sort of Sag that one usually gets and it (and the chop) as so very flavorful. I wish this restaurant was closer to home! Wow.

We came back to the Red Lion where we hung out in the hotel hot tub to soak my aching body. It was nice and warm and we had several interesting conversation with fellow soakers. Tomorrow, brunch with Selene and Rene and then on to Faerieworlds!

May 2015



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