This past weekend, we arranged to go up and meet most everyone. I flew in midday on Saturday, June 24, and my cousin, whom I had never met before but emailed with a lot, offered to pick me up from the airport and drive me to the house. And, I met my grandmother for the first time in my life... along with some aunts and cousins and granduncles and grandaunts!
It was a pretty overwhelming day, and pretty hard to wrap my head around it all (even now), although seeing all the family resemblances was also uncanny. My Aunt Kathy looks exactly like my older sister and I was tripping out hardcore. I also got to see pictures of my grandmother when she was young...
...and her family too. Her biological father died when she was young and so was raised by her stepfather, but the woman is my biological great-grandmother, and they hailed from Baker City in eastern Oregon.
When the events of the day got to be too much, us Californians went across the river to Vancouver, Washington for dinner. It was freaking hot! Literally triple degrees, while I heard back home in So Cal it was a luverly high 70s... and this was triple degrees at 5:30pm!! Apparently weather that far north doesn't peak until then, AND the sun doesn't set until like 9pm!
I checked into my Airbnb that night, which was a charming little studio in the Northeast quadrant of Portland.
I ended up passing out pretty quickly from the travel and the heat and exhaustion of this day, which meant that I was up early and ready to go the next day, where I met up with two cousins from my moms side. We had a great brunch along the river, got to see Adam's awesome new hardware space-turned-loft living space in the Pearl District, Saturday market, and then went out to Multnomah Falls and hiked to the top! Then IKEA and dinner at a German restaurant in the historic Mississippi district followed by ice cream!
|VooDoo Donuts! Was too full from |
brunch to get any though...
|The view straight down the waterfall from the top!|
|Chipmunk on the trail!|
|What is the difference between these two beers??|
This was also an exhausting day lololol. I got home really late and was in a lot of pain. I wasn't planning on hiking the whole mountain and was in sandals and had blisters on the bottom of my feet, and my calf muscles were sore like crazy (and still are!) from the steep climb.
Monday morning I got up early to go get coffee (and a lavendar donut!) to get change for bus fare, took the bus to the train to the airport (yes kids, you can still get places without Uber) only to have my flight out delayed. I had a layover in San Francisco and then made it back home to my place, where I unpacked, and then collapsed on the couch for a nap and didn't wake up again til late when AJ was making dinner and the pets were being kute on the couch.
Such an eventful weekend that I still have problems being able to accept fully! But what an unexpected amazing treat to meet my blood family, something I never expected to be able to do, ever. Thank you Aunt Frances for making it possible!