Yesterday, Justin and I ventured off mid-morning to the big city (yes, Portland is our version of the big city) in search of a tri bike and more birthday celebrations. Have I mentioned how much I love week-long Birthdays?
We arrived in Portland with enough time to stop at a couple bike shops before checking into our hotel. First we stopped at the Planet X showroom (which did not impress me) and then the Athlete’s Lounge, which was well stocked with a variety of bikes and accessories. Although I did not test ride or get into the “buying” mode on Friday, Justin and I were able to narrow the options down to a few that I would test and fit the following day. My top contenders were the Cervelo P3, Scott Plasma 10, BMC Time Machine, and Argon 18.
After we left, Justin drove us to the “surprise” hotel we were staying at, which he had repeatedly joked was a Motel 6 near the Portland Airport. Well, the surprise ended up being The Nines. Neither Justin nor I had ever stayed at The Nines and it was at the top of our list. Walking in we were immediately impressed by the service, amenities, and décor. The room was absolutely beautiful!
After getting settled in and enjoying some down time, Justin and I decided to take advantage of the blue sky and warm sunshine by enjoying a happy hour at the hotel bar called Departure. It’s a chic bar/lounge on the rooftop of the hotel with a great view of the city.
Once we soaked up the late afternoon sun, we headed to the Portland City Grill for another happy hour, followed by Urban Farmer (another great restaurant in our hotel). This was really a surprise to both of us because it is uniquely located in the middle of the hotel in a giant atrium.
To complete our progressive dinner, we ended the night at Veritable Quandary at the recommendation of many friends. Justin ordered razor clams with Dungeness crab, while I ordered the osso buco that was superb. I was extremely shocked when we sat down, only to find a personalized menu for my birthday.
The next morning after waking from a food coma, Justin and I headed toward the Willamette River for a morning run. It was a nice cool temperature with overcast skies and spots of sun. We did two loops around the Riverfront Loop and enjoyed some interesting sites along the way. I swear, every time I run with Justin I get a small history lesson and learn something new.
One of the many things that Portland is known for is being extremely weird and eclectic. At one point along our run, Justin pointed out a very odd floating contraption in the river (with person inside) and it looked as though the guy has created his own floating house equipped with palm tree, bike, cooler, lounge chair, and waterslide. Only in Portland.
Once we finished our run we made a quick pitstop at Starbucks, cleaned up at the hotel, checked out, and were off to the Athlete’s Lounge for some serious shopping.
Because I am a newbie on a tri bike, he encouraged me to come back in a month or two, after riding and getting used to the different feel, for a better, more exhaustive, fitting. I walked away incredibly excited about my new purchase and birthday present and am now ready to ride like the wind! THANK YOU HUBBY!