Road Trip – Cannon Beach

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CANNON BEACH
I am back in Bangkok and reunited with my dog, friends and family, and cheap, delicious Thai food.

To say that I’m ecstatic to be home would be an understatement – but I will also inevitably miss Portland and the Pacific North West.
Deviating from my original plans, I’ve actually decided to spend next semester (or the first three months) in Chiang Mai, the largest city in Northern Thailand instead of Portland. I’ll explain why I made this decision in a later blog post, but just know that I’m PSYCHED to live in Chiang Mai!

The photos here are from a quick trip out to Cannon Beach with Kat and Dad when the weather wasn’t as optimal as we had hoped. Nevertheless, it still made for a good trip and some misty, eerie photos 🙂

– JM

p.s. PDX magazine just released the article that I, as their intern, wrote for them! T’was my last assignment for them and is also my first published piece of writing 🙂
http://pdxmag.com/archives/3727

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Woops sorry Kat! It’s hard selfie-ing with a 35 mm lens…
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^^infamous haystack formation ^^

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sporting my new $3 soviet communist hat
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“The Wanderlusting Alpaca”
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Alpaca Fun Fact: Alpacas and llamas can cross-breed and create an offspring called the huarizo, which are valued for their longer fleece.

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Oregon Coast

With Thanksgiving approaching, it was bittersweet saying bye to my parents. This year will mark my first not spending a Thanksgiving celebration back home among familiar friends, family and food. If you’ve ever been to one of my family’s classic food-coma inducing thanksgiving dinners… you’d understand that this is not an event to miss. However, I’ll be spending it with my sister at her boyfriend’s home with his loving family, so I know that there’s still a lot to be grateful for.

But back to the parents!
Since they were here for a bit, that also meant that Kat and I didn’t have to drive all the time. Due to our limited driving experience, we tend to freak out behind the wheel and shout at Google Maps quite a bit… so a proper shout-out to parents for taking the wheel for a while.

Also! I finally had the chance to visit a couple of colleges of interest, including U of O, OSU and Udub (separate trip).We took a quick road trip down to Corvallis and Eugene and then drove highway 101 back up to Portland. For you who don’t know, highway 101 is the western-most road in the states and is a classic road trip drive that offers great shots of the Pacific Ocean. Last summer, Dad and I had covered a large portion of highway 101 in Cali with a rented convertible, which was an absolute blast. This year, we took turns driving and I must say… the whole drive, no matter what state you’re in, is gorgeous. If you ever have the chance – DRIVE IT. 

Have a wonderful thanksgiving! Don’t forget to heap on an extra serving of cranberry sauce and Pecan pie. Do remember to take a moment, glance around the table, take in the faces (and food) and be thankful – there are worse seats to sit in. 

– JM

p.s. if you find this TLDR – the bottom photos will do justice, I promise.

florence

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driving to seal rock

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Seal rock

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next day:

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the best part of this post

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wait it gets better

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a sad farewell to my friends and back to portland 

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mother’s first meal back home = photo opps.

Keep Portland Weird

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Appropriate and fitting, many would agree that this title and slogan perfectly summarizes Portland. While Portland may be described as progressive, green, and a city of many characters, one will quickly realize that its quirky, artsy and culturally diverse characteristics equally radiate throughout the streets.

Portland is a city known for its close proximity to nature, stunning views of Mount Hood (which realistically, can only be seen 20% of the time), and infamous rainy weather. However… it is also known for other quirky things such as the world’s largest annual Naked Bike Ride (13,000 participants may I add) and TV show Portlandia that’s based off the stereotypical “Portlandian” oddball.

I came to Portland with preexisting conceptions of what it would be like:

A.     Although Twilight wasn’t based off of Portland, the weather would basically be the same
B.     Bike rights are human rights
C.     Hippie culture rules all
D.    Everyone’s quite active and enjoys spending their time outside
E.     Unlike my life in Michigan, I wouldn’t have to eat a sandwich or burger for dinner basically every night
F.     Coffee shops dominate the streets like 7-11’s, beauty salons and massage parlors do in Thailand

Within the first couple of days, I realized that the majority of my preconceived notions were somewhat true… for example:

–       On my first couple of days here, I ran into several non-GMO campaigns on the streets where students dressed fittingly for the 1960’s sang songs about free range and natural produce (While I may poke fun, I actually do agree with their position)

–       I learned that you’ll be silently judged if you don’t know the differences between a macchiato and an espresso (although the baristas are too nice to be rude)

–       Bikers get their own bright green lanes

–       I never realized that so many vegetarian-isms existed (Ex: Macrobiotic, Flexitarian)

–       The number of obese and overweight people is noticeably lower than in the Midwest since the lifestyle here is so much more active and there’s a greater variety of food

However, the only thing that surprised me is the weather! Although there were welcoming rain showers when I arrived, it’s only been sunny and in the 80’s.

Also, since the caffeinated culture is one that I greatly embrace, I’ve decided to start a mini series to highlight the quirky and wonderful coffee shops & teahouses around Portland.

Hope you’re all having a wonderful fall!
– JM

P.S. Flights to NYC are booked! 🙂


Weekly food updates from mom


#1 – Medley Tea House
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Open for Business
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The Willamette River that runs through downtown PDX
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Outside of Starbucks
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Hawthorne Bridge
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Powell’s Books – the world’s largest independently owned bookstore
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Portland State University Farmer’s Market