So, Downtown Portland wasn't exactly the best tourist place ever. Once I made the wrong turn onto the bridge and headed to the ouskirts of Portland, though, everything changed. For one thing, everyone's hair color changed. The people downtown were mostly Goths with jet-black hair; the people outside of town all had auburn hair.
I'm not joking. I saw at least ten different people, with the same reddish-brown hair color. Maybe Portland segregates its citizens by hair color?
East Portland was pretty fantastic, with a couple of interesting places that caught my tourist eye and demanded that I stop to visit them. I'm thinking of the rocking antique store, the life-size George Washington statue and the restaurant named after an obscure literary reference.
My first planned stop was the National Shrine of Our Sorrowful Mother, also called "The Grotto". It's a Catholic pilgrimage site, run by the Servites. The two highlights would be a copy of Michelangelo's Pieta, and an extremely lifelike statue of the Virgin Mary and Christ. Someday, if I have enough free time, I'll try to duplicate one of the nice pictures I saw here.
My next planned stop was Grant Park, which was dedicated to author Beverly Cleary a while back. I turned my car into one of the roads, and started driving through the park. It took me a while to realize that I was driving on one of the sidewalks, which is completely illegal.
The park exhibit is closed for the winter, it seems, but the statues were still there, along with some faded plaques. Here's Ramona Quimby, for your enjoyment.
After that, I drove from Portland to the Seattle area. The traffic is really bad by the state line and the Tacoma Dome. By "really bad", I mean it's "Oh, now I'm arriving forty minutes late" bad. I hope I don't run into any more traffic, during my trip.
[Spoiler alert: I do run into more traffic!]