Concerning A Visit To The Pacific Northwest


Like Lewis and Clark, only with internet access, my Loyal Follower and I investigate places we want to explore when we have the opportunity to travel for pleasure. It’s important to us to jam as much fun as we can into a long weekend make the most of our time. Travel sites are great for getting a general idea of what to see and where to stay, but if you want to know what the locals know, it’s best to go to the source. A few years ago blogger Allan Smorra helped us discover the wondrous world beyond the Golden Gate Bridge and we had the good fortune to meet Allan in San Francisco.

We recently ventured west again for a getaway, this time to Oregon, and once again a blogger provided the inside scoop that made our trip extra special. It was a pleasure to meet Mark Petruska and his charming wife, Tara. They treated us to a taste of Portland I will not soon forget. Funky, and more than a little freaky, Rimsky-Korsakoffee House was the perfect ending to our Pacific Northwest adventure. Thanks, Mark & Tara!


I emailed Mr. Petruska with a vague request and he replied promptly with generosity above and beyond the call of a virtual friend, proving bloggers truly are the salt of the earth. Speaking of salt, Jacobsen Salt was on our list of stops. It was not meant to be.

TRAVEL HINT: Do Not Rent A Vehicle From Budget. (Possible future rant including pics.)


San Francisco is where clouds are born, but the Oregon Coast is where they are conceived. That’s right; Highway 101 between Astoria and Tillamook is where the action is. There were many, many photo ops along this route. I could have spent weeks capturing the scenery. This, too, was not meant to be. I only had four days. Of 200+ shots, only fifteen made this post. There are more to come. We packed a lot into our short stay.


My impression of the Oregon Coast: go for the view, stay for the food.

Dynamic duo Bob Neroni and Lenore Emery, owners of EVOO Cannon Beach Cooking School, lovingly prepared pumpkin squash risotto hugged by sesame seared chanterelle mushrooms and kissed with a fresh Pecorino and beet tangerine slaw. This divinely inspired first course was paired with Neroni’s Chef’s Blend Oregon White. Ordinarily white wine is not my go to, but the crisp citrus notes and fresh peach finish was the perfect contrast to the velvety rich risotto.


Next we enjoyed pan-seared rockfish topped with puttanesca & aioli sauce served with hand cut buttered linguini and lemon zested arugula salad. It was paired with Pete’s Mountain 2014 Haley’s Block Pinot Noir. 


Just when I thought I could not eat another bite, a cast iron grilled NY striploin with pomegranate wine reduction was served with potatoes, carrots & Brussel sprouts. This taste of heaven was accompanied by J.Scott Cellars 2014 Petite Verdot.


No gastronomic excess is complete without dessert, and right on schedule a warm gingerbread spice-chocolate soufflé dressed in white chocolate sauce cozied up next to orange sorbet and salted candied orange peel & nut brittle for the big finish. This sweet shot is a bit out of focus as I was feeling quite dizzy by this point in the meal.


While in Cannon Beach we also ate at Sweet Basil’s Café twice. It was that good. Insomnia Coffee and Sea Level Bakery and Coffee gave us scrumptious sustenance between feedings.






Note: No calories were counted during this trip.



There Goes The Neighborhood

Copyright Amy Reese


Paul paused in the doorway. Buzzing fluorescent lights harmonized with the hum in his head, too many years around lawn mowers and leaf blowers. His chest tightened as he realized his life was being reduced to a 12 x 12 unit. For the better part of sixty years odd jobs made ends meet, but with the new human labor ban his only option was to accept the Relocation Package and “get while the gettin’s good,” so he was told.

“What’s a man to do? Drones Only is law. Keep to yourself and there’ll be no trouble.”

So he was told.


You can check out more Friday Fictioneers here. Thanks to Amy and Rochelle for this week’s prompt.



The Man That Time Forgot

This week’s Friday Fictioneers prompt, courtesy of Roger Bultot, reminded me of a wonderful old song called “Walk Him Up The Stairs” from the Broadway musical, Purlie. “Walk Him Up The Stairs” was a favorite of the band director at a high school I once attended.

(Go Yellow Jackets)

My short happy life as a member of the woodwind section gave me the chance to play, and fall in love with, many timeless classics. This particular song, though, struck a chord that resonates with me even today. If you check out the performance preserved for posterity here on YouTube, you may understand why.

It’s been a long time since the days of band camp. It has been a long time, too, since I participated in Friday Fictioneers. Thanks to Rochelle for leaving a light on for me.

Copyright Roger Bultot

The Man That Time Forgot

“Grandma, have you ever known anyone so in love with the sound of their own voice as that Mr. Donaldson?  I mean, seriously, I thought he’d never stop talking and let you get in the car!”

“He’s lonely, Dear. He doesn’t have any friends. Never has, come to think of it.”

“No wonder. All he ever does is brag about what he owns, where he’s been, how important he used to be when he owned that real estate business.”

“He’s like that American man who made everybody so miserable.”

“What man, Grandma? What was his name?”

“Oh, Dear, who remembers?”



Footnote: There’s something interesting about footnotes, they become meaningless when no one pays attention to them.