Notes on Oregon travel and golf from a PDX airport coffee shop
Golf blogger B Tuck here, back again with another popular installment of airport thoughts, where before I officially vacate the time zone, I shed a few notable observations over a cup of Joe.
- If you have an Oregon golf or business trip on the horizon - and especially if you’ll be in fashionable Portland - don’t buy any clothes until you get here. Not only is there no sales tax on anything (including food, it feels like I’m back in Europe again where the price you see on the tag and the menu is what’s on the bill), there’s some pretty funky and unique gear you can find. My favorite store was 27 in NW Portland. It’s a tiny little shop located on the ground floor of a converted house and you’ll probably walk past twice before you find it. Here you can build your own shirts by choosing from thousands of designs, some even made by the store owners themselves, add text if you want, and select your color and style of tee for the perfect shirt.
For more high-class clientèle like WG writer Chris Baldwin, who sports fresh digs to see and be seen by the stars in Cabo, Scottsdale and the like, there is the Pearl District. This is where art galleries abound and chic designer clothing stores are selling $80 T-shirts (you’ve never seen me U-Turn faster than once I saw a price tag on a T-Shirt at Icebreaker yesterday, it was like I’d accidentally stumbled into a women’s restroom).
- If Columbia’s GDP reports quarterly growth over last quarter, it will be a direct result of my coffee consumption over the last two weeks. My last latte in Portland is courtesy of Coffee People here in Terminal D. “Coffee People” would make a great cartoon, wouldn’t it?
- It seems like everyone I’ve spoken too since I left Bandon Dunes last week is disappointed I didn’t encounter any vicious wind over my six rounds. “The course really shines in wind!” They say, as I told them I got around Bandon Dunes relatively easy in the low 80s and never more than a one club wind. I’m sorry, but I don’t feel shortchanged. There is nothing fun to me about hitting a 130-yard 4-iron like they say they’ve hit out there. Besides, I hit those in Hawaii last month, so we’re even.
- So far, Portland’s airport (PDX) is awesome. Free Wi-Fi, clean as a whistle, the TSA folk actually smile at you (one even complimented me on my new 27 shirt as I passed through)…and there are outlets next to tables so you can actually plug in your laptop. When most cities build their airport, are they consciously installing as few outlets available to the public as possible - on the ground of the dirtiest, out-of-the-way corners?
- I don’t know if I’ve ever been complimented on my tan…until Portland. “Whoa dude, that’s a mean tan you got going there,” the guy serving me pizza said as he saw my brown forearms courtesy of my Myrtle Beach home, where it’s been in the 70s for weeks now. “And I can tell it’s not fake, either. You must not be from around here.”
While I will say that I didn’t use my umbrella for one hole over two weeks of golf in Oregon, I will say there are some pretty pasty white legs running around these Portland streets…I’m told the sun doesn’t really come out in full force until June, where it stays through September. I’ve also been assured the winter rains aren’t so much a downpour as a slow drizzle. Perfect for reading a book, “you feel like that’s what you should be doing,” someone told me. It’s no wonder one of the city’s top landmarks is the massive Powell’s Bookstore on 10th and Burnside downtown.
- Our own Tim McDonald just posted a pretty hilarious airlines rant, but allow me to piggyback off it.
I’d prefer if airlines didn’t announce the reason for a flight’s delay/cancellation. I came to this conclusion on my way over here. We were seated on the plane and pulling out of our gate, when suddenly we took an immediate U-Turn back to the gate and the pilot announced “someone on the runway spotted a leak coming from our landing gear". The flight was canceled and we were all displaced.
Now how does an announcement like that help to remedy a situation? All it does is make everyone on the plane upset and/or very nervous we nearly took off with leaky landing gear. I was especially discomforted because I am in fact, a Boeing stockholder.
I would rather hear some far-fetched, made up reason. “Ladies and gentlemen, upon closing the luggage compartment, we have discovered a decaying troll from the forest of Fanghorn, and we’re sending in a autopsy team immediately. Please see a gate agent for a new connection.”
Looks like my latte is done and they’re calling me at the gate. Plenty more on Oregon golf at WorldGolf.com in the coming weeks.
Next installment of “Airport Thoughts” will be May 22nd from Manchester, England!
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I think I would actually appreciate that level of
dishonesty from an airline company. :) I remember hearing Jeff Foxworthy or Bill Engval talking about an airplane having to make an emergency landing because a bird ran into the airplane and the door fell off. He was like I cant imagine the type of bird that could knock the door off an airplane, I thought they were extinct! :) I agree with the comment about airports and the lack of accessible power outlets, they pick the most obscure places to hide those things!