There’s more to Portland, Oregon

Than stores on steroids. 
Perhaps I should explain.  Portland is a lovely city, don’t get me wrong, but apparently there’s something in the water that grows stores which are the giant redwoods of their kind. 

First, for this quilter, there’s Fabric Depot.  Take a building the size of your average Target.  Or football field.  Fill it with fabric of all sorts (although about a third of it is all quilting cottons) and notions and tools and patterns, and it is a seamstress’s or quilter’s paradise.  Plus they have these periodic sales…  Anyway, I now have the yardage for the last four fabrics for my flame quilt.  Among other things [wry g].

Then there’s Powell’s.  People dream of visiting Powell’s, just once in their lifetimes even from half a world away.  Well, hardened bibliophiles do.    The flagship store occupies an entire city block, five stories high.  They hand you maps when you walk in the door, and color code the rooms, but I still always feel like I need a trail of bread crumbs to make it out safely again.  Hours later, usually, although I was good yesterday (for which I was amply rewarded, see below).  Powell’s sells new and used books, side by side on its many shelves, a laudable practice I’ve never seen anywhere else.  They also bought two bags of books from me yesterday.  I try not to go to Portland without at least one bag of books to sell there, which helps keep the credit card from getting too hot.

But, as I said at the beginning of this post, there’s more to Portland than stores on steroids.  After I pried myself away from Powell’s, I headed up to Washington Park, on a hilltop to the west of downtown.  Now, I knew Portland is known as the Rose City (so is Tyler, Texas, where my mother lives).  But I hadn’t really thought about it all that much.  Well, now I know why.  Washington Park is home to the most enormous, gorgeous rose garden I think I’ve ever seen (and I’ve seen a few).  Here.  See for yourself:

I don’t know how many acres the garden covered.  But apparently Portland does rose gardens on steroids, too.
And views.  The views from the rose garden down the hill towards downtown are something to behold:
Then there were the blossoms. 
This particular variety is even more dark purple than in the picture.  I’ve never seen such purple roses before.
And, of course, something that wasn’t a flower, but awfully cute.
Washington Park isn’t just a rose garden, though.  It’s an enormous park with a zoo and several museums (some of which I really need to make more time for someday), and an arboretum.  I took a short stroll through it, as well.
There are at least a dozen different kinds of firs in this picture.   Aren’t the textures wonderful?
This is a Douglas iris.  It was an iris.  I had to take a picture.
And that was my marvelous day in Portland, which isn’t just stores on steroids.  Much as I love Seattle, I think Portland may be my favorite city.  What’s yours?