friends and family road trip reunion: day twelve: ashland to portland

On our last day in Oregon, we met my mother and sister-in-law for breakfast in Ashland, finally getting to Brothers, a favourite of mine from our 2016 trip to the area. After breakfast, we brought my mother with us to the dog park, which I knew she would enjoy. Allan is having a lot of hand pain (he has a compressed ulnar nerve) and he met our nephew D in town for some treatment. 

At my mom's apartment, we all said goodbye, which was painful for me. I realize I have to come down here every year, probably flying by myself, the way I did when my mom was still in New Jersey and I was in the GTA. She's 90 years old, and I want to see her at least once a year. This makes me feel better. But still. Goodbyes are hard.

For various reasons, I hadn't done more than an hour of driving on this whole trip, so I was happy to give Allan's hand a break and drive to Portland. On one stretch of I-5, the sky was very hazy and there was a strong smell of smoke. Whenever we stopped, the heat hit with a wallop, well over 37 C (100 F).

We're staying at The Benson, a historic hotel, which I found only because I love the Coast hotels on Vancouver Island and will always choose a Coast when it's an option. The Benson has been open in the same beautiful building since 1913.

On the way to the hotel, we passed Powell's, then found our hotel only a few blocks away. This is our first time in Portland. We're here one full day. Our plan: Powell's, murals, food carts

Cookie and Kai will spend the day at Sniff Dog Hotel. Rather than do an evaluation and have them in regular daycare, we've booked a private room, where they can have their own beds and toys, and cuddle with each other, plus "potty breaks" with staff. Travel and all the new places have been stressful for Kai. Right now she needs comfort more than play. Cookie's eye looks much better.

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