Two Blissful Weeks in Bend
We are just finishing two wonderful weeks in Bend Oregon. What a perfect place to spend a summer fortnight. Friendly people, stunning landscapes, good food, and lots of beer. Having two weeks in one place is new for us so far. It felt quite odd, but also relaxing. No thoughts about our next "streamin' day", just plenty of time to relax and do some of the organization things we promised ourselves we would do when we stayed still for a little while.
In terms of the organization, we did pretty well on achieving what we wanted. We sorted out our clothes and changed out the crappy plastic totes we had for the first 10 weeks of our journey for ones that fit better and are much easier to manage. Our closet/clothes situation seems to finally getting under control. We re-organized the kitchen cabinets and best of all did a modification that we had dearly wished Airstream had offered us at the start. We removed the never-used microwave and built a shelf instead. This gives us some much needed kitchen storage. We finally got around to finish the sort of all our old photographs. They are now ready to be sent off to be digitized. We did some mods on the outdoor propane grill (it was double regulated which made it lack a little oomph) so that it now has a wee bit more of a feisty flame. Finally we had a good old sort out of the truck, we consolidated old luggage and bought a couple of nifty little bags that take up a lot less space and will still allow us to take plane trips when we need to. I had wanted to get some more cosmetic things done to the trailer (some new pillows, and pictures for the walls), but we didn't find anything we loved, so that will have to wait for another day. But we are definitely leaving Bend a lot more organized than when we arrived.
Of course all work and no play would make us very dull indeed. We definitely found time for play. We did some wonderful hikes in the amazing Smith Rock State Park and Shevlin Park and we took a drive to the Cascade Lakes up around Mt Bachelor and walked pretty trails and saw some fantastic scenery. We also walked all over Bend, visiting the pretty downtown and Farmers Market, the Art in the High Desert Art Fair, and the Old Mill District. One thing that is great about Bend is there are no high rises here, so you can see the mountains from anywhere in the city. They serve as a reminder of how lucky we all are to live (even if just temporarily) in such wonderful spots.
Is there anything else wonderful about Bend, hmmmm let me think. What's that I here you say, something about beer. Oh yes I almost forgot Bend is blessed with quite a few outstanding breweries. For research purposes, we visited quite a few spots on the Bend Ale Trail. While we didn't get to all, we did stop at 10 Barrels Brewing, Boneyard Brewing, Crux Fermentation Project, Good Life Brewing, Sunriver Brewing Company and of course Deschutes. We were there two weeks, remember so don't judge. All the beers were great. A quick word about Deschutes - as lovely as people are here, I did find a few people were a little sniffy about Deschutes. Success often does that, but we were first introduced to Mirror Pond Ale many years ago and where we used to live in San Diego, the drugstore across the street always had it on special. We have kicked off many weekends with a few bottles. So visiting where it all started was definitely on our list of to-dos. They make some great beer and that's one of the reasons they are now the 6th largest craft brewery in the US. More power to them.
Also while here we got to meet some great people. We are active on RVillage and through that we met up with a couple of other beer lovers staying in the same place as us, Rob't and Diana who hale from Austin Texas. They blog at Postcards from the Road. It was great to have some company and we hope to meet them somewhere else on our journey. We also made new friends via RVillage who live in Bend but also spend a lot of time RVing. We had so much in common with Dave and Shannon and have already arranged to meet up in January and February at Joshua Tree and a couple of Arizona Parks. We also were lucky to get the chance to go to a meet and greet organized by Chris and Cherie from Technomadia. We have been following their blog for a while and they are the total gurus on everything mobile internet, so it was fun to meet them in person.
We had a very full 2 weeks in Bend and for sure we will be back; this town is just too good to not revisit. We'll be hitching up over the Labor Day weekend and heading up to White Salmon, WA for the installation of our solar panels. Woot! Woot! We'll post all the details about that next time.