Lowdown on Down Under

Wednesday, December 05, 2012 Road Junkies 0 Comments

Westward Ho, Day 32:  Vancouver, WA, to Salem, OR 

Today we exited Washington and entered Oregon, which meant we would have an opportunity to visit our cousins Richard and Rebecca, who live in the Portland area.  Though he grew up in Florida, Rich heard the call of the Pacific Northwest after college graduation.  As a marine biology instructor, he found the area much to his liking.  Meeting the love of his life sealed the deal, and he set down roots here.

Rebecca and Richard
When they're not traveling, these two live in a waterfront Portland suburb called Lake Oswego, a town known for its top-notch schools, beautiful parks, and charming neighborhoods.  Rich and Rebecca's appealing cottage style bungalow across from the lake is just a short 15-minute walk from the village center, where many one-of-a-kind boutiques and unique restaurants invite exploration.

Lake Oswego
After a delicious lunch at Manzana Rotisserie Grill in the village, we were treated to a driving tour of Lake Oswego, including some of its many green spaces and lakefront neighborhoods.  After lunch, Richard, who has visited Australia 23 times as a tour guide for groups of educators, very generously allowed us to question him on places to see, areas to avoid and how to structure a desirable itinerary for our trip Down Under next spring, which actually will be autumn in Australia and New Zealand.

R & R's inviting cottage
Our time with these gracious hosts ended all too soon, but we had to continue our journey south, ending the day in Oregon's capital Salem.  Tomorrow, we plan to visit the Oregon Capitol building before moving on down I-5 toward California.