Well, we had quite a busy weekend, as many of you most likely read on my lovely wife’s blog. Well I am here to expound on our adventures, but this time with photographic evidence of our Sunday excursions.
Saturday began with us taking a trip to the Body Worlds 3 exhibition at OMSI. What an amazing display of anatomy! Mind you, I am a complete science retard and barely get excited about anatomy (unless said anatomy happens to be clothed in a nice bulky turtle-neck sweater and maybe a pleated skirt, but I digress…).
This particular show was captivating. Never have I seen the human body displayed in such an amazing medium, if you can call it that; not sure how else to refer to plastination. This show is a MUST SEE for ANYONE. The exhibit brings cadaver dissection to a very approachable level where the paying public can appreciate the human anatomy outside of the high-paced (and high tuition) sterile classroom, and in a very comfortable and relaxed atmosphere of a museum. The process of plastination has provided the ability for a strikingly higher number of people to benefit from studying the same cadaver than a typical classroom dissection would. This has got to be one of the most ground breaking inventions/discoveries to happen to anatomy since the breakthroughs of human dissection were first encountered. I think it will take another few days or even weeks to fully process my understanding and feelings on this exhibition. Suffice to say, I was amazed.
After that we ran around OMSI just to see what else was offered. Played around at a few of the displays, and then headed down to grab a bite to eat before we toured the USS Blueback submarine docked at OMSI.
The sub tour was interesting. I have not been in a sub previously, and this chance was quite enlightening. I have a much deeper appreciation for ANY Naval personnel serving on a sub. Yes, the quarters are cramped, which would be fine for a while, but these service men and women are at see for 2-3 months at a time, which is not something I think I could do, let alone enjoy. My hat is off to them!
After the sub tour, we made our way back to the car to stop by a gun range so I could pick up some information regarding classes. Because Oregon is a “Shall Issue” state, I have the ability to take a class provided by the range to be certified for a Concealed Carry license, at which point all I need to do is submit my paperwork and I should be granted said license in the time it takes to process the background check.
Mind you this doesn’t mean I WILL be carrying, if ever, but I do want to get the license for the ability to do so legally. I also want to get Jean into the basic course with me so she can learn to shoot and be comfortable around firearms. Of course at the same time I am also in the market for a particular handgun; one I have wanted for quite a long time…
After I picked up the information I was looking for, we moseyed through downtown Portland to the International Rose Test Garden. To say it was a bit crowded was putting it mildly. We drove the full loop looking for parking about three times before deciding to call it a day. So home we went.
We sat at home (well, I napped for a bit) trying to decide where we wanted to go for dinner. I gave Jean a mission to find some good sushi, and damned if she didn’t deliver! We found ourselves at Umi Sushi in Lake Oswego a few minutes later. This is where I know llmarycatll will be jealous:
Josh, the General Manager and seemingly head sushi chef prepared some fabulous Geoduck sashimi for us. Amazingly crisp and with a very nice mild flavour. I’ll tell ya, I am HOOKED! I love this stuff!
The rest of the dinner was equally as good. Umi sushi gets our approval for a decent sushi shop. We’ll definitely be frequenting their little restaurant!
After that lovely dinner, we headed home for a good night’s sleep….
Sunday morning Jean and I decided to try our luck once again with the International Rose Test gardens. Luck, or should I say the weather, was on our side. Since it was a bit drizzly all morning, the crowds of Saturday were long gone, and only a small handful of the devoted ventured out to the gardens. The gardens are GORGEOUS in the rain!
The roses are unbelievably beautiful this time of year! I had to refrain from taking a picture of every varietal planted.
Of course, not to be outdone was the Japanese Gardens across the street:
I always love a nice Japanese garden. So serene. The place seems to demand introspection and calm, collected thinking…
Speaking of introspection, we decided to bookend the weekend (which started with viewing plastinated cadavers) with a trip tot the Mt. Calvary cemetery. Since it was on our way back home from the gardens, it seemed a natural detour for us.
Once our jaunt through the cemetery was complete, we decided that some wine tasting was in order and hit the GPS for some ideas… After a 20 minute drive, we found ourselves at Helvetia Winery in the northern agricultural portion of Hillsboro. We ended up taking home a case from them. Two bottles each of their 6 offerings: a 2003 Pinot Gris, a 2004 Chardonnay, and 2001 2002 2003 and 2004 Pinot Noirs. We finally found some Pinot Noir here that was worth drinking! Up until now the 4 wineries we had visited since moving here were less than quaffable. Well, Helvetia broke that spell and took some of my money in trade. I also must say that while proud of their wines (and for good reason), Helvetia still prices their wine in an affordably modest range, making it much more accessible to those not willing to drop upwards of $45 per bottle for a Pinot. In fact I believe their most expensive on the table was the 2004 Pinot at $28/bottle. Not too shabby…
After thanking John for walking us through his various wines, we decided to head back home… but not before stopping along the road for one last picture session to make llmarycatll jealous once more (can you see how we are trying to get her up here???):
Alpacas! It seems that everyone who has land around here raises Alpacas. Ok, maybe not everyone, but there are a ton within a 30 mile radius of us, some as close as 1 mile away…
And lastly, for browncolleen‘s sake, I will promise you we WILL find a good mexican restaurant; Sandoval’s Cantina is one of two Mexican joints within a 1/2 mile of our townhome, the other being Juan Colorado, which I think may be a bit better, though I will need to try both again to be sure. Neither place, however, is one I would recommend to friends. While good, they fall well short of what we have become accustomed to at Agave or Rose Canyon in Orange County… but fear not, we are looking and have it on good authority that great Mexican food DOES exist very close to our house; we just haven’t found it yet. But we will!