Tuesday, January 5, 2010

When in Portland, Soak It Up

We're back in Portland, OR, to continue needed (and planned) repairs to our motor home.

And, of course, it's raining.

We've been in the Pacific Northwest since Dec. 22 and so has the rain. I suspect the rain lives here. We're just visiting. And, apparently, I announced our visitor status when I popped open my umbrella. Or so I've been told.

Here's what happened.

While our motor home was in the shop for repairs, we spring a leak, then a flat on our toad. A toad is a car that's TOWED behind a motor home.

Anyway, our toad (in real life our Kia Soul), has a flat tire, so we stop in at Goodyear for a fix. Goodyear, while very friendly, is not pet friendly, so we unload our dogs and walk them around and around the block, in the rain that never stops.

The rain doesn't pour here. It spits and spittles, drips and fizzes. Sometimes, it drizzles. A lot of times, it comes sideways. It lets up for a few minutes, then starts again.

During one of these drizzles, I pull out my TOURIST BULLHORN (um, the umbrella). Within minutes, the drizzle fizzles to a spit and a pop and I drop my umbrella.

 Well, shoot. The rain picks up and I open my umbrella again, then the rain spits into drips. Close umbrella.

Oops. Here's the rain again. Open. Oh. Rain ends. Close. Repeat ad infinitum. So frustrating.

I end up pumping my umbrella like a bellows before a dying fire.

That's when I notice no other umbrellas. I see lots of people -- walkers, shoppers and delivery people, but no umbrellas.

Later, at the dog park, I also see NO UMBRELLAS. Amazingly, to me anyway, lots of doggies and people prance and play around the dog park IN the rain with no worry ABOUT the rain as it continues to spit and spittle, drip and fizzle.

I give up and stash the tourist symbol in the back of the car. Later, when we pick up the motor home, I mention this interesting absence to the storekeeper. She's not surprised. Portland people use two things against the rain, she says: their fortitude and their hoodies.

Only tourists, she winks, use umbrellas.

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