July 31, 2013

The Oregon Trail

Wikipedia describes the Oregon Trail as a 2,000-mile wagon route  that connected the Missouri River to valleys in Oregon. From around 1830 until 1869 over 400,000 people traveled all or part of this route.

Betty and I are taking a different path to Oregon in a week as part of our satisfying retirement: flying from Phoenix in under three hours, rather than the months-long trip for folks to get from Kansas to the Willamette Valley. And, our goal is a bit different: escape the Phoenix heat for 3 weeks, reconnect with old friends, and make new ones. The RV will stay parked on the side yard for this adventure, but our youngest daughter will be flying up to join us for the last week: she is serious about finding a place to live where your hands don't burn on the steering wheel.

Mike and Tamara Reddy, of Early Retirement Journey fame, are in the midst of a two month journey from their home in Southern California to The Pacific Northwest and back. As luck would have it, they will be at an RV park in Portland during one of the weeks Betty and I are in town. So, we finally get a chance to share more than just blog comments with this energetic and fascinating couple.

Of course, we are clearing major blocks of time to spend with Galen Pearl and the Retire in Style lady, Barbara Torris and husband, Earl. They are dear friends we met and fell in love with last year during our first trip to Oregon. Who knows, maybe Linda Myers and husband, Art, will make it down from the Seattle area, too.

A trip to the fabulous Oregon coast is a must. Betty is already itching to add fresh photos to her collection from last year.










  


Wine Country is just an hour or so south of our home base in Hillsboro and will be worth a day of sipping and relaxing.







But, mostly, we will be getting to know Portland even more intimately than last year's short, 6 day visit. There are enough picturesque neighborhoods, parks, waterfront walks, and great restaurants and coffee houses to keep us happy. Add in weather that is guaranteed to be 20-30 degrees cooler than Scottsdale and we may not be anxious to board the flight home at the end of the month.







A month after our return we head out on a several week trip in the RV to the coast and wine country of California, with a side trip to the Redwoods. The planning for that adventure has already started with reservations confirmed at the key RV campgrounds we want to try. Still, we need to get home in time to prepare to leave again.
  While we are in Portland I will be posting on a different schedule: one that is more sporadic. I will aim for two fresh posts a week but vacation time may get in the way.  Upon our return at the end of the month, things will return to a normal Monday, Wednesday, and Friday schedule.

The Oregon Trail: our road to a satisfying retirement adventure.

24 comments:

  1. Well Bob I am excited to "see" Oregon thru your and Betty's eyes! You two are traveling for my husband and I right now as we are not retired and may never get to travel there but by the magic of your writing and Betty's photo's we all can travel.

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    1. We will have plenty of pictures and stories to tell. We leave one week from today so I guess I better start packing soon.

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  2. This all sounds like such fun. :)

    Curious, about sipping wine? Most Christian
    faiths teach drinking is a sin. Personally, I
    drink too and, consider myself a Christian. As,
    we know Jesus himself enjoyed wine. :) Yet, my
    Church would not approve. I don't discuss it
    with other Church members.

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    1. I'm pretty sure the not drinking wine "rule" is a human addition. It does not appear in the Bible. Some Christian denominations may consider drinking wine a sin, but the Bible preaches against the abuse of alcohol, not the alcohol itself.

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    2. Bob, not to hijack your post, but I'll jump in here and say that Christians banning alcohol is a VERY new thing. After all, a Baptist minister created the formula for bourbon and the puritans drank regularly. Neither catholiscs nor episcopalians nor others oppose alcohol (says the nice Episcopalian girl). The bible opposes drunkenness, not drinking.

      Otherwise, I obviously appreciate your need to get out of Dodge (er, Phoenix). I shall return to Dallas in the fall and probably spend every spring in the south somewhere-but I have enjoyed Denver temperatures! Hopefully you will see everyone possible!

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    3. From what I can tell, the prohibition against any drinking was an outgrowth of the Puritan movement, meaning it didn't begin to have an impact until the 17th century.

      In any case, I am glad Betty mentioned it because it gave me a chance to do a little intellectual research...something I enjoy.

      Denver in the winter is an acquired taste, just like Portland in the winter. I am very happy to stay in Phoenix during the pretty parts of the year, just like you will be in Dallas.

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  3. Have a wonderful time! Looking forward to more of Betty's photos!
    b

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    1. You can rest assured there will be pictures!

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  4. I have suspected for awhile that you are not long for the Phoenix area. Now that your daughter wants to get away from the heat you may have even more reason to look for a new home. Am I wrong? Have a great trip. You are so lucky to be meeting with Galen Pearl. Love, love her writing.

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    1. Actually, with my other daughter, son-in-law and grandkids, plus my dad, and our friends firmly settled in the Phoenix area this will always be our home base.

      But, after 29 summers in Phoenix, it is past time to spend June-August in a cooler climate. The RV now gives us that opportunity. So, next summer will find us gone most of the time. Flagstaff, Oregon, and California are all possibilities...probably a combination of all three.

      Galen is a sweetheart in person, too. I hope she decides to begin blogging again, but if not I understand. She is putting a lot of her fresh material on her Facebook page if you need a Galen Pearl fix.

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  5. You couldn't hang out with any better people than Barbara Torris, Galen Pearl and Linda Myers. So have a good trip ... and I too will be looking for some great photos. Maybe some of them taken while you're sky diving?

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    1. They are all dear people. Barbara's husband, Earl, and Linda's husband, Art, are also fun and interesting folks. I am also looking forward to getting together with Tamara (Early Retirement Journey) and Mike Reddy. They were quite helpful in getting Betty and me to take the plunge into RV travel.

      Sky diving? I'll leave that to George Bush Senior.

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  6. Happy trails.
    I will enjoy seeing the pictures.

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  7. Oregon is such a lovely place. We lived in the Portland west (Newberg, Tigard, Beaverton) and south (Wilsonville) suburbs for over 30 years. Enjoy your vacation from the heat of Phoenix.

    I will be in Portland Sept. 21-Oct 1. We'll miss each other this trip.

    However, if you head toward San Antonio in the next year or two, look us up. We had to stop to make money to continue traveling after hardships in 2011 & 2012.

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    1. I just love the big city/small town feel that comes from all the great neighborhoods. We are renting a condo in Hillsboro which gives us good access to the coast, wine country, and the city.

      We were in Texas Hill country earlier this summer and loved it. San Antonio is certainly on our "again" list.

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  8. Have a great time... And good luck with the airline schedule!

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    1. Yeah, the flights to and from are always the biggest stress producers: will they be even close to on time, with the plane break, with my seatmates be unpleasant...all the joys of air travel.

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  9. Bob, Hope you and Betty have a Great time! We Love the Portland area and may end up there someday,at least part time. We own an ocean front condo on the Oregon Coast in a little town called Neskowin, about 10 miles north of Lincoln City. We only get to enjoy it about 3-4 times a year right now, but it's our little slice of Heaven!

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    1. We will be visiting Astoria during this trip, a place that looks fascinating but we have never visited in our various trips to the Oregon coast area because we've never gone that far north.

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  10. We're looking so forward to meeting you both. Although it seems so far away . . . we have three other stops still before we get to Portland!

    Looking forward to swapping RV stories when we meet, and discussing where we're each going next. Till then!

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    1. Us too. We'll plan on meeting you after your time at the Japanese Gardens. Keep those posts coming. You and Mike are making our next major RV trip so much easier with all your tips and links.

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    2. Send me your dates, Bob, and Art and I will come down if we're available.

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    3. Bob, I just recently found your blog site. I am loving it. I am about 15 months out from retirement and counting down. I have been working since the age of 14 and can't imagine what it will feel like to not to "have to go to work".

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    4. It is a tremendously liberating feeling....after you get over the fear and worry that is a natural part of leaving something you have down for 40 or 50 years.

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