Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Mostly HarmlessMostly Harmless by Douglas Adams
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Last weekend I traveled with Andreas and Randall to Seattle to Keith and Glen's wedding. Andreas' research showed that flying into Portland, renting a car and driving to Seattle to be significantly less expensive than flying direct. That worked well except we should have left Portland earlier. As it was we got on the road to Seattle about 3pm on a Friday afternoon, hitting rush hour traffic in both cities and turning a 120 mile trip into a 4 hour drive. But we got to walk around beautiful downtown Portland.

The weather was perfect the whole trip; sunny and warm, not too hot or humid. The wedding was in Gig Harbor on a rocky beach steps from Puget Sound with a lush forested island in the background. Both the grooms were beaming. All of their friends and family that were there were super nice people and fun to share the event with.

Did you ever see, possibly in high school science class, the short film clip of the bridge twisting in the wind and finally collapsing? The bridge they called Gallopin' Gertie? That's the Tacoma Narrows Bridge. Rebuilt it was known as Sturdy Gertie. A few years ago a second bridge was built right next to it so each bridge carried traffic in only one direction. Sturdy Gertie was closed for repairs so all traffic was routed over the new bridge, but going by it on the way from the SEA-TAC Holiday Inn Express to Gig Harbor I felt like I was shaking the hand of a celebrity. Here's a youtube video of the 1940 collapse of Gallopin' Gertie:

The drive back to Portland was much faster. We got through security quickly and had half an hour to kill before they began boarding our plane. On my way to look for bottled water to take on the plane I discovered a rather nice book store named Powell's. Apparently they have a huge store in downtown Portland which I didn't see. And it's a good thing, too, because if I had I wouldn't have seen anything else of the city. And that's were I picked up this used edition of Douglas Adams' Mostly Harmless; in a surprisingly nice bookstore near the gate in Portland's Airport.

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