Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Paddling and Running and Drinking, OH MY!

Life is way too short not to have fun... Here are 2 cases in point:

Back on March 7th, I met my buddy Lanson Oukrop from Richland, Washington up in Hood River to paddle the White Salmon River. It was running at about 2.5 feet, which is a great flow. Lanson hadn't been in his boat for about a month, after having surgery on his nose. Plus, we hadn't had a chance to paddle together since September, on the White Salmon conincidentally. So, we were both looking forward to the outing.

It was a great time and we joing some other friends from the Hood River area. The weather was great, as was the paddling. Lanson and I finished off the day at the 6th Street Pub in Hood River for some well deserved sustaninance, before heading back home. Here are a few pics... more can be found at http://s226.photobucket.com/albums/dd142/spartankayaker/MWS%20March%207%202009/.

The following weekend, Lanson and his wife Mandi came down to Portland to join Shell and I in the 2009 Portland Urban Iditarod (http://www.keepportlandweird.org/urbaniditarod/). Shell and I have done this together for the last 2 years, but this was Lanson and Mandi's first year. Just to give you an idea of this event, you assemble 4+ people, dress in costume, procure a shopping cart from a local establishment, strap yourself to the cart and run through the streets of Portland (stopping at 5 bars along the way) barking like dogs... with regard to this last point, the start coincides with the start of the Alaskan Iditarod, so it makes sense. However, I'm pretty sure they don't bar hop. Shell and Mandi took up the mantle to create our team costumes (Pajama SuperHeros), which was tame compared to some teams, but garned us all some SWEET lounging wear.

Friday night, the girls headed out to get their nails done and hang out in our hot tub, while Lanson and I took off for the required team captain (yours truly) meetings and to catch a kayaking video premiere in Pdx. Mainly, Lanson and I were headed out to have a few beers, which we accomplished nicely.

Saturday dawned and it was windy and rainy, but, hey, IT'S PORTLAND, WE'RE SUPPOSED TO HAVE SOME RAIN. Here is our official team photo, but you really need to look at all the pics here to get a flavor (http://s226.photobucket.com/albums/dd142/spartankayaker/2009%20Pdx%20Urban%20Iditarod/) and, YES, the further into the photo album you get, the longer we have been running and bar hopping. We all had a BLAST and are already planning our costumes for next year (stay tuned).

Sunday we hit the Gateway Breakfast House, which is right by where Shell and I live, for breakfast. If you are ever in Portland, you really should eat here... it has, in my humble opinion, some of the best food in the Rose City. Afterwards, we all headed down to Portland's Saturday Market to wander a bit before our friends headed back home.

Until next time, get out there and enjoy the friends you are blessed with. Life is too short not to spend quality time with them and let them know they have a meaningful impact on your life.

See you on the river (or running from bar to bar in my pajamas)


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