Friday, November 22, 2019

Ah Portland!

Late Autumn in Portland, Oregon

Now, what does that sign say?

As we know, all too well,
"Life is a constant battle
between the heart and the brain.
But guess who wins . . ."

Ah Portland! Ah humanity!

The pervasive homelessness that we saw while walking around Portland was very sad; it was painful to witness such evident despair. We did not see this problem when visiting Switzerland in September or Prague in October. On the other hand, those two places were plagued by relentless graffiti -- and not the artistic kind! Everywhere you looked, there was scribbling and defacement, even on centuries - old buildings. A shameful sight!

Lausanne, Switzerland

Prague, Czech Republic

Still, despite the urban issues, I would always choose to visit the city over the country.

One Portland friend responds: "I agree with you about the homeless in Portland and hear it debated frequently on OPB news shows. There is a general problem in Portland of new wealth and developers constantly removing affordable housing (as has occurred in many other cities). Even if agreements and plans are eventually reached, it will take years to carry them out (also true of the bridges and light-rail crossings between Vancouver [WA] and Portland; I now assume that won't change until they collapse after earthquakes). Every city has its problems but, like you, I prefer big cities as a tourist and like being within close range of a city, even a medium-sized city like Portland."

Dining With Dear Friends
The Zeus Cafe at the Crystal Hotel, Portland

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