10.01.2009

Oregon Trailing -- Day 2

Apparently this blog world thing is weird to some people.

Like my husband.  And other people's husbands.

But, thankfully, said husbands sometime just decide to step out on faith and trust their bloggy wives and let them head out and meet total and complete skin strangers.  I say skin strangers, because the part that the husbands (and all those other skeptical skeptics) don't understand about close blogger buddies is that, really, our hearts have already met...and it is like we've been friends for years.

Like so with Cathy.

She was a skin stranger.  Until today.  And, oh, how I'm glad we met.  Because she is great.

So amazingly gracious.  And kind.  And loving.  And she suffers from adult-onset A.D.D. like me...so we're kindred, me and her.

Before I launch into details of my day with the Cat-a-Lac, let me just tell you that I have no idea how you Pacific timezone people do it.  Y'all have me so messed up, that I went to sleep at 8:00 last night.  And slept like a baby.  All.Night.Long.  It also could have been caused much in part to the whole getting up at 3:30 yesterday morning, but I'm choosing to blame it on jetlag...because that 2 hour time difference is a kick in the pants.

Because the husband was in an I'm-Delirious-From-Spending-the-Day-Flying-the-Friendly-Skies-In-a-Tin-Can stupor, he let me choose the restaurant last night.  I googled, of course, and after not so much arm twisting, decided on Thai food.  Can I tell you how much I adore Thai food?  Could be because it is just nostalgic for me, having eaten many a plate of street vendor fried rice in my day, or it could be just that it is freakin' amazing.  Either way....love it.  More like adore. 

So we headed out to Singha Thai, and I ate this.




Pineapple Chicken Fried Rice.  And it was delicious.  Just like I knew it would be.

This morning, the husband headed out for meetings, and I hopped in the rental car (which has AMAZING brakes) and made my way southward...towards the home of my MIRL.

While I drove the Oregon freeways (which we call interstates, interestingly enough), I admired the trees.  That sounds so bizarre, what with Arkansas being The Natural State and all, but their trees are different here.  They're all evergreens....and they're just...well...different.  I like 'em.  (For the record...their sky is bigger here, too.)

I pulled up in the driveway of a super cute little house, and I giggled to myself about ringing the doorbell and it being answered by a 400 lb. man who lives with his mama and has thoughts of kidnapping me and chaining me up in his basement.  (Just for the record....if your friend is getting ready to go for a MIRL, don't joke about stuff like that....it tends to make one need to pop a xanax.  Just sayin'.)

Thankfully the door was opened by Cathy.  And she was far from being a 400 lb. man.  Phew.

We hugged.
And chatted.
And hugged some more.
And chatted.
And drank creamer with a smidge of coffee.
And giggled.
And forgot that this was the first day we met.

Because it was natural. And easy. And fun.




And she gave me this.  Isn't it beautiful?  She made it.....and I can't wait until she goes into business, and I can tell her, "I told you so."




After chillin' at her house for a little bit, we headed out for lunch.  We are one-in-the-same, so it took us 3823498347293 hours to make up our minds where to eat.  But, we finally decided on Chipotle...because I'd heard a gazillion people talk about it, and I love being a follower!  Hello.....you people weren't kidding.  YUM.




After another long and drawn out speedy exhibition of decision making skills, we decided just to head out and drive.  We can talk while we drive we decided...so it made sense.

She showed me her town.  And she showed me where she went to college.  And she showed me prisoners.

You think I'm kidding.




I'm not.

Those folks in orange?  Uh...yah.

And then she took me to an Orchard Market which has a real name, but I forgot it due to the scrumptiousness of the apple cider doughnuts that I was shoving into my mouth.  We browsed and shared a chuckle over the marketing genius of folks here in Oregon, and then I found honey sticks.  And decided I HAD to have one.  So I forked over a whopping 20 cents for a plastic pixie-stix full of lemon honey.



Verdict?  Don't waste your 20 cents.

And then we went to Sonic, because we had long determined that if we ever met...we MUST share a date for Pineapple Diet Dr. Peppers.  Because Cat GETS it.  She appreciates and loves the amazingness that is the PDDP.  Smart girl.




And then I discovered that the carhops in Oregon actually wear roller skates.  And now I want to know why the ones in Arkansas don't.  Irks me just a tad.



We had an hour or two before dinner, so we headed out and did a bit of shopping.  We touched the same sweaters and decided that we have the same taste...in clothes and in prices.

We picked up the husbands and headed out for a bit to eat.  Excuse me, a load to eat.  Billy and Cathy took us to The Cheesecake Factory, and I might have thought that I had died and gone to heaven.  It was scrumptious. And the food wasn't too shabby either!  The only thing odd about the evening was our freakishly quiet waiter, and his interesting use of hand gestures.  But we got free cheesecake out of the guy, so he's forgiven.

What'd I eat, you ask?  Well...I was too busy scarfing down the first bites to remember to take a picture, so you are getting the half-eaten version.  The pasta was delish.




And I topped that off with piece of Key Lime Cheesecake.  Whoa Nelly.




And then we posed for pictures.

Don't hurt your eyes.....that's us.  Really.  It just looks like we are in a  cheesecake cave....or a basement! ;)






We had a great time.  We laughed a lot.  We shared stories.  And it was like we were old friends and picked up right where we left off.

Feeling really blessed.  And really full.  And really sad for all the people that don't know what they are missing.

Oregon Trailing Day 2......over.and.out.

20 comments:

Mich said...

Yummy food...so jealous of the fried rice and cheesecake.

So glad you are having a blast and getting to hang out with friends.

Love ya!

whimzie said...

So glad you two got to make a day of it and didn't have to do just one of those blink-and-you'll-miss-it visits.

Glad there was so much food involved, but I hope your Zumba lady doesn't read your blog.

whimzie said...

So glad you two got to make a day of it and didn't have to do just one of those blink-and-you'll-miss-it visits.

Glad there was so much food involved, but I hope your Zumba lady doesn't read your blog.

mer@lifeat7000feet said...

AWESOME, Amber. I know I would heart Cathy too!

My kids love those honey sticks. And me? I just love Chipotle. Is it wrong to be craving it at 6:28AM?

Where were Cathy's kiddos? DId you get to meet those cuties too?

Ginger@From The Cocoon said...

Sounds like you guys had a blast...is it wrong to be a tad jealous? Oh well...I believe all good MIRL should be done with food..and you guys did not disappoint! LOL!

Jessica said...

So happy for you that she wasn't a 400lb man! That necklace is adorable! and I love how the prisoners blend in with the pretty orange flowers =)

New Every Morning said...

I think you need to contact Sonic headquarters, b/c the North Carolina crew (some of them anyway) strap on the wheels.

Cheesecake Factory is my FAVORITE!!!
So glad you had fun with your new skin friend ;)

Carpool Queen said...

I must go visit her so that I can get one of them faincy necklaces. SOOOO cute.

And I'm glad you had Thai while you were there. I had intended on eating Asian while in the PNW, but just didn't make it happen.

Next time.

The Bowden's said...

Oh, sounds and looks like fun. :)

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mimi said...

My comments always seem to be under the Chinese ones??

I'm now craving pineapple Dr Pepper....and Lime Cheesecake.

I love the necklace that Cathy made for you, so pretty. What a fun day!

Kendra said...

What fun you guys are having! Love the food, too. YUM! Cathy's shorter and cuter than I pictured her! Crazy thing, this internet! Tell her she needs to start making those necklaces and selling them in blog land, because I'd like an S to begin with, please! Enjoy your visit. LOVE Oregon!

Jennifer said...

Ummm...half the carhops at our Sonic happen to be preggers!! Just sayin'!!

Glad you had a great time!! You and Cathy look like 2 peas in a pod!!

Miss ya lots!! Have a safe trip home!!

Tiffani said...

What cutie patooties you girls are!!! SO happy you got to meet such a sweet girl. I know your time together will be forever in your hearts!!!

And seriously cute necklace!

Jim said...

Amb,
You know my first thought as I read your blog - "Sleepless in Seattle". Here was this lady flying to Seattle from the east Coast to meet someone she'd not met before. A kindred spirit in your case and Cathy's, and in the midst of it that unique bonding that close friends have who've shared perhaps more closely than many who see each other every day with just casual "how-d-dos".

I'm glad you both had that experience. Talking about being able to "wrap your arms around the world". You can do it with a blog, and when the doors open, even make it a "touch" more.

Speaking of Thai food. We've been eating at a new Thai restaurant here in town and I order what we used to order on the street in Bangkok. Kow-pot-khai. Delicious!
If you all were going to be here for a meal, we might go!

Have a safe flight and we'll see you tomorrow evening.

Love,
Jim-Dad

Alison said...

First off...pineapple rice? Never would have thought of it. You and pineapple. :-)

Second - I think we should write a formal complaint to our sonic management that they're not wearing skates. Ok, so not really, but how cool would that be??!!

Glad you're having fun!

Gretchen said...

Sounds like a perfect day! Lord, I love a good meal or 3. That necklace is gorgeous and so special. Like you.

Jennifer said...

Still pissed.

Michele said...

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the necklace. . . I must have one of these!

Donna said...

How exciting for both of you, but I'm a bit disappointed that I did not get to meet you, being Cathy's mom and the fact that I am from Arkansas and still have most of my family there! Next time I go visit my Mama, siblings, aunts and uncles and cousins, we are gonna HAVE TO meet up somehow. I love it that my daughter has such a wonderful, God-loving friend from Arkansas! Who ever would have thought? God bless you real good, Amber!