Portland, Oregon

Portland, Oregon, is one of the most alternative cities in America. It's a green, cool and incredibly bike-friendly city. And it's a total foodie town. Food carts are the big thing here. They are everywhere and most offer very high quality tasty food. 

Every time we visit big cities, the girls are deeply disturbed by the sight of homeless people and beggars. They ask questions, try to understand how these people ended up on the street, feel sad and helpless. While we were waiting at one of the food cart, Mathilde had spotted a young woman begging on the corner of a street who looked quite unwell. She decided to buy a bratwurst for her with her own money. It was a very touching moment when she gave it to her.

JF spent a few day working at Stumptown Coffee while the girls and I explored the downtown area. We spent a few hours at Finnegan's Toy store (and good 30 minutes of those playing with wind-up toys and laughing!)

We spent more than 5 hours (over the course of 3 days) at Powell's City of book, the largest independent used and new bookstore in the world.

On another day, we walked Hawthorne Blvd and had a lot of fun in the vintage second-hand clothing stores. The girls even found their Halloween costumes!

We also went for a soak (and a shower!) in the beautiful outdoor heated pool of the Kennedy School, a 1916 school turned into an hotel, restaurant and theater. 

One day, we went to Washington Park and visited the rose garden while JF worked in the elephant house, an open building (with electricity!) that once housed the first elephant coming to Oregon from Thailand. We also went for a hike in the beautiful trails of that park.