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Sat. July 7 to Fri. July13- Vancouver WA

Saturday- I had a hair appt. at 9 AM in downtown Vancouver. I arrived and the gal was very nice. She did a good job.

I returned and picked Bob up and we went to downtown Portland to the Farmers Market. The market is located  on the campus of Portland State University. It is a large market with lots of vendors. Last time we were here I purchased a small bottle of some awesome Ice Wine. The vendor was not there this year. Bob had purchased a really nice Sassan, and there were no beer vendors there at all. We purchased some “Cherry Bomb” pepper jelly.

We went to Dot’s Café for lunch. I had seen a review about their awesome burgers. Huh, we arrived and on the weekend they only have a brunch. Darn! So we had mediocre breakfast.

We stopped at Walmart then returned to the MH. We took a short nap, then went to look at the Elks Lodge. Friends Tom and Diane were at the Chehalis TT, our next stop. They said no satellite, poor internet, and no sewer. So we went to the Vancouver Elks Lodge to look at their RV park. It is going to be noisy, but doable. So we are planning to move there if we cannot stay at Route 99. We are hoping they have a cancellation, as the park is full. We cancelled our reservation at the TT Chehalis.

We stopped for gas at the Portland Costco, $3.03 gal. Much better than the $3.56 near us! We ate dinner at home.

Sunday- Our usual laundry and budgeting. Then at around 11, we went to the Vancouver Farmers Market. There were many of the same vendors as in Portland, but this is a very large market also. Dogs are allowed, but we do not take our dogs to these places as they would get stepped on or accidently kicked. 

We purchased some Cranberry-pear Balsamic Vinegar for marinade. We have had this before and love it on chicken.

We stopped at Burgerville, a local hamburger chain. Their lines look like In N Out burger. The burgers were about a 7 on a scale of 10.

We returned to the MH, read, watched TV and ate dinner at home.

Monday- Bob called and got an appt. for the windshield to be repaired at 3 pm. The weather is cooler and cloudy.

The DOT closed the east bound entrance to  I-84 off I-5  in Portland for the next month. So traffic on I-5 was supposed to be bad. Everyone must have decided to move to I-205, then there was a broken down Oregon DOT truck, so traffic is at a standstill on I-205. We are not planning to go far today, which worked out nicely!

We did some tasks around the MH. Then we went to lunch at Ce La Vi, a French restaurant which features crepes. We had a nice lunch and returned to the MH, stopping in at the office on the way into the park. We were able to sign up for 3 more nights, but we have to change sites in the morning. We will move from site 79 to site 84. It is a little closer to I-5, but should still be okay.  We spent the afternoon reading and working on Genealogy. We had a quiet evening at home.

Tuesday- We moved the MH from site 79 to site 84. That only took about a 1/2 hour. We did not put everything away that we usually do when traveling. I moved the car, with the dogs in it, over to the new site. Bob walked the tubing and the water softener over. Then we just backed the MH up, and he drove it the few feet to the new site.

We set back up, then around 11 we left for Pine Street Biscuits. This is a West Coast  restaurant chain, and a staple in Portland. We arrived to find that the line was out the door and down the block. That is usually a good sign!

We walked up to the counter and ordered. They give you a number, you find a seat, and they deliver the food. Neither of us were terribly impressed with the food and we decided it was not worth the calories. Oh well!

Right next door was Great Notion Brewing. This was recommended to Bob by my cousin Mark, so it was on our Portland to do list. Since we had a nice parking place in this busy area, we stopped in for Bob to have a flight.

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Bob enjoyed the flight. He thought that the dark orange beer in the front was very interesting. It was a Watermelon Gose. All of the beers had interesting flavor combinations. By the time he drank the 5, 5 oz. glasses he was done for awhile!

We returned to the MH. On the way back in the park, we noticed that our old site was already filled. We had a quiet evening at home.

Wednesday- It is getting very hot in the area with temps in the high 90’s. We left early and went south to Fort Vancouver. We stopped at the Visitor Center and watched the movie about the Fort. It was very interesting, and the Fort was not what we expected.

Fort Vancouver originally was the site of one of the the Hudson Bay Company’s fur purchasing centers. Fur traders would bring the furs to this location and the company would purchase them, giving them money and/or food as payment.

Eventually, they gave the site to the Army, who increased the size of the Fort. The Fort was used during all the wars, right through WWII. Which is how they now have a General George C. Marshall house, General Grant House, and a General Howard house. General Howard, is who Howard University in Washington DC is named for; it was the first African American College in the US. General Grant never lived in the Grant House, but he visited it while staying in the Fort.

After the movie in the Visitor Center, we went to “ Officer Row”. These houses were going to be demolished. People in the area decided that they should be maintained, so an Historical Society was formed to renovate and save the houses. The house’s overlook the river in the distance, as well as the Fort. The Historical Society has utilized a very interesting public/private concept. Only the 3 houses are open to the public. The Howard House, which we did not visit. The Grant House is a restaurant, and the George C. Marshall House, which we toured. The tour was free. All the other homes were are maintained on the outside as they were, but are rented. Some to business, some have been turned into residential; duplexes or apartments.

We arrived at the Marshall House. For some reason both of my pictures of the outside of the Marshall House did not come out… There were two tours already in progress when we arrived. The tour was only of the first floor, as the second floor is rented to two United States Senators,  Patty Waters and Maria Cantwell. They use the downstairs tables for meetings and see constituents upstairs.

Marshall lived in the house only for 22 months. We entered and started to wander around. We started in the living room.

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The room holds 50 people. I would imagine they need to be very close friends or family as it would get pretty cozy with all that furniture!

Next we went to the visiting room. This room has the table that the Senators staff use.

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Take out the table and this would be my favorite room. The docent caught up with us and we joined one of the tours. The next room was Marshalls office.

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Notice the door to the right of the picture of Mrs. Marshall. She was a heavy smoker. This was originally a window, and he had it replaced with a door to have her step outside to smoke.

The next room was a small museum about Marshall.

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The house is the first in the area to have stain glass windows. You can see some of them in the office above and on this door.

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This is the hallway with the stairs to the Senators offices.

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We went to lunch at the Grant House. This picture came out.

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After a nice lunch, we went to the Fort reproduction.

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In front of the entrance there was a fairly large garden with all sorts of flowers and vegetables.

The entrance would have been $7 but we used our Geezer pass and it was free for us. Our first stop was the housing for the Hudson Bay Fur Traders upper management. There were two families that lived in this house, each having half of the house. The top floor was a storage/ballroom.

The first floor was the housing.

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The bedrooms are painted in bright colors. These are replicas of the original colors.

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In between the two sides of the house, there was a large dining room table. This is where the men ate, as they had working meals. The women and children had their own dining room.

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Because the rooms were small, the kids rooms had beds that rose out of the way and the room was then used for other purposes.

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Below was the kitchen, which was connected to the management house.

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Below is the workers areas.

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Below was a volunteer Blacksmith who was demonstrating his trade. It was interesting and the kids in the room got a real kick out of it.

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There was also a woodworking shop with a volunteer demonstrating. We arrived just as he finished.

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We left and went to an Amazon Lockbox at a Whole Foods to pick up a package. It was our new salad spinner.

We returned to the MH, quickly walked the dogs, and ran to a Brewery in the City Center of Vancouver. We were meeting up with friends Kathy and Brian Mungar. It has been awhile since we have visited with them. They are friends from Breckenridge and still work at the resort. They started the first year we did, now both are paid employees. Brian works in Safety and Kathy works in the ski check.

We had a great time catching up. I had a small cider and they all had beer. We ate dinner there from the food trucks in the parking lot.

Thursday- We decided to go downtown to Blue Star Doughnuts. Everyone kept telling us we had to sample their doughnuts. There was an accident on the bridge, so we had a long line of backed up traffic.

We finally arrived and I dropped Bob off to pick up the doughnuts. I went around the block and found a parking place. I paid the $0.50 for 15 minutes. Bob found me and we ate the doughnuts. To be honest, we thought they were overpriced and not all that great. They were also very runny, so we had chocolate ganache everywhere. Fortunately, we keep napkins and hand sanitizer in the car.

We continued on to the Candy Basket to view the chocolate waterfall. The Candy Basket has been in business since the 1920’s.

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We stopped at Costco for gas, $3.06 gal, then went to Killer Burger for lunch. I guess many folks would like these burgers, but we were not impressed. They were messy and the selections were not what we would like.

We returned home to walk the dogs and relax. We had wanted to go to Joe’s Crab Shack, as it is right on the river, overlooking the I-5 bridge. So we went there for dinner, thinking the view would be awesome. There were a lot of cars in the parking lot, but we are not sure where the people were! The restaurant was mostly empty. Hmmm, not good!

The view of the river was awesome, watching the cars cross the I-5 bridge and the barges travelling upstream. Unfortunately, dinner was pretty bad. The service was excellent, mainly because Rebecca, our waitress, was bored silly. I had shrimp skewers and the shrimp were over cooked. Both meals came with white rice and steamed broccoli, neither of which had any seasoning. It was a very boring meal. Bob had stuffed shrimp and it was okay. We would not return.

Friday- Moving day. We could not purchase any more nights at 99 RV Park, so we left around 9:30 to travel the  7 miles south to the Vancouver Elks Lodge. We arrived around 9:50 after a very easy drive. We parked in a site with 50 amp/water, $20 night. We have good internet and can get satellite. The site was partially under a tree to the west, which is  very good. The temperatures are going to be in the high 90’s while we are parked here. We are staying until Monday.

The primary problem with this Elks Lodge is the location. We are backed up to I-205 so it is very noisy. That is not a problem during the day, but at night, well, sleeping may be a problem.

We ate leftovers for lunch and took a short nap. We walked down to the Lodge for dinner. We stopped in the bar and I had a glass of wine and Bob had a beer. We paid for the Rib dinner, $20 each. That seemed high until we saw the meal. We had enough food for two meals each. The meal consisted of well cooked ribs, potato salad ( no bell pepper), baked beans ( no bell pepper), a large slice of watermelon, and a brownie. We took half of everything (except the brownie, lol) home for another meal.

There are 15 sites at this Elks Lodge and most nights there were 6-8 rigs parked here. We are in site 15.

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