And excepting my lingering chest cough (which I call my pneumonia), I’m feeling much better. I’m so, so thankful for my health today. I got a little taste of what it felt like to be an invalid — truly unable to do anything for myself, and for what felt like much too long. If one week of illness had me depressed and feeling useless, I can’t imagine what it would be like to be seriously ill for very long. I was feeling downright purposeless, which I knew wasn’t true — but it was easy to feel that way when I couldn’t go to work, didn’t feel like eating or drinking anything, and couldn’t make it for myself if I did, all the while watching my house and carefully planned procedures crumble all around me. This weekend and early next week are catch-up and get ready week, because we have LOTS of exciting events coming up quickly! Only one week from today, Eric and I will be in Sisters for his twin brother’s wedding; we return on Sunday, and then my brother Evan and his girlfriend Sam are coming to visit us during their spring break. They leave on Friday, and so do we — to drive up to Centralia and stay at the McMenamin’s Olympic Club for our 2-year anniversary! We’re hoping despite the business, it will be a much-needed relaxing time.
For those in the Portland area, the local McMenamin’s chain of hotels is a fabulous way to spend a weekend away on a budget. The McMenamins brothers turn old, historic locations into pubs, restaurants, and hotels. They sometimes gets a hard time from some locals for not having the world’s best food or beer selection — but their amenities and options for the price are difficult, if not impossible, to beat. Last year for our anniversary we stayed at the McMenamin’s Grand Lodge in Forest Grove, OR, which was built as a “Masonic and Eastern Star Home for the State of Oregon ‘for the aged and infirm, and the poor and distressed worthy Master Masons, their widows and orphans.'”
For $75 a night, you stay in a basic room with a sink and mirror (toilets and showers down the hall in a “shared” bathroom – which, in my experience, never had anyone in it). However, you have free run of the entire building and grounds: free disk golf, free entrance to the “soaking pool,” a bar and restaurant, and free unlimited access to the movie theater. We ventured into the small town of Forest Grove once to grab coffee and breakfast at a little café, but otherwise spent the entire weekend relaxing at the lodge.
This year we decided to drive slightly farther to experience a new hotel – for just slightly more (I believe we’re paying $80-85/night), we’ll have access to a King sized room with shared bathroom, a bar, restaurant, movie theater, and billiards hall ($5/hr to play). The Olympic Club building has always been a historic Olympia hotel, but according to legend is “brimming with tales of bandits, bars and brothels” and has a decidedly seedy feel to it — in a fun way. Its rooms were once filled with enough rambling to make anyone’s head spin, and some of the regulars were bootleggers with mob ties. No, really.
The plan for this weekend? Do something (anything!) other than laying on the couch watching movies. Birthday party for Bethany tonight, potential bike ride tomorrow, church Sunday! (How we miss that!)
Happy weekend! Love,