I returned yesterday afternoon from a three-day trip to Portland – a work-related conference took me down there, but I was fortunately able to squeeze in some time to enjoy the city and hang out with family.  It was nice to have a few hours to myself to wander through downtown with my camera – I was reminded of how much I love the city’s textures and charm.

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Portland has this unique industrial richness to it that imparts a sense of age of vibrancy to the street fronts and neighborhoods.  The brick warehouses and historic water towers of the Pearl district, the fire escapes that zig-zag across the fronts of so many buildings, the facades in varied colors of stone and tile…  I’m a sucker for all of it.

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And for better and for worse, the ‘grittier’ areas are slowly being infiltrated with trendy cafes, boutiques, and galleries.  I love coffee, fashion, and art, so far be it from me to complain, but I hope that these new establishments are able to respectfully work within the existing architectural and urban character of the city.

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Ahhhh, I love this city…