This is one of those times when I talk to myself in an annoyed voice. Alone. In a bad hotel.
It’s a bland and foggy Tuesday night. I’m in Hillsboro, Oregon, experiencing the foggy wonder this city refers to as “January.” I’m walking back to my discount extended stay hotel from one of those “avenue malls” … which is what developers call a strip mall filled with nice stores, since the owners want more BMW and Audi drivers appearing in their parking lot. I came to this mall for dinner because it’s features multiple restaurants within walking distance of my hotel.
Hillsboro isn’t quite Portland, but close enough to have absorbed some of the culture. If I don’t want to wander into Portland for dinner and drinks, I can quickly drive to any number of local pubs, craft breweries and ethnic restaurants. Portland and it’s associated food culture have been responsible for food trucks, Pok Pok and some of the best fermented and distilled grain by-products that I’ve ever filtered through my liver..
So why the hell did I go the bar at P.F. Chang’s for noodles and screw-cap sake?
There’s nothing bad about P.F. Chang’s, I enjoy the food there. But I’m in Hillsboro! Even if I didn’t want to drive to Portland, the local transportation authority would happily take me in and out of town via light rail … or I can just eat great things in town. My employer’s massive presence in Hillsboro brought some great food and drink with minutes of my humble rented accommodations.
I’m not really annoyed that I ate dinner at P.F. Chang’s.
I’m annoyed that I took the path of least resistance.
Yes, I know I’m not in Hillsboro for four days of drizzle soaked fun. It’s a job, and I enjoy doing it. But it’s been a long day on the job. Landed in Portland Monday night. Tuesday’s first meeting started at 8:00am. Tuesday’s last meeting ended at 6:45pm. I’ve been here just over 24 hours, and now thinking about my second dinner engagement. Today hasn’t been that bad, or that long, but I’m tired and just want to veg out for while.
So I’ll just hang out in my hotel room, leaving Tuesday in the wake of my mediocrity. Some trips feature adventurous food, other trips involve an early bedtime.