Day 4: Observations at McMenamins Hotel

It’s a beautiful misty-rainy morning. Nice, because my body is still exuding heat from the ride out. I’m enjoying a coffee on the veranda at the hotel before the conference starts a half-hour’s walk at Pacific University campus.

The hotel is lovingly maintained. I’m in the “Al Reynolds” room. A mortician who lived at the lodge before it was a hotel, Al apparently learned embroidery and married in his eighties. His portrait, painted on the wall of my room overlooks me while I sleep. It’s actually not at all bad. He must have been kind. It feels that way.

The attendees of the conference have all come to riding at difference points in their lives, some in their fifties. It is at least 50% female–academics, small business owners, and writers. Everyone at the conference feels as I do: riding changed their life profoundly.

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