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Autumn In Portland

We headed to Portland from Yelm, Washington. We left my Uncle George’s house about 11am. We made a quick stop at a Starbucks on East Yelm Street on the way out of town. It only was 15 miles to get on Highway 5 and was supposed to be a 2 hour and 5 minutes drive. But as you know, we love to dilly dally and looky lou.

I took a short shift in the morning driving but really didn’t like Highway 5 with all the truckers. It was a bit stressful driving through the city of Portland and the GPS went a little nutty because of all the new road construction. It seemed like we were being rerouted every 2 seconds. This was hard on both the navigator (me) and the driver (Larry). There was a bunch of traffic too, probably because it was a Sunday afternoon.

Our lovely home away from home was Pheasant Ridge Rv Park in Wilsonville. The price was high but it had all the amenities we needed. $115.60 for 2 nights. It was 20 minutes from the Airplane Man and 15 minutes from my oldest friend from kindergarten Patti (MacDonald) Caveney. Patti is the oldest ...her birthday in June 23rd and mine is November 2nd. LOL !! I love it. I’m super excited about this stop for so many reasons. One, I haven’t showered since Kelowna Canada ...2 days ago, and I need to do laundry!! This RV park has everything. We even got a little patch of grass on our site. Yeah! We parked the trailer and had some beer and dinner. I made something super fabulous, of course but I can’t remember what!!

After dinner, we took this party to the laundry room. The office sold us 2 tide pods and we were off. While it was washing, we soaked in the indoor hot tub and cooled off in the pool. We met some nice traveling folks and had a good conversation. When it was time to put them in the dryer, I popped out of the hot tub and then showered. It was a great use of our evening time. Everything and everybody was clean again. I was very excited about our adventures the next day!

I packed the truck for the day. We were heading to a nice park close by for a morning walk and explore. I made our usual peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to take for our lunch and some fruit plus water and coffee. I had my exercise clothes on for the walk but brought nicer clothes to change into for the airplane tour and visit with Patti. The park was only 2 miles away, Brown’s Ferry Park.

I was hoping to see a Bald Eagle like their website had pictured but unfortunealy we didn’t. We saw squirrels, a fabulous caterpillar, lots of fall colors and a beautiful egret in the lagoon. We spent about an hour and a half strolling around. It was a very nice park. We had our picnic lunch in the truck, we had parked in a neighborhood because we missed the park parking lot. After lunch. I changed my clothes between the 2 doors on the truck. Larry covered the street side and I believe no one noticed!

We were off to see the Airplane Man!

It was a 20 minute drive. My friend Chris Romo from Sonoma State told me if I ever got up to Portland I Had to go see this!!! On his recommendation I started to communicate with Bruce Campbell (Airplane Man). See the below email exchange ... so interesting. If you want to know more, click on his links. It’s worth the read!

Hi Bruce,
We would love to see your home. We will be in your area 10/7. Can we stop?
Hi Rhonda,
Thanks for your interest in my humble project!
In general you're welcome to an indoor tour when I'm in America, as I am now. And Monday 7 October is fine. When convenient please advise the approximate time you'd like to arrive (13:00 or later is generally best for me).
Please review my lodging guide if you have an interest in an overnight visit.
Please remind me via email one day prior to your visit date.
You're welcome to capture media per my publication terms here or fly drones as described here.
All guests who enter my property must carefully review and agree to all the safety, legal, logistics, and other information at before visiting. If you're unable to access that web page please advise before your visit.
Please follow this shoe related 'sterile procedure' very carefully before ascending my air stairs: Please remove your shoes on the white tiles such that your shoes don't touch the air stairs but your socks don't touch the tiles or ground (so your socks and my air stairs remain clean), then ascend my air stairs in your socks.
My sleep cycles are chaotically fragmented and skewed by Asia and New York connections so I might be asleep when you arrive. Please wake me vigorously with firm knocks on my aft door at the top of my air stairs or calls to 503-628-2936 or both until you rouse me. Please do wake me boldly - I'm eager to provide full cabin and flight deck access for you!
Please be especially careful at the Bald Peak Road / Highway 219 or SW Laurel Road / Highway 219 intersections, which are both compromised by limited sight distance and unusual complexity or awkwardness, yet involve high speed traffic (north / south Highway 219 traffic flows at full highway speed). They're quite dangerous in my estimation.
A substantial adult Concert On A Wing event was hosted on Saturday 7 September 2019. Additional events might occur this summer as well. If you'd like to be added to my events email distribution list please advise. (Removal upon request at any time of course.)
Thanks Rhonda!
O genki de ite kudasai (Be healthy and, by implication, happy please), Bruce
Boeing 727 Home Project Ancillary Information:
Most of the ground based video of my project is available here.
Terrific recent video stories composed by Cindy Her and Dylan Magaster are here and here respectively.
This Portland News story is charming.
These ABC News and Flickr stories are obsolete but well composed.
In late 2012 China Central Television aired a quite charming story posted here and here.
An inspired and beautifully composed motion and time lapse video and music composition by Even Quach is here.
My Olympic Airways SX-CBC aircraft, Mount Parnassus, carried Aristotle Onassis's body from Paris to Aktion, Greece, on its way to his private island for burial, with Jacqueline Onassis and Senator Edward Kennedy accompanying. Images are at here and here.
Hi Bruce
We would like a tour tomorrow at 1300. I agree to the terms of liability and photos. Let me know if you need anything else
Hi Rhonda,
Good, I look forward to meeting you at very roughly 13:00 tomorrow, 7 October. Your arrival time doesn't need to be accurate - please drive safely.
Please follow the shoe related 'sterile procedure' posted at the bottom of my air stairs very carefully before ascending them. I might be asleep when you arrive. Please wake me vigorously with firm knocks on my aft door at the top of my air stairs or calls to 503-628-2936 or both until you rouse me - please wake me boldly!
Safe travels Rhonda!
O genki de ite kudasai, Bruce
Bruce Campbell
15270 SW Holly Hill Road
Hillsboro, OR 97123-9074
Miyazaki Shi
Tachibana Doori Higashi 4 Cyoume 5-13
East Tachibana 401
H. Bruce Campbell
USA cell phone: 503-628-2936
Nippon keitai denwa (Japan cell phone, currently unattended):
In Nippon: 080-9163-6882
From American land lines: 011-81-80-9163-6882
From any cell phone: +81-80-9163-6882
FreePP VOIP: Bruce Campbell (1-503-628-2936)

I know it’s a lot to read but it gives you an idea of what we were in for…..

We did make a wrong turn a few miles down the road. We pulled over to cool off and agreed to get back into the truck together and have a good time with Airplane Man. We arrived at 1300 hours exactly. I did what I was instructed to do. Take off our shoes before going up the air stairs. I went first. I knocked vigorously and waited. I was prepared to see a naked man opening the door at any time (based on the information from his website) and there he was…...standing behind the door. He excused himself to put clothes on and let us in. He was a slightly built man in his 60’s, I believe. He offered us sterile flip flops to wear inside the plane. He said he would show us around the plane, we could ask questions and then we were free to roam around inside or outside of the plane for as long as we wanted. He even said we could spend the night. We weren’t prepared for that on this trip but I would definitely go back and stay longer. His weirdness was right up my ally. Just weird enough not scary weird. He was very interesting and super smart. He answered all of our questions about how the plane was moved there and how much it cost, etc. He showed us the cockpit with a lot of the instruments still intact. I got to play Airline Pilot crashing into the forest of Hillsboro Oregon!!! Lol

He has taken out most of the seats to make his living space. The floor he replaced with heavy duty plexiglass so you can see below (his storage area). I got to use his guest toilet and saw his makeshift shower in the center of the plane. He had a long workspace that resembled a laboratory. I glanced around and it looked like he had 12 laptops on his table while he was using 3 on his couch while we explored. He asked us if we wanted to go outside and climb on the wing or climb on top of the plane. Of course we said yes!! He said he would need to change into his outdoor clothes. Larry was closer than me and was in the middle of a conversation when he stripped down naked right in front of him while talking! I turned away but Larry had to carry on the conversation with averted eyes…...I guess. Did you look Larry? Ha Ha Ha!!

Once outside, we climbed on the wing. We were taking pictures like crazy. Bruce asked if I wanted to jump on the wing. Of course, so both Bruce and I jumped up and down while the wing moved up and down.We got video! He was so excited to share his dream and tell us about how he is trying to do the same in Japan. His vision for recycling these retired aircraft for housing is an amazing concept. I hope to see more of these homes in the future. Hell!!! I would love to live in a 727 like this! We spent way over 2 hours with Airplane Man and it was an experience I would highly recommend.

Next stop was West Linn Oregon to see my fabulous friend Patti. I think we got to her house about 4 ish. She had to stop after school with her youngest Joshua. I think the last time I got to see Patti and her 2 children was over 3 years ago when she came back to our hometown of Petaluma. Coincidentally, at the same time, another one of our elementary schoolmates was visiting me from Texas and we had a mini reunion one day. We drove around in my big blue station wagon, kids sitting in the rear facing back seat and drove out to Old Adobe Elementary School. The kids played on the playground and we reminisced. We drove past all of our childhood homes and lately stopped at mine to visit my mom. She still lives in the house I grew up in. She’s been there 53 plus years.

I am so lucky to have had a friend like Patti for over 50 years. We pay attention to each other lives and get together when it works out. Her children are growing up so much now. Aiden is 14 and in high school and Joshua is 11 and is a middle schooler. They were so friendly at the house and their dogs loved Larry. Both of them piled down on him while he was sitting on the couch. Joshua was very entertaining telling us about The New Archies show and other shows that I hadn’t heard about yet.

I suggested that we go out to dinner as we came around suppertime and I was still enjoying their company. I surely didn’t want Patti to cook for us. Her husband Jim was absent. It was monday night and he had plans to watch the 49ers play at a sports bar. They don’t have cable tv at their house. We will see him the next time. We agreed to eating Mexican food, my favorite and Patti directed us to San Blas on Salamo Road. We enjoyed a yummy meal together, visited and laughed. Patti and I have spent some great times together growing up and she will always be one of my favorite friends! I loved seeing her and her amazing children. She’s a great mom and a super special person. I’m so lucky to have her in my life and for the time we had on this trip! I love you Patti, Aiden and Joshua!

Next stop Gasquet California

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