Check out the people! Although...
Check out the people! Although not very ethnically diverse (about 90% white with a small hispanic community) it is filled with unique people. There is no such thing as too liberal in Eugene for: clothes, hair, music, politics, eating habits, living situations, transportation options, and spirituality. There is also a good sized gay and lesbian community here. Want to get to know Eugene better? Check the Eugene Weekly, our free weekly newspaper:
http://www.eugeneweekly.com The Eugene Celebration parade - excellent people watching!
WATCH A REAL LIVE VOLCANO
Travel north from Eugene on Interstate 5 for about two and half hours and you can view Mt. St. Helens. Currently the mountain has come back to life after a few years of slumber. At present the lava dome inside the crater is growing and on clear days you can see steam rising from the crater.
About 20 years ago Mt. St. Helens "blew". The whole north side blew into the air and spread ashes and debris for tens of miles. Sixty some people were killed in the erutptions which goes to show: "Don't mess with the mountain."
I remember that day. I was taking a shower, being fairly early in the morning. I remember hearing what I supposed was a truckload of metal ashcans banging along the street in front of the house. Come to find out it was the sound of the eruption, audible some 140 miles from its source. Later, we lived with the anxiety of ashfalls from the mountain. Every once in a while it would burb and throw ash clouds into the air. The ash fell where ever the wind happened to be blowing. We all kept surgical masks in our cars and homes in the event. One time we got caught in an ashfall on I-5 north of Vancouver, Washington. Driving conditions were just dreadful as each car would stir up a cloud of ash thicker than the thickest fog.
Right now we have our eyes on the mountain waiting to see what will happen. Most likely significant events will happen outside our lifetimes as volcanic timelines tend to stretch to hundreds of years if not thousands.
To see a webcam view of Mt. St. Helens, click here: Yahoo
A European retreat in the heart of Eugene!
Outstanding European fare in a cozy, upscale inn at the edge of the U of O campus. Perfect for an intimate dinner, or an elegant dessert. Everything is delicious! It is hard to go wrong at the Excelsior! Just be sure to save room for dessert.
Coffee & Crime
Now how many coffeeshops have a view of a prison? Well, this one does and it is a relaxing place to sip some java on a rainy Eugene day. There is also a nice patio area for enjoying the rare Oregon sun (this is on the side opposite the prison!). Sometimes there is live music, so check out the schedule in the Eugene Weekly. The Beanery only serves coffee from the Oregon-based roaster Allann Bros Coffee.
A Eugene Bistro
Cafe Xenon has long been one of our favorites, mainly for lunch, occasionally for dinner and often for Sunday morning breakfast. Having been a mainstay in downtown Eugene for over 15 years, the cafe recently changed hands. Not having been for a a while Mrs. B. and I decided to see how they were doing so we stopped in for lunch.
Much was the same; the first thing you see is the dessert counter but, alas, it wasn't as filled with as many tempting delights as we remembered. However, the wait staff was as pleasant and efficient as ever, the noise level quite high as usual, and crowd about average.
On paying the bill the cashier (new proprietor?) asked about our meals. Unfortunately, I had to give him a critical review for which he very professionally thanked me. I was impressed with the interest and am confident that the cuisine is being attended to. At least I hope so, as it is still a favorite.
Apparently, they have added a "wine flight" on Tuesday evenings, of which we have not attended. In the past I have always loved the New Orleans Mufaletto at Xenon. Don't know if they still have it on the menu. Another favorite is the Pulled Pork Sandwich. Mrs. B. likes the chicken empanada. Breakfasts feature eggs with delicious home fries and my favorite, Chorizo sausage. Eggs Benedict is on the menu. Also, Guinness on tap, no, not for breakfast. And the desserts are really grand, usually a large selection.
This last visit I had a grilled white fish Po'Boy and Mrs. B. had the vegetarian chili. Unfortunately, the fish was very strong tasting and the black beans in the chili needed to be cooked longer.
One hopes that this was just an anomaly, as lunches and breakfasts here have always been very good.
The place is worth a try.
Flash!! On our last visit I was able to order the Muffaletto and it was supburb. Best ever!!
Mrs. B had the chicken empanada and it was good except the beans were "not right."(What's with the beans, anyway?) We also had carrot cake for dessert and it was devine. Give this place a try.