The wrapper of my chocolate bar casts shadows in the murky rain-light, geometric shapes on the scarred blond grain of my table. Wood grain is all around me; on the walls in cedar paneling, in the burl-y tables, in the rough-edged wooden shelves that house a small selection of merchandise. Pleasant chatter and the hiss and tamp of the espresso bar fill the air.
Arbor Lodge, in Northeast Portland, has captured me with its homey appeal since we first walked in the door a year and a couple lifetimes ago. Owner Scott, he of the vast sideburns and the gleaming earring, welcomes all to his space full of coffee and community with the expansive air of a village blacksmith. The barista’s smile is a cheery herald of her skill with a cappuccino, and I depart with contentment.
Portland, Oregon / morning / The Arbor Lodge