In Portland 6-25
Portland is 2 hours behind hometime, which was good and bad. The illusion of sleeping late was nice after the illusion of not staying up until really late. Thursday my peeps went on a day-long tour. I couldn't go because of my delegate duties, but I had most of the day to myself. I rode the maxrail downtown to the Made in Oregon store. I bought some souvenirs there, then went walking around.
But I didn't walk around a lot. Portland is a great town, but it isn't good, even during the day, to walk around alone. Of course, there really wasn't that much I needed to see. I went by Finnegan's, a toy store, then walked down to Pioneer Courthouse Square, called Portland's sitting room. They have concerts there. It's a neat place.
I had my PB sandwich and chips sitting on the square, watching the people.
The best part about having that almost whole day to myself was that I got to see the exhibit hall at my leisure. I got to rummage through Concordia's wares, make the neat beaded cross at one station and just see what I could see. I was lucky; my friends who had to go later didn't have time to see everything because there were so many people and the exhibits didn't stay open very long, considering.
We had delegate orientation to learn how to use the voting machines and I'm always amazed at what people thing is important enough to be addressed at the last minute. Stupid stuff. At the actual voting, one woman actually stood at a microphone and wanted to separate out the mission grants into US and foreign. Like it didn't take months and months to get it all set up the way it was. Crazy.
We had our District caucus, which was everyone from Texas who was there. Fun to see everyone. We had dinner at Muchas Gracias, a Mexican place Laurenda found online. It was a good walk, but delicious. We got some tortillas to go for breakfast with the apple butter I got at Made in Oregon.
The worship service was that night and it was really good. It's great to worship and be a part of such a huge body of (mostly) women of faith. The proclaimer was good. There is a mission to the Makah Indiand of Neah Bay in that District and there were some drummers and dancers that participated in the worship. It was very nice. The vicar there who is about to be ordained spoke on Sunday and he said they have increased their male membership by 50%, which is astounding in any church. Another speaker had put some statistics that when a father takes a child alone to church, that child is 50% more likely to remain in church, but with mothers alone, it's only 15%. 2 Parents bringing as a family is 72%, which isn't surprising, but adding in a father ups the ante quite a bit. And our churches are losing men. There aren't enough pastors or men to be elders, but still most representation is male. President Kieschnick told the group he wanted 50% of the delegates to the District Synodical conventions to be women. I think women could if they wanted to, but who would want to? The LWML conventions are much more civil, from what I've heard.
After the worship, we went to Red Robin for drinks and more fellowship. Then we trudged back to our motel to crash.