My first stop was in the quaint little town of Ashland, Ore. My only regret is that I arrived a bit later than I have planned. I descended upon the southern-Oregon town slightly after 6: 00 p.m. and was greeted by a bit of chaos; an enormous brush fire that consumed nearly both sides of the freeway and took with it 11 homes. What's more, it was happening right down the road from my hotel.
Quite the arrival, and it made the news this morning on the TODAY show. A dash of excitement as I head off on my journey, but I can't help but feel terrible for those who lost their homes. As of the time of this post, I hadn't heard of any lives lost.
My day was broken up nicely. I was able to stop and have a great lunch with my dear friend, Kelli Matthews.We dined outside in the Eugene heat at Marché Restaurant at the 5th Street Market. One who adores a good burger, but who usually refrains, I decided to dive into the burger named after the venue. Served on a brioche bun with aïoli and awesome fries, I was set for my journey to continue on south.
Though so exhausted upon my arrival into Ashland, I couldn't miss out on exploring the sweet town so I headed away from the fire, across the freeway and back in time to the adorable spot that's home to the famed Shakespeare Festival. I didn't have much time, but quickly found a modern Thai joint that was situated directly across the street from Lithia Park. How perfect? The name was Sesame Asian Kitchen, and from the menu selection I read on the door plus a recent article they had hanging up written in the New York Times just in July, I decided this was a good bet. My choice? The Korean Ssäm. Quite a presentation -- the noodles were a bit much to eat around but I managed -- and quite delicious.