Sometimes it is the ingenuity, inventiveness and courage of total strangers that can provide you with that little push that you need to keep going down what is sometimes a difficult path. I don’t mean to sound all dramatic or anything. It is not like I was climbing Mount Everest or saving lives. I was just working 2 full time jobs for the last 6 months and my candle was burned right down to the nub.
I had been looking forward to our trip out to Portland. I had received some great restaurant recommendations, booked a room in a great little hotel, scheduled some much needed vacation time and registered for the International Food Blogger’s Conference.
As expected – the food was great. If you are interested in the restaurants we went to and thoroughly enjoyed you can check the list at the bottom. The conference was interesting, there were some great speakers and I felt like I left with some valuable information. If you are interested it is being held in Seattle, Washington next year.
But it is not the food, Portland or the conference that this is all about. This is a story of 2 people with whom I crossed paths and in doing so found myself re-inspired and motivated all over again.
Her name is Elan and his is Ben. Our interactions were fleeting at best and each of them had a story that weeks after my trip to Portland concluded, I have found myself sharing with others.
Elan after determining that her career in dog training was no longer rewarding because she had realized she was training the owners and not really the dogs, decided to combine her love of dogs, nature and food. She began to train her dogs to find truffles and has started a company called Temptress Truffles. She makes amazing Truffle Salted Caramel Sauce and I tucked a little of her passion and ingenuity in my back pocket after meeting her.
Ben has started Oregon’s first salt harvesting facility since Lewis and Clark. Wow! His salt has a nice clean finish and if you can get your hands on some, I highly recommend it. He told a story of perseverance, of ruined batches and of not giving up. Keep an eye out for Jacobsen Salt.
Thanks Elan and Ben for inspiring me when I needed it and giving me a little burst of inspiration by simply following your dreams.
Restaurants we enjoyed in Portland
The Ox - oxpdx.com
Pok Pok - www.pokpokpdx.com
The Bent Brick - thebentbrick.com
Riffles NW - rifflenw.com
Shigezo - shigezo-pdx.com