Airbnb Stories: Running a 420 friendly Airbnb

Running an Airbnb in Portland Oregon allowed me to legally offer marijuana to guests which I didn’t mind if they smoked in the house. Public consumption is illegal. Out of towners need to be aware of this. It’s the main reason I won’t allow smoking weed on the front porch or out back. Don’t get me wrong, you will smell the distinct smell of Mary Jane while you move throughout the town. Technically though….. and not all cops are cool.

I used to be a cigarette smoker. “Used to” being the operative words here. It has been 12 years since I quit. It is by far has been the best thing I have done for myself. For that reason alone, there is no smoking Tobacco on the property. That’s right, not even outside in the backyard. Sorry not sorry.

You can find a marijuana dispensary in every neighborhood. Several actually. There are two dispensaries within walking distance from the house. The dispensary that was a bit further was one of my favorite places to go therefore I referred many many guests there. So many guests, that after some time, one of the budtenders they asked me if I was the “Julie” who was referring all the people. Yes, yes that’s me.

At some point the manager, at the time, approached me with a promotion I could not resist.

He had discount cards made for each of my guests to receive 20% off of their purchase. He gave me a laminated version of this discount card. They tracked how many cards came from me by assigning them the same number. That number is on my laminated card. They wanted to make sure the promotion didn’t result in a loss for them which means they also tracked how much of a discount I received along the way. I love this deal! It is a win win for all parties involved.

As a result of this dispensary promotion and laws in Portland for recreational use, I made welcome kits for each of the rooms. There was a small basket filled with paraphernalia and either a small nug or perhaps a leftover joint. There was hemp wick, a lighter, a small cheap $5 glass pipe and an ashtray.

You wouldn’t believe how much was weed paid forward. In hindsight it makes sense. My guest were traveling and they couldn’t travel with it so they left it behind. It wasn’t always appealing to me. I felt it kind to leave for my guests.

One time there was a sweet foreign guest who didn’t know what 420 stands for. She was very surprised! She rolled with it.

Another time I received the best review about the 420 vibe in the Airbnb house. The house was 3 bedrooms, two of which were for guests and the big bedroom was mine. Sometimes guests dealt with each other. I was always around.

I’m sorry- am I being too loud?

The longer I live the more it seems socially acceptable to be loud until 4:00 a.m.

People aren’t so tolerant of being loud at 6:00 a.m.

I don’t see the difference

People are sleeping at 6:00 a.m. you say

People are also sleeping at 10:00 p.m. – 4:00 a..m.

One time I went camping with my boyfriend at the time. My friend Natalie, along with her husband and children (whom were young adults), joined us for a night. We were having so much fun. It was a beautiful spot by the river. We were grilling for dinner, playing silly games, and having fun hanging out. Natalie and I have a lot in common. For one, we both share a love of electronic music. She likes Trance and we just have to forgive her for that.

I have always been early to bed and early to rise. This night would be no different. Going to bed early made me feel like a boring person in my 20’s and 30’s. I still feel boring at 46. I also feel well rested.

No matter where I am, my eyes want to close no later than 10:00 p.m.

The people camping next to us had different plans.

I realize that people are allowed to spend their time in nature however they like. I certainly was following my heart. Our camping experiences were going to be radically different.

They had their party, enjoyed their beers and listened to their music until the wee hours of the morning.

The following day, I woke up early. It was time to make breakfast. Natalie woke up and joined me shortly after I started preparing food. We both like to listen to music making meals. Insert electronic music dance party at 6:00 a.m.

Rise and Shine fellow campers.

If they can play music and party when people are sleeping at night, what is the difference for me to play music in the morning when I am awake and ready to have a good time?

The answer is nothing. Nothing is different. Spare me your evil eye and complaints that you are trying to sleep.

These pancakes are calling my name.

Roofie gone wrong

Rohypnol: otherwise known as the date rape drug. It is a strong benzodiazepine. It’s not available legally in the United States. In other countries, doctors sometimes use it as anesthesia before surgery.

Rohypnol used to come as a white tablet that didn’t have a smell or taste. Drug companies now make it as a light green pill with a blue core. If someone puts it in a clear drink, the liquid turns blue. Some generic pills may not have the blue dye.

When I was in college, they held an event that was intended to educate young ladies how easy it is for someone to slip a pill into your drink without you knowing. They served non alcoholic beverages and used candy as the “pill”. The event was only 30 minutes long and towards the end you looked at your drink when they told you to in order to see if there was a piece of candy at the bottom. If there was then you didn’t notice someone slipped it in there and their point was made.

I am not a big drinker however I did go out to the bars a lot in my twenties. I even was a bookkeeper for a bar in Austin, Texas.

I went to see Marcy Playground at La Zona Rosa in 1998 with my jerk roommate. A couple of his friends went also. They like to party. I drove everyone there. It was the beginning of the show therefore I went to the bar to get a cocktail. My standard Capitan Morgan’s Rum with Sprite, tall not a double with a lime. I didn’t notice anything odd and went back to join the group of guys. I had maybe one or two sips of the drink and I didn’t feel well.

I excused myself to sit down towards the back of the room. There was a platform big enough to squat on. I put my head between my hands for so long and thought it would pass. I felt horrible, really really bad. I couldn’t figure it out. I don’t normally feel bad. I hadn’t had anything to drink. I couldn’t shake the feeling and eventually made my way back to the bar area. There were chairs to sit down in a particular section. It was off to Stage Left, away from the crowd squished together to see the show. The bar was crowded also but there were chairs!

At one point, I remember a couple of guys trying to talk to me. I remember they were sitting across from me and all I could see were their shoes. I remember uttering, I can’t talk to you right now, I don’t feel good and I’m going to throw up. This is all I remember. I was awakened by a person that worked there, shaking me awake. I had passed out with my head in a corner, body facing the nook, sitting in a chair. She asked if I was alright. No I answered, I am not alright. It occurred to me instantly that I looked as if I was drunk or messed up-passed out in the corner when in reality something happened to me. I followed up with that – I’m not fucked up, something happened to me.

I looked around for my jerk roommate and his jerk face friends. They were nowhere to be found.

I found my car and drove myself home. I only lived 10 minutes away.

When I got home, all those jerks were there. I become upset at the sight of them. What did they think happened to me? I drove them there, did they not think I would drive us home? They took said they looked for me and when they didn’t find me, they took a taxi.

I explained what happened to me and the response I got was – Damn dude, wish I had some of what you were on. I took myself straight to bed.

In hindsight, I am beyond grateful I didn’t get raped.

Curiosity makes me wonder the reason I wasn’t removed from the venue. It also makes me think the bartender was in on it.

Always keep an eye on your drink people. The person making it, the person serving it and the entire time you are drinking it.

Car2Go is now a no go

Car2Go hasn’t operated in Portland Oregon since 2019. I used to use it a lot!

In 2015, I saw one in Amsterdam, when I was travelling throughout Europe

These little cars would get me further faster. I am a bike only girl. In a pinch or if I wanted to arrive looking nice, there were Car2go options with bike racks on the back. You would look for this blue, circle, bicycle symbol to pop up when you hovered over the options near you on the app. The bike rack wasn’t ideal to use properly therefore I didn’t. After a couple of trial and errors, I found a secure, easy way to attach my bike that worked for me.

They want to charge you by the minute and they want you to start the rental before being able to use the bike rack.

One time, I received an email from Car2go asking for participants for an in person survey. I wanted to give my feedback and decided to attend.

It was 2015 and it just so happened to coincide with President Barak Obama coming to town.

I rode my bike over to their meeting location on the West side. Riding a bike allows you to move through the city differently then by car or on foot. I didn’t notice the street closures or traffic building up.

When I arrived, I was the only person that showed up. We waiting 15 minutes after start time and decided to proceed without anyone else. There were five men from Austin, TX. They sent out 500 email, received nine replies for participation, and ended up with just me. Since I was already on display, I said no to their request to record the focus group.

They were curious about how users are interacting with the bike racks. It turns out a lot of them are being returned broken and they couldn’t figure out why.

Eventually they asked me to give them a demonstration. As we walked towards a Car2go with my bike, I mentioned that if they wanted me to show them what I really do then they have to promise not to revoke my privileges.

They will revoke your privileges if you get into an accident that is your fault. I learned this the hard way. It was your classic accident where I was crossing an intersection through a residential neighborhood and I couldn’t see the lanes furthest from my view. I was halfway through the intersection. A pregnant girl T-boned the vehicle. Thank goodness no one was hurt.

After this, I would never use a Car2go again. Thanks for the memories.

Crying at the Louvre

First they were tears of sadness and then they were tears of joy.

It was my first time to travel to Europe. I went with a friend I have known for a long time and had not seen in a long time. We were both 40 years old, single and finally had jobs that allowed for us to travel internationally. She makes twice as much money as I do but that really doesn’t matter.

We started our travels in Amsterdam. We only stayed for a night since that is where we landed. Our plans were to see France for a week followed by a week in Italy.

After one crazy night in Amsterdam, we took a high speed train in the morning to Paris.

The train was a 3 1/2 hour ride. My friend is the one who wanted to go to France so I let her plan our week there. I would have done anything and if there was something I really wanted to do, we put it on the list. The same for her. I wanted to go to Italy so I planned all of our Italy adventures.

One of our days in Paris was a rainy day which made it the perfect day to check out some museums. In addition to the Louvre, we would go to the Musee d’Orsay.

We started our museum day when the Louvre opened. We knew it would be busy.

If you have not been, this museum is the largest museum in the world. We were making our way through the museum when at some point it was time to use the restroom. As we continued on, a piece of art caught my eye therefore I reached for my cell phone to take a picture and couldn’t find it anywhere. As the reality of the situation descended upon me, I raced back to the last place I knew I had it. It had only been an hour since we arrived and yet the museum was filling up quickly. Tears started to fall down my face as I moved through a sea of people going the opposite direction saying ” excuse me please, pardon me”. I made it to the ottoman where I last had my phone and sat down for a full on cry since my cell phone was no where to be found. Suddenly my friend, whom you would think would have been supportive, is giving me a hard time for crying in public and is accusing me of not being able to control my emotions. This makes the stressful situation worse. We start to get into a bit. How dare she criticize me?! It makes no difference to me what other people think. I am not afraid to show emotion in front of others. I did not involve other people in my situation. We just got to Europe. We aren’t traveling home together. How am I going to get another cell phone right away > set up in the way I needed? Besides, all the photos and contacts gone-

This woman working at the Louvre, in the Red Room, we were sitting/arguing in- approached us. She only spoke French. I only speak English and some Spanish. Our conversation was non verbal and you could tell she was telling me not to cry and not to worry. She pointed to a sign in the room that provided the room number. Somehow managed to communicate that I needed to go downstairs to “information”. I stopped crying, went downstairs, and found the place she was talking about. Stood in line for a few minutes and then told the person that I lost my cell phone in Room #. They walked away and came back with my phone!!

I couldn’t believe it. I told my friend we had to go back and find that lady so I could thank her. No words were needed when she saw me approaching with a large smile on my face and my arms open wide to embrace her with thanks. As we hugged, tears of joy rolled down my face.

Can you believe it? I lost my cell phone at the Louvre and got it back.

Bucket List Hot Air Balloon Ride was dumb.

Why is it so hard to do things as a Single person?!?!?!

Do you know how long it took me to feel comfortable to do things by myself?! When I was younger, I would pretend to stand outside the movie theater “waiting for a friend” until the last minute and then go watch the movie by myself. It was the first activity I could muster up the courage to do solo.

Shopping is easy to do alone. Grocery Shopping and Clothes shopping. Even though you won’t have a friendly opinion, I found it to be a shame free solo activity. You can always ask the sales clerk for their opinion. Be Careful- their motivation for saying nice things could be money via a commission. (Random Strangers in the store are good for an honest opinion)

Going on a Hot Air Balloon Ride has been on my bucket list for some time now.

The pandemic has changed the way their business operates. I understand. I want to be safe which is why I chose this outdoor activity to get out of the house after 6 months.

Currently the basket for the Hot Air Balloon is divided into four corners. Each corner can hold two people and they won’t allow a single person to take up a corner. How am I ever going to get on this hot air balloon? He said if the balloon was already going up and there was an empty corner, they would let me join.

I found a friend to join! Yay!! Then a week before our trip he hurt his leg. I called the hot air balloon place to ask if I could modify the reservation to just me. They would let me go by myself if and only if they didn’t resell the seats. The last minute change was going to work to my advantage.

They didn’t sell the seat. I got to go by myself. All the details were different. The ride was switched from 6:30 am to 3:00 p.m. It was a hot sunny day. The air for the balloon made it even hotter. Everyone was miserable. You could see it on their faces. Sweat dripping down for the entire ride. I sat down a few times in my tiny square. If there was another person with me, I wouldn’t have been able to do that. We didn’t go very high. We didn’t go very far. We didn’t travel fast. We didn’t feel a breeze in the air. The view was beautiful.

We landed in a farming field. They had a couple of spots to use. They made friends with the farmers. When we landed they gave the farmer a bottle of wine. They wanted us to help push the air out of the balloon ( that was fun ), tie up the balloon and push the basket into a trailer ( I couldn’t do either of those with a frozen shoulder). Then we loaded up into a van for our thirty minute ride back to the airport.

Even though I wanted the money I paid for this adventure back , I still felt pressure to tip. I wouldn’t do it again.

Don’t take my word for it. Maybe you will love it. I hope you do find out for yourself considering what the experience cost.

My favorite part: Crossing something off my Bucket List.

Pantomiming tampon in Rome

It was a Friday evening, at a dinner table for two, at a classic Italian pasta place, on a sidewalk somewhere in Rome. I was eating dinner with my friend Kim who I was traveling Europe with. We had landed earlier that day and weren’t staying long. We had train tickets to the Almafi Coast on Sunday. I shouted ” Go Big or Go Rome ” for the entire 36 hours we were there.

If you are a women reading this, you will be able to relate. One minute you are living your life and the next minute you think you feel blood releasing from your vagina onto your legs or into your underwear -if you wear them 😉

At the time I was 40 years old and already perimenopausal. I didn’t think I would even get my period the month I traveled.

I performed “the check” and sure enough, I found myself in a situation. It was around 8/8:30 pm and shops close early there. I asked our waiter where the nearest convenience shop was located, got the check and we made a mad dash for it.

Upon entering, there was only one gentlemen working. He only spoke Italian. I speak Spanish and it didn’t help. Speaking English wasn’t helpful either. Time was of the essence!! I tried making a sad look and rubbing my belly. It wasn’t working. I made a look of pain and couldn’t think of anything else to do but pantomime it. I put my leg up and made a motion toward my vagina like I wanted to put it there.


It worked. I got what I need and off we went back to our Airbnb for a hot shower, to crawl into bed and laugh ourselves to sleep.

When I am old and look back on my life, this will be a memory I think of fondly. Life continues to unfold as time goes by and I hope you can laugh at yourself instead of being embarrassed.

When in Rome 😉

There is no such thing as (mostly) vegan

I got a new upstairs neighbor weekend before last.

I wonder how long will it be before I hear some sex noises? The Sounds of Fucking

I have had a delightful 1.5 month break. Since we are still in a pandemic, people aren’t on the move as much and the apartment above me has sat vacant since the end of November. I couldn’t be happier.

I have really taken advantage! I have been listening to music and movies in a louder than normal fashion

When I saw someone moving in, I had to pop into the hall and introduce myself. I am always baking treats & love to share. I also wanted to know if one person or two was moving in 🙂

Turns out she is single, which doesn’t answer all my sex noise questions.

I started to explain… I like to bake, I am vegetarian, I eat well / organic / dairy free when she mentions that she was vegan until recently. She went to see a nutritionist. Since then she has started incorporating eggs and fish into her diet. I can appreciate that. Lately, I have been hearing how challenging it is to get all the nutrients you need from a strict vegan diet. Did you know that vegans do not consume honey?!

As soon as I learned, I knew I could never be a vegan. I was mentioning this to my new upstairs neighbor when she started to launch into her thoughts and feelings on the topic.

Bringing up being a Vegan in Portland, Oregon is like bringing up working in the strip club in Anywhere in Life. Once you get on the subject – good luck getting off it.

I was bored of the conversation three sentences in. Especially when she said that if you eat vegan during the week and non vegan food on the weekends that you can be ( mostly ) vegan. Ummmm, no you can’t.

How bout I am mostly skinny during the week except on the weekends when I am not?

By pure definition alone you don’t get to claim the label. There isn’t a grey area here. You either consume animals / animal byproducts or you don’t. Vegans don’t get to walk around with leather purses.

I felt the judgement rising in me. I did express that I didn’t think you could claim a word that communicates things to others if it doesn’t really apply to you. Then I changed the subject to say I had some treats to share. The whole reason I brought up food in the first place. Was she interested in some Peanut Butter Maple Bars or Banana Nut Muffins? She wasn’t because she just ate to which I retorted , You don’t have to eat it now. How could I think she would be interested with the tensions rising between us? Probably all my fault. I don’t know why it bothered me so much for her to misrepresent being vegan.

A few days later, I made some “peace offering” chocolate chip oatmeal cookies and put them in a Ziploc bag with a note on her door that said “I hoped she was settling in nicely to the apartment and to enjoy the cookies whenever”

I haven’t spoken to her since. I want to have a nice relationship with the people I share living space with. Even if it is the shared laundry area in the basement of the building we live in. There are only eight apartments in the building. Four of them are Studio apartments.


I heard her and her friends plodding down the stairs and out the front door of the building without masks on, shouting “Fuck it, lets go to the bar”.

Oh no. This says it all. I don’t want to sum up a person I don’t know however this speaks volumes. Red Flags are flying high.

I will come back and update this blog when I hear sex noises. So far, 10 days and counting noise free.

Say a little prayer for me ❤

Airbnb: No Good Deed Goes Unpunshined

When I moved into the house, I inherited everything that came with it. The slow filling flapper less system toilet. The creaky wood floors, the ill wired electrical system, the too tiny pipes for the water pressure, etc.

In the bathroom there is an old claw tub with one of those shower curtains that goes all the way around.  It hangs from the ceiling by the shower head and into the wall on the opposite side.  The wall isn’t solid and the screws have worn and the whole system is wobbly.  I have been hard pressed for an aesthetically pleasing fix. 20180502_064317.jpg

My guest this week mentioned he has the same claw tub at home.  He said that he has the same issue and he found a way to make it more stable.  He asked if I had a tape measure however it was late, I was ready for bed and said we could talk about it the next day.

In the morning on my way out the door, I reiterated that I would like to hear about this solution he has enacted before bed that day since he would only be around for another night.  Turns out, I did not see him.  I was in bed before he came home.

The following day I came home from work and was reading a book on the couch in the living room when he arrived.  He had come home earlier than the previous nights. He surprised me with bringing the things to MacGyver the shower.  What a nice gesture! Not many guests go out of their way to do something nice therefore  my heart-strings were being tugged on big time.

How much do I owe you? $15 he says. Hmmm- I don’t have that right now. I wanted to hear about how you fixed it.  I am not sure I would do the same thing. Even if I liked his idea, I wasn’t prepared to fix it before taking care of my tax bill to the IRS AND I was only willing to pay $3-5 to fix it.

He purchased unnecessary parts.  He didn’t measure the length from the curtain rod to the ceiling and bought 4 pieces of chain that were too long, a package of hooks and four metal rings.  I already had a hook for the ceiling and an extra ring for the curtain rod.  The only thing I would have needed is a proper fitting chain.  I am pretty sure that would have cost no more than $320180502_064242.jpg

So now here I am between a rock and a hard place because a guest was kind enough to take action and do a nice deed. It would have been nice if I was in a position to give him the full amount however I would be doing a disservice to myself by doing so.  I wasn’t going to hand over $15 that I didn’t have when all I really wanted to do was honor him in hearing his solution. I ended up telling him I didn’t have the money and I didn’t like how the solution “looked” so I would use one ring and one chain.  He understood and gifted it to me.

No good deed goes unpunished.

Would you have reimbursed him the $15?