I arrived in Cleveland at the end of a big-mile days cycle, really not knowing anything about the city…
My hosts were already out at a bar watching the city’s Cavaliers (or CAVS) basketball team – led by LeBron James – in the 2nd all-important playoff match against Boston Celtics.
After being let in to their flat, having a much needed shower, change of clothes and laundry started, I soon joined Jadira and Gladys, and their friends at said bar.
What was to become a fun and long night started with a single local beer (which I enjoyed!) and fries; and we emerged in the early hours from a salsa club some distance away from the city centre.
Rest day started with an attempt to get blogs up to date, but I gave up quickly deciding that this city needed seen. And the weather was perfect!
This truly is a beautiful city!
In many respects, Cleveland reminds me of Glasgow: both developed through river-borne interests, both now largely post-industrial, both taking their cultural identities from a respect for this industrial past and sporting passions, both with excellent universities, museums and music venues, both well familiar of the weather’s capacity to offer rain and sunshine simultaneously as standard. And both are full of friendly locals genuinely proud of their respective cities, and their unique resident identity.
Ever since visiting a couple of times in 2010/11, I have asserted Portland, Oregon as my favourite US city. Well, Portland now has serious competition.
Many thanks to my special hosts, Jadira and Gladys, for sharing their apartment with me, showing me a bit of their fabulous city, for introducing me to their friends, partying with me and teaching (with considerable patience) me some very basic salsa dance moves. Doubly thanks for then allowing me to stay an additional night, affording me a bonus/second full rest day!