Portland Timbers defender defender Vytas, away with the Lithuania national team for 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers, took a moment before he left to sit down with Timbers.com to discuss adjusting to life in Portland, dining out, and planning his next trip.
Upon arriving in Portland one month ago, Vytas has quickly fallen in love with the picturesque scenes Portland has to offer, along with the spirit of the city.
"The most surprising thing is that the city is so natural, with the mountains, forest and the sea. The people are very healthy. They're always doing sports and you can always see people hiking, going on the bicycles. Also, there are so many restaurants to choose from and numerous small, local-owned businesses to choose from. It's not just fancy restaurants where everyone goes. So, I think that the whole spirit of Portland is very fresh and open-minded and that's what surprised the most."
With Portland offering numerous restaurant options, Vytas has forced himself to visit a different place when he goes out to eat, rather than sticking to just one restaurant.
"I like everything, I'm not a picky person. So everywhere I go I really enjoy the food. I enjoy the place, and every time I try something new I really like it. But, so far, I have a rule where I always have to go to a different place, just to try everything, so I don't have a particular place that's my favorite."
When it comes to similarities between Portland and the previous cities he's played in, Vytas admits that the close proximity to water, along with the supportive and friendly fans, remind him of home the most.
"The water. Everywhere that I lived in Europe was surrounded by water in some capacity. Also, the fans here are incredible and very friendly, similar to Holland and Sweden."
While in the Pacific Northwest, Vytas hopes to hit the hiking trails during the offseason and is also planning a trip south to visit California for the first time.
"There are a bunch of things that I'd like to do. There are mountains that I'd like to hike to see. I would also love to go down to California to check it out. There are so many things to do here. Some of them need to wait until the offseason, though, because I can't go hiking for two miles right now to make sure that I'm fresh for the games."