February 10-11 2012

Enjoying a stroll in the delightful Santa Barbara Botanic Garden with Nancy and Michi.
More, and then later in the afternoon I headed out...
...to spend the night at a way hip and cool guest house in the foothills of the Santa Ynez valley.
Another view. I failed to catch any pictures of the many extremely colorful and entertaining residents and guests.
From around the 20 acres of guest house property.
There's another dog just like this one, also the color of the road only 10 years younger, both so friendly and lovable.

In the morning the dogs wandered through the house with thick, caked mud on their 'legs' up to their 'knees', shedding, licking, and passing gas, the state of so many dogs of my acquaintance.
The oak trees, demanding to have their picture made.
By the side of the road.
I took a buzz into Los Olivos for a look-around. I would not have recognized Los Olivos as it is now many streets wide and deep of small quaint-designer buildings all occupied by wine tasting establishments.
It's nice in here with an especially appealing bar and lounge and the restaurant gets good reviews.
The Santa Ynez valley, all about the wine...
...and what it looks like from the guest house.
The next morning on the way back to Santa Barbara I stopped off in Solvang.
Blocks and blocks of this. Shopping...
...and the Mission Santa Ynez in Solvang.
Back in town now to go with Michi to the harbor to watch her ukulele group play. It was fun, and an inspiration!

Michi is always trying to get folks to say ukulele as you would in Hawaiian...oo-(as in moose)-coo-leh-leh. She's about as successful as I am pronouncing karaoke as you would in Japanese...kah-rah-oh-ke. It's just not going to take with the folks. How karaoke turned into care-ree-oh-key looks to me like a nice topic for a term paper.
Harbor views.

Then in the late afternoon I drove on to...

I arrived around sunset and headed right up to Meditation Mount. What they say: "Our Mission is to promote the building of an enlightened and compassionate world through the power of creative meditation, inspirational educational programs, and community-based events focused on the practical application of the following universal spiritual principles."

It's a wonderful setting and speaks to the whole sense of Ojai and perhaps what it is Beatrice Wood found so inspiring.
Actually, he's on the phone...
The group gathered for the view.
Then after a restful night in a cozy motel I took the easy drive home.
Various 'run-ups' to Santa Barbara 2005-2011

The war memorial constructed on frequent Sundays.
A sunset view from the pier.
The Cousins, Sharon and Nancy and I went up for a fun-filled overnighter.
The skateboard park near the pier...
...and the birds that hang out nearby.
Oh yeah.
A view from the grounds of the Vedanta Temple...
...and inside the meditation room.
Michi! at her front gate.
The Botanic Garden and The Willow House, a temporary art project.
A scene from one of the Farmers Markets around town.
Lovin' the cats.
The Presidio and some details from their website: 'Founded April 21, 1782, the Santa Barbara Royal Presidio was the last in a chain of four military fortresses built by the Spanish along the coast of Alta California, then a wilderness frontier. Others had been established at San Diego, San Francisco and Monterey.

'Padre Junípero Serra, well known for his leadership in founding the California missions, blessed the site of the Santa Barbara Presidio four years prior to the establishment of the Mission of Santa Barbara in 1786. El Presidio de Santa Bárbara State Historic Park encompasses much of the original Presidio site and is located in modern downtown Santa Barbara at the intersection of Santa Barbara and East Canon Perdido Streets.'
Me and Nancy strolling around her fabulous new neighborhood in Hope Ranch.
The Santa Barbara Mission.

Ms Wiki, abridged: Founded December 4, 1786, as the tenth mission for the religious conversion of the indigenous local Chumash—Barbareño tribe of Native American people.

The earthquake on December 21, 1812, destroyed the existing buildings, after which that the construction on the current Mission was begun and then dedicated in 1820. The towers were considerably damaged in the June 29, 1925 earthquake, but were subsequently rebuilt in 1927.
Chalk drawings in the Mission parking lot.
A park near the Mission.
From Union Station in LA...
...a few views from the train ride.
Another one...
...and one more.
December 10-12, 2008

I spent a lovely couple nights with Michi. Remember Michi, the woman I met in Mexico?

Michi is house-sitting one of those 1920s Montecito estates, Montecito being a really Really upscale town just south of Santa Barbara. Every day we get the NY Times, delivered. We are SO going to miss it when all the newspapers are gone!
A view out the dining room window.
You can see these bird-feeders just beyond the potted plants above. The owner of this home, much like my mother used to, sits a lot of the day...
...delighting in her birds.
On the patio.
This is incontestably the most most wonderful cat alive today. During the day he was out being a cat. In the evening where I sat, he sat there too, purr-bombing, and exuding essential catness. Each night he slept curled into my arm pit.

In the morning he licked my nose.
One of the side yards...
...and this is the backyard. There's a big garden there, beyond the pool.
I took a short stroll to the beach crossing over the 101. Here's the thing. You have to convince yourself that the 101 is an ancient river, making travel possible and bringing family, friends, and wealth to your life. Otherwise it's just a noisy, annoying highway that you can hear from all around town, and it never shuts up.
From a neighborhood All Saints by the Sea Episcopal church. Over the entrance to the church it says 'Bide a Wee and Pray'. Exactly that.
Merry Christmas! Marija and all y'all, you know who you are, this one's for YOU!
The sea. Ahh.
One of the many magnificos on the beach.
AmTrak, right along the coast.
Notice those high hedges grown surrounding every property throughout Montecito.
This is the brother of the perfect cat. He has been banished to the outside because of beating up on the very old cat. That's three cats if you're counting, and then the two dogs, making five animals to care for. Which is slightly less trouble than previously when seven animals lived here.
I should tell you Michi had a catering company, has taught cooking classes, and makes food that tastes like you are in a dream of Good Food. She has really got the touch. The YUM touch.

So while I was there I was treated to a dish after dish dinner party...
...and I got to meet two of her lively and entertaining friends!

Cathy, Michi, Teddy
That's me in the holiday mirror. Happy Holidays!
HomeUSA California, it's a Nation State • Santa Barbara • Santa Barbara 2005-2012

© 2014 • WhereTheHeckIsMom.com