Santa Barbara – June 2018

Long post – settle in with a cup of coffee or a cold beer  (or two) – a lot of ground to cover.

Anyone who has ever had the good fortune to visit or live in Santa Barbara, CA knows how beautiful and how much character this town has.  We are here in Santa Barbara for a wedding, but who doesn’t love an excuse to visit this town?

It is as important not to forget the devastation to lives and property that occurred earlier this year in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, and the Montecito area in particular, between the fires and mud slides that crushed peoples normal existence. Mother Nature can be a cruel mistress.

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We did the usual first thing of driving around town to get our bearings and just make sense of the town.  Being around lunchtime, my favorite cruise director identified a lunch place opportunity – La Super-Rica.  Oh, man alive – this is good!

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Now this place falls into the “dump” category – you would drive by it easily, and even if you saw it you would still probably drive by it out of conscious decision.  Big mistake.  This place is the bomb!

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Apparently, some years ago, Julia Child (chef extraordinaire) identified this place in Santa Barbara as one of her favorite eating-places.  Today, as was our experience, we waited in line about 20-30 minutes to get into the place. The ordering window is kind of like Seinfeld’s Soup Nazi, in that you wait patiently in line and then order food from the window before proceeding to the “dining area” (a canvas covered patio) and await your number to be called out.

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The orders are hand-written, the cash register is an oversized calculator, the seating is super casual, but the food is superb.  I ordered the Tamal De Pescado, which is a fish tamale filled with Dover Sole, potato, chile pasilla strips, and cheese – all topped with a cream sauce.  Oh my goodness.

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This is not a budget-buster place.  There are about 20-30 things on the menu, and prices generally range from about $2 – $5 each. And they serve beer.  Our lunch, with a couple of drinks and a couple of food items each cost us about $25.  There is a VERY good chance we will be back to this place before we depart Santa Barbara. Just sayin’.

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Apparently another Santa Barbara institution is Harry’s (Plaza Café).  While Karen got herself a pedicure, I went into Harry’s to get a taste of SB.  Whoa. This place is iconic, although to look at it from the outside it would not appear that way.  It is situated in the middle of a shopping center, but don’t be fooled.

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Celebrating its 50thbirthday, this mahogany bar with dark red leather banquettes, autographed photos,  and deep pour cocktails is a throwback in time.  In a place like this, what do you order but a martini!  Well, they mix martinis in a 16-ounce water glass and then decant into a proper martini glass.

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By the time Karen joined me after her pedicure, I was midway on my second.  She instantly realized that is was going to be her turn to drive us to a wedding-related dinner being hosted by friends.  Let me just say I don’t have perfect recollection of the dinner meal.

By the way, a huge shout-out to Uber and their drivers here in Santa Barbara!  We used Uber a lot – and it worked flawlessly!

Hosted by Joe and his wife Cathy, we really did enjoy a great meal at Carlitos Café Y Cantina, where we were able to meet a good number of the wedding party and attendees.  What a hoot!

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And golf.  We played the next day at Lenny’s Municipal Golf Course, Pawn Shop and Shooting Range.  Seriously, we played golf at a very nice course – Glen Annie Golf Club, where we all got to display our depth of skills and maturity.  Think Caddie Shack.  “Whoa, did somebody step on a duck?”

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Rightfully, we elders coached the younger crowd, giving them great life lessons that I am sure will resonate with them for years to come.  “The world needs ditch diggers, too!”  Sorry – no pictures on the course itself – to protect the guilty.

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We had a blast over dinner with good friends, and then the next day – the main event: the wedding of Shawn and Elizabeth!  What a beautiful ceremony, in a beautiful setting, and we wish them nothing but health, happiness, and eternal love.

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But this story is about Shawn and Bizzy!  The professional photographers will have the good pictures – these are the “not exactlies”.

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As you might guess, the reception at the Santa Barbara Club (does it get any better than that??) was a blast.

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Wedding crashers

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Debate Society captains

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Mr. and Ms. Gomez!

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Did I mention there was an awesome band playing and a LOT of dancing?

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Speechless

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Hopefully we have sent Shawn and Bizzy off on their new adventure, knowing they have nothing but love and support behind them.  Write great stories, Shawn and Bizzy!!  Love you both!

5 responses to “Santa Barbara – June 2018

  1. Brad, this is amazing!! We love all of these photos! What a beautiful piece written about our favorite place and people. Thanks to you and Karen for celebrating with us! We love you!

  2. You are my hero. When I grow up I want to be just like you. Traveling the country living the dream. Except for the Golf 🏌️‍♀️ abilities. Great pics and as always commentary.

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