Up and out of here for the day, down the mountain to Santa Barbara, California. The day was clear, sunny, and long sleeve shirt- warm. With the rain cleared, you could see Channel Islands today.
We went to Superior Court of California County of Santa Barbara. It is a site that everyone recommends visiting. We were able to park our big, long truck in a parking garage right across the street. (The website had suggested this place.) This building was rebuilt after the 1925 earthquake. We were like, “Ah, it isn’t that old.” Then later, I said, “Well, it is almost the same distance of time as when we were born compared to the end of the Civil War.” OH my gosh, we laughed…and felt very old! There is a breezeway in the middle of the building. We turned right and went inside. There is Spanish-looking style tiles up the walls, at least as tall as me. The app for this building is great – gives a lot of interesting information about the rooms plus, you can click on an “i” and get even more specific information.
Above one of chandlers, the ceiling is at least 3 stories high. There is a doorway with a small balcony – the only way to get there is through the door that goes outside! Way above the ground. HAHA The Mural Room is someplace to see. Paintings, tall ceilings, 100 year old draperies, court bench, etc. On the 3rd and 4th levels, you can see the working of the clock that is displayed on all four sides and then great views. Looking north, we see La Cumbre Peak with an elevation of 3,985 ft! Just a short ways south is the ocean. That tells you the dramatic rise of mountain here and it is beautiful.
We walked a few blocks to watch/listen to Tuba Bands play outdoors. The concert was outside on a closed part of State Street. There were more than 60 people in the band. Kevin said they were really good. (I am deaf, so I was only able to watch.) They played a verse and a chorus and then were done with that song. That was nice; got through a lot of Christmas songs. A guy from the city brought out more chairs and everyone in the audience was able to sit down. I thought that was very nice. Next, a school band played. After that it was a band of about 20 people. The concert went from 12:00-2:00 PM. By this time, we were hungry. We walked to Cali-Forno Pizzeria and shared a thin-crusted BBQ chicken pizza. Very tasty. Outside, we walked around and saw a street band of 9 people plus a Santa. They were very good. We don’t know their story but they were very professional looking, sounding, and instruments.
At the Paseo Nuevo shopping area, there was also a band, with 4 guys sitting outside a restaurant. Just fun and adds a lot to the festive feel. The outdoor markets were interesting – nothing really christmasy, as in, decorations or nativity sets. I wanted to get a unique one for my friend but didn’t find even one.
The next day we slept in a little and then went back to Santa Barbara. By this time, we had seen everything we wanted to see so we drove to Santa Barbara without a plan. We turned on some side roads and then Kevin saw a McDonalds. Yes, I am hungry, I answered, when he asked. We drove around to go to the drive through…and no drive through! There were park lanes for app ordering and parking to go inside. After we ordered inside, we sat in the truck (sunny and warm) to eat. I looked online about drive throughs in Santa Barbara and sure enough, about 40 years ago they tried to get rid, or stop them. The reason is because of space. I read ChickFila really went after the city about that. So, interesting…no signs above trees to tell you what is ahead, no advertising (nice!), and very few drive throughs. What a town! Driving around we soon ended up on the more east-side beach. We were able to park for free with no time limits, took our camp chairs and walked down some steps to the beach. What a glorious day!!! Beautiful beach, water, boats, fun to people/dog watch, excellent. We were there for over 3 hours! Didn’t even read books just sat and watched and relaxed.
At one point, Kevin notice the tide coming in. He found a stick about a foot long, walked to the edge of the water, and stuck it in so we could see how far up the beach the water was coming. Over the next while, we saw 3 different dogs put their mouths around it but then left it along. Later, a guy, a human, walked over, pulled it out, and threw it for his dog. That made Kevin and I laugh so hard, we had to hide our faces so he wouldn’t hear us. We saw paddle boards, sail boats, paraglider, divers, and helicopters. One time, a guy came back from walking, asked us if we had moved our chairs, we said no, he said, oh good, he knew this was the place he parked. HAHAHA We were the only people sitting on camp chairs on the beach. From there we went to Stearn’s Wharf for lunch, again, same place as last weekend. No waiting as it was mid afternoon. The view was clear and food delicious.
The night before we move, travel, to the next place we like to get everything packed up and put away for the drive. I say, “Kitchen is closed” and we get pizza for dinner. Leftovers is eaten the next day for lunch while in the truck. We laughed that our tradition “pizza-the-night-before-travel-day” wasn’t available since we are in the middle of nowhere. HAHA No pizza places anywhere close to Rancho Oso RV & Camping Resort, Santa Barbara, California!
Getting set up to leave today, we weren’t in a hurry because we only have less than a 2 hour drive and can’t check in before 1:00 PM. Drove out of Rancho Oso without meeting anyone coming up the 1 mile extremely narrow driveway. Whew, that was good. Driving down the side road I saw a shadow that looked like a tall box on the roof of the cab. We pulled over and I jumped out to see. It was the shadow of the mirror. HAHA Got down off the mountain just fine, on 101 South and then took Pacific Coast Hwy 1. We knew we were ahead of time and weren’t sure about where to go if we had to wait along the way, so we pulled off at Point Mugu. It has a hard dirt area and we easily pulled off there. Kevin lined up the truck and trailer so we could see the ocean. We went inside to use our bathroom and discovered a cupboard door, under the coffee counter, had opened, and then closed. Out came 12 cans of chicken broth -still in the cardboard thin holder, peanut butter, chili, pumpkin pie cans, etc. Sigh! Thankfully, there was no damage to the floor and no damage to the cans! As I gathered them up, Kevin set out our camp chairs to the side of the truck. What a great view of the ocean and beach!
Got to our next campground, Malibu Beach RV Park, and wow, the views did not disappoint. We have ocean view and, as Kevin said, “Well worth the money!” We got to our site and we saw what they meant by us backing down into this area. It took us probably gazillion back and forth but we got it exactly where it needed to be. In front of our site, on the other side of the black top is a curb with flowers, trees, extra, so you can’t drive over it to back in. It was our most time to get backed in but we just took our time and made it happen. After getting set up, Kevin set up the outdoor mat and our chairs. We look right off the edge of a cliff that overlooks Pacific Hwy 1, the beach, and the ocean. Just stunning. I set up my holiday yard signs with Santa at the beach. They are super cute. I placed them at our feet where we can see them as we look out over the ocean.
We pried ourselves away from our site and started walking to Malibu Seafood. I could see on the map there are trails from this campground down to it. Well, we got there and it is really steep. We turned around and walked back to the truck and drove there. Oh, you can’t turn left on Pacific Coast Hwy 1 out of this campground. So we turned right, made a U-turn at the light but our truck is so long, we had to back up in the road. Won’t do that again. HAHA Thankfully no one was behind us. Drove to the little cafe and the parking lot was completely full.
We looked on our iPhones and found The Sunset Restaurant. This being the weekend (Friday) of Christmas, at around 3:00 PM, I thought it would be packed. As we drove up, I didn’t care if there was a 2 hour wait, because this would be a great place to eat. Literally ON the beach! Kevin pulled up, asked a guy where to park for the restaurant, and he said it valet parking was right there. We’ll take it. HAHA Walked in and got seated right away. Wahoo. We were seated at the window overlooking the beach. It was right there. Perfect. The view, priceless. Saw the sun set to a perfect day. Thrilled to watch people watch the sunset.
As we left, we saw something that made us giggle. Not funny for the person, I am sure, but…. (sorry, not a clear picture)
Thank you for reading. We do so many things and we love sharing it with you. I write in my travel journal everyday. You would be so tired of reading if you read it all. HAHA We try to pick out the highlights for you.