Exiting the sort of motorway-esk road there was a mini queue as the traffic looked to enter the smaller side road..Off went the Jeep after a mini flurry of conversation, the conclusion having been that hopefully with a ‘turn it off and on again’ approach, then off would also go the techtronic gears..
The queue dissolved a bit and i rushed the procedure for the ‘on again’ bit, forgetting the stop go simplicity of the vehicle’s controls and inadvertently stamping once more (with that now involving itself again left foot) upon the break..
Quite lucky that we were barely on the way to getting moving and the car behind was also still in semi stationary mode.
That was the thing though, it was clear that default behavioral reflexes were still loitering in the background every ready for their big moment to shine once more and test those seat belts and when conscious thought moved elsewhere they would seize the moment. We were however now back in big standard automatic mode, so that was good.
We kept moving, drifting through side streets in intended obedience to the instructions of the Sat-Nav.
We drove up to the front to check in, it was one of those motel style places. It struck me, having checked in and gotten our room key, the abundance of land.. All those rooms spread out like this with car parking, only two stories high, quite the space intensive way of housing the migratory massives ..
There were outdoor swimming pools at the motel, a slightly unexpected spot of luxury most welcome what with it being really rather warm out, after some unloading and settling in, of which i have no real recollection, we headed out to locate these pools. We came upon one, it was not so large, a large, algae free, deepish pond as much as a pool, not that it wasn’t an enticing and welcoming bit of water in the warm but it was surprisingly well frequented already. A whole troop of an extended family pod, probably multiple family pods – this was not a large pool, not a lot of space less in the vicinity for any further visitors, so we headed through an on, there was a second one around here, perhaps that one might be less well populated.
There wasn’t really the room to be swimming, more an exercise in wallowing with brief interspersions of movement, a paddle thorough its center. It was however deep allowing for jumping, bombing and other swimming alternatives that can pass the time.
I remembered a holiday in Turkey some years ago, a much larger pool was on offer at that hotel but really very well populated for much of the time, so rather than swim or bomb we’d come up with an alternative thing.. the backward departure, it had even semi-aught on around the place, with others (admittedly the few, in no way the many) taking to attempting it, not as easy as it sounds.
The idea is that instead of pulling yourself out of the pool head up and stomach to the wall you do it head down with your back to the pool side. You hoist your legs over the side and then attempt to get the rest of your person to follow, there is a knack to it, one which between Turkey and now seemed to have been forgotten, which was probably as well, so that all those failed attempts could fill up the time. Noses, they are such an enticement to water.
Late Afternoon – Early Evening:
Realising we were not quite in central down town Santa Barbara
we headed back to the reception to see what they might be able to tell us about distances and transportation options. They gave us a map, it had a cartoon like inspired quality and the helpful reception people drew on it to show both our location and the central part of the town.
There were apparently buses, the Inn being on what seemed quite the main road they ran along that in handy close proximity. Though having approached the first of the stops we then went on, i can only presume this was due to the timings of the next expected arrival or just some general confusion over what we were being told … again the details of all such matters are all quite lost on me, i do know we ended up walking and that it was not the briefest of trundles.
Santa Barbara was not like the USA, in that it was unlike any part of the USA we’d seen up until now; the buildings had a solid permanent look about them with warm & colourful shades,the pavements clean and with spirit level reliable flatness.. it had all the pleasantness, order and solidity hallmarks of a German town.
There was a man, he was shadow boxing a tree – clearly it had been up to no good, poor chap. It might be entertaining, these things are, they shouldn’t be but this chap was living inside that.
We wondered most of the length of the town stopping on route as Mitch was summoned toward one of the bar on route. Trying to work out where that was, all i can recollect was that it was full of TV screens with repetitious sporting activities being shown and waiting staff in a referees uniform of sorts.
Having done a spot of retropective research it was a place called Killer B’s – https://www.facebook.com/killerbbqandbar
We didn’t make it down to the sea front, the walk had taken longer than expected, hunger and a drive to find dinner saw us turn around before we got that far. Having turned around it was time to settle on a place for dinner, i know we had Thai because i have recollections that the first few bites were surprisingly spicy but which of the two restaurants .. well the memory is such a powerful finely honed thing.. almost weapons grade thinking powers contained in there – it was probably the Zen Yai Thai Restaurant if what passes for vague recollections and ‘Do No Evil’s’ (alrighty then) street maps are too be believed. It was quite alright this dinner – http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Restaurant_Review-g33045-d734727-Reviews-Zenyai_Thai_Cuisine-Santa_Barbara_California.html
It was Sunday night, there was not much in the way of night life. Mitch had received something in the way of information on places to go back at the earlier sports bar.
The bar was kind of the opposite to what i later encountered in Mayrhofen – a lot of style with the outdoor fire pits to sit around.. a good place to chill out if you were in a large group, sit around the fire, sup, chat and chill. What it didn’t have was any real sense of life or energy, it wall all cosmetic pleasantness .. maybe it all spun round later in the evening .. inspiration from an 80s bond villain’s lair and all this sedate pleasantness rotated into the ground while from below the lively times took their place.
To be fair if this was in London and i could come here with a large group to sit quietly in the early hours of an evening out then this would be a place of choice for such things.
We stayed for an hour or so before heading on, finding nothing much to head on to and instead went to find those buses to take us back home.
No idea what time it was by now – but what buses there were about were not the ones that went our way, the last bus our way it transpired had left some time ago. That walk down that had seemed to go on for far longer than expected now had a return leg, while i realised i really could have done with relieving myself of some of those internally swishing about liquids before attempting such a walk. It did not add to the comfort factor or the extent to which this lack of buses was a welcome turn of events.