day 3: the OCEAN

it’s so BRIGHT here. all the time! it’s pretty weird.

today after facing some ugly truths, jane and i hopped in the convertible and headed as far west as we could. after driving on narrow lanes once again (seriously – not sure what’s up with the narrow traffic lanes around here [but dang if these peeps don’t keep a great amount of following distance! love it]), we finally came around a bend and saw the pacific! that’s a big piece of water.

after hanging out on hwy 101 for a bit, we were able to get off onto the pacific coast highway (hwy 1). we immediately found a pull off and went to the beach to dip our toes in the chilly water and pick up some rocks and shells. jane didn’t roll her pants up high enough and got wet pants at least three times. 

then we took off northward on the PCH/101, landing in santa barbara, where we parked the car and took a stroll on the beach (where we saw a creepy, really tanned old dude in a speedo who should’ve taken a dip in the cold ocean), then walked out to stern’s wharf.

at that point, it suddenly got super hot. jane was using the ladies and i stood in the shade, where i sweated from just being. i also awkwardly chatted with a guy in steampunk gear who had his cat on a leash (the cat was cool). 

after saying goodbye to the cat, we had drinks and lunch at a restaurant (moby dick’s) out on the wharf, overlooking a harbor and the palm trees of santa barbara. i’d definitely recommend SB if you want to just hang out in a smaller town with a beach and typical tropical atmosphere. lots of palm trees, giant beach, constant sun. 

then we left and drove back down 101, hooking up with hwy 1 again via a weird, roundabout, interstate farmland area (seriously, weird farming stuff here). we drove through malibu and saw a ton of fancypants houses that we wouldn’t be able to pay taxes on, let alone buy. i think i saw ellen degeneres’ house! j/k i don’t know if i did, but i’m sure i saw the house of someone famous!

then we went to santa monica pier, where we had surprisingly easy and CHEAP access to parking (seriously, $6 for parking; i thought it was going to be $20). headed out on the pier and looked at a bunch of tacky stuff, picked up a couple souvenirs, then watched the sunset off the pier, along with every other person on the pier at the time. got some great pics, though! 

we got back to the hotel by backtracking a bit because the timing was pretty horrible due to rush hour. we drove through topanga canyon and were surprised at the end of it by a GREAT overlook of LA at night. after half an hour of windy, 20-mph driving, it was worth it. it’d be fun to see that during the day too. 

instead of taking the freeway to our hotel, we decided to drive ventura boulevard for 11 miles to our hotel. it was CONSTANT COMMERCE. just weird. saw a lot of porn shops (one with a giant, stuffed penis for sale in the window), psychics, sushi shops, then walgreens, target, pier one, then fancy restaurants, organic pet food stores, yoga studios, then a mcdonald’s, trader joe’s, michael’s craft store, then a store dedicated entirely lightbulbs, chandelier stores, etc. etc. and all the time, traffic was tight with the narrow lanes. i’m not sure how a person is supposed to turn left onto the road. 

we got through ventura, then jane made her only navigational mistake of the day. we were turning right into the hotel, and it was coming up, and i said, “it’s coming up. there it is. here it is. turn here. right here. there it is. there it goes.” 

then we had to drive around on some side streets, but jane made it. 

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