this is the santa barbara cemetery. i’m pretty sure it’s not on one of those top 10 things to do in santa barbara lists with the white calligraphy writing over the top of a stunning pic of the sb coastline or wharf. but it’s on my list now. and if you’re looking for a stunning sketch vista with plenty of interesting trees, and almost no people, put it on yours. stat.
plus you can have a peaceful stroll here with endless views of blue water and mountains. as a bonus there are some old grave markers that make for good reading.
here’s another location unlikely to make a top ten list for regular people. but we artists aren’t regular people are we? east beach by the volleyball courts. drive as far as you can past the nets and park. there’s a little trail you can take through the grass, follow it to the shore and head east. (santa babs coastline faces south) there’s a pretty beach here that is usually empty. you can walk over to butterfly beach at low tide. you’ll be below the santa babs cemetery high up on the bluffs and as you walk east you’ll also walk below the mysterious bellosguardo estate (more on that another time). walk back the way you came after you stroll butterfly beach or keep going if the tide’s still low all the way past hammond’s to miramar and fernald point if you want. someone might have to pick you up if you walk that far by the shore as some parts will be immpassable once the tide comes back in.
i use a tide app whenever i’m by the shore. comes in v. handy.
if you get lucky like sister and i did you’ll run into the santa babs mens running and exercise club SBMREC. super cute fellas who run to different points and do various exercises in the sand. leg lifts, squats, lunges, scissor kicks, crunches, pushups. terribly fabulous on so many levels. we made that name up ourselves.
you’ll probably see a few snowy egrets with either their golden slippers stretched elegantly behind them as they fly, or wading by the shore.
here’s a path to miramar beach where you can have a look-see at the new rosewood miramar resort and its blue & white striped umbrellas. we were going to wander into the resort to check it out, but decided it was too high falutin’ for us moss sisters so we went for a beach stroll instead.
see the tall green cactus behind the wall of this santa babs studio? it’s actually a euphorbia and i got a small piece that i’m going to try and root in a small pot. not from that specimen per se but one just like it at the place we stayed up the hill on chiquita.
if you love books and old libraries built 100 years ago or so you’ll want to visit the library & archives room at the santa barbara museum of natural history.
i had never stepped inside the dark cool interior with its outstanding book collection, red leather chairs, and huge wooden table. the librarian was very kind and seemed happy to have us stay for awhile to peruse book after book. she even turned on the little faux gas fireplace to make things more cozy for us. if you’re a bibliophile you’ll want to come.
no visit to montecito is complete without a visit to upstairs at pierre la fond. we stared spellbound by tilly treuren’s lush floral paintings. she has an IG account if you want to see more!
i may have picked up a few necessities i can’t remember. sister had her heart set on a silk neck scarf that was outrageously fabulous. when she saw the price tag her inner moss hillbilly came out of hiding and screeched out the price in a loud incredulous voice. i went to study something across the room and left her with the sales lady.
another must see spot that’s probably not on most of those search engine-optimized top 10 lists is seaside gardens in carpinteria, which is where i took a picture of this magnificent blue salvia in their cottage garden section. i simply cannot urge you strongly enough to GO HERE on your next visit to this part of the coast.
you can spend a long while here taking photos, notes, and sketches on ways to enhance your garden spaces. it’s a pure shot in the arm of garden inspiration.
this is a crap photo because i have it as zoomed in as possible, but i want you to see how very high the channel island range is from high up in the foothills of santa babs. if you’re at sea level on the beach for instance they don’t look like such a massive range, but up here, well, they’re looking pretty tall. this is santa cruz island. it’s the tallest channel island at 2430′ high, 6 miles wide, and 24 miles wide. it’s part of the channel islands national park.
about 25 years ago sister (carol) and i visited anacapa island. i’ll root around for those old-timey pics some time and show you. there’s a couple in particular i recall with us sitting on the deck of the boat with flowery cotton scarves tied under our chins to keep our hair from blowing all over the place like the little-old-ladies-in-training that we were and still are
it’s a warm sunday in los angeles and i’m out on the porch writing this in the middle of the afternoon. so far i haven’t turned the a/c on, but i just might.
except that now it’s night and i’m back on the porch getting the loose ends of this post tidied up so i can send it off to you. i’ll just leave you with this nice bunch of peonies and lace cap hydrangeas arranged by my friend sharron. we popped over for a ranch visit on the day we arrived 2 sundays ago.
and one very last thing.
how i loved finding this piece about blogging and writing and figuring things out.
which by the way, i found the original link for in my austin kleon newsletter.
i can hear the gentle roar of fireworks pinging off the hillsides up here in my porchside perch. soon there will be a bone rattling boom so i better get inside.
see you soon!