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Exploring my Santa Barbara


Walk with me. I'd like to show you my Santa Barbara, California. We're about an hour north of Los Angeles, and we're at East Beach. The photo at the top of this post is Cabrillo looking east towards East Beach. I collected a lot of postcards like this when I lived there.

East Beach is where I spent a lot of time when I lived there in the '80s. It's right nearby Milpas street, and I lived in the Milpas area, which is a, ahem, less-than-fashionable part of town. I lived in a tiny apartment that that had been subdivided (illegally at that time) in a house. I had my own room, bathroom, and tiny kitchen, but it really wasn't much bigger than a broom closet so I spent as little time as possible in there. It was a place to sleep, and hang my hat, that's all.

Strangely enough, my neighborhood, which was the "low rent district", was very close to a very upscale neighborhood, called Montecito. It's hard to describe Montecito, except to say that it makes Beverly Hills look poor by comparison. So let's walk there, starting at East Beach.

We're going inland on Milpas. You cross the railroad tracks and then walk under the freeway. Hang a right at the first street (I don't remember the name) and walk a few blocks to Soledad, and turn right. There's a bridge there now, but when I lived there you simply walked down into the creek and across to Cacique. Now go left up the hill. At the top of the hill turn right towards the tennis courts. When you see the golf course on your left you're almost there.

You're on Coast Village Road now, where you can do some shopping, or get something to eat. I always loved getting ice cream there. When you get to Olive Mill Road go seaward (turn right) and follow that to the Biltmore.

At the Biltmore you can sit on the railing and look out over the ocean. Fancy cars go by, but I can't remember ever going into the building. I faced the ocean, and often ate my lunch there. When you're finished with your lunch, walk down the stairs to the beach. It's more secluded than East Beach, but hey this is California, don't expect to have it all to yourself.

I can hear the sound of the ocean.

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