|Up the Hill|
Part 1 if you missed it.
I burrowed into some bushes on the back side trail, and painted the grasses and some trees on the hill. There were many tempting views, but the least windy spot won.
|White-Crowned Sparrows sang to us; they look like they are wearing bicycle helmets|
While loading the car, I couldn't resist snapping more flowers in front of the house next to the preserve.
A friend had recommended that we try Robin's for lunch. What a nice surprise! Very eclectic, international and creative menu. We had the Salmon Bisque, a black bean and rice burrito, and a delicious bun-less hamburger for me. Oh and since we had worked so hard all morning, we shared a hot fudge sundae with McConnell's coffee ice cream. With a flower.
|small photo to downplay the size of that sundae|
On one of our stops, I ran down the side of the road to get a better shot of a field, and stepped in a hole and twisted my ankle. I was able to get back to the car, but that ended the active part of the day. We drove around a bit more, but then headed back to the hotel where I spent most of the rest of the day with an ice pack. We did get to Linn's for dinner, which is always a treat.
|Poppies deserving a sacrificed ankle?|
And of course, the elephant seals. One of the volunteers explained that they are fasting right now on the beach, waiting to finish molting. Then most of them go out to sea to feed — the largest males get up to 5000 pounds while feeding off Alaska. They will be back next winter for mating and birthing season. They estimate about 4800 pups were born this last winter just at the central California beaches.
A quick stop in Cayucos for more Smoked Pork Tacos (I only get these once or twice a year!), and then we went to Atascadero to visit Central Coast Trains. I went in the store for a few minutes, but then sat in the car with my foot up and enjoyed the clouds.
We drove down to the Santa Ynez Valley and made a quick stop at our favorite winery, Koehler. The Lady Banks roses were in full bloom. More overload.
Last stop of the day was to meet our "youngest" daughter for dinner in Santa Barbara. We always go to the Fishouse, mostly because of the location and they have a parking lot where we always find a spot (not so easy in Santa Barbara). The food is also pretty good. ;-) It was a great finale to the trip, and we did manage to miss most of the traffic driving back through Los Angeles.
(The ankle is still pretty swollen and sore, but improving. It will be ready for another painting trip in a week or so!)