PacNo redux, NorCal and the eventual return to the Southland... / by geoffrey nichols

so this will be mildly disjointed visually (and possibly here as well) but i'm attempting to catch everyone up to where i sit in Starbucks 5620 @ Highland & Franklin in the heart of Hollywood.

in the previous log i mentioned the vintage tractor holiday lights parade but see now that for some reason no pics made it into the post so that will be rectified.

and being in Calistoga, Angwin, St Helens & Glen Ellen was a very interesting nostalgia rush while simultaneously being odd as my only reason for KNOWING these enclaves is my mother who is NOT there anymore.

the drive from Calistoga to the Bay Area was stunning as usual (and made even better because i listened to Arsenal thump Basel in the Champions League while PSG tied)

visiting of my oldest friends and her family in the east bay suburbs was cool as pixie thoroughly relished watching animated features and playing "cozy cozy" with little boy.

unfortunately, certain logistics forbade me from spending as much time in San Francisco proper as i would've liked, but i did BART in on a rainy night to dine with family friends i've known since the 70s.

the drive down 101 to Santa Barbara was visually uneventful, but the idyllic seaside town was at the height of picturesque when parked along the beach and met 3.5 pugs in the first few minutes we walked along the boardwalk.  the waning rays of light were spent taking pics, creating images and keeping an eye out for coyotes at the hillside cabin of another dear friend. absolutely perfect mexican food capped off the night and then i woke on my birthday to a misty morning and only 2 hours away from the City of Angels.

Breakfast turned out to be quite memorable as 2 women in the Italian cafe stopped me because of my orange sweater and i sat with them so long discussing fashion, the trip and misc that we exchanged info (one of them texted me yesterday that she's trying to connect me with movie producer niece)

the drive "home" along PCH was lackadaisical to say the least with me pulling over in Ventura to treat myself to shirt at Goodwill for $5 (i found 2 rather cool ones), then i stopped at beach campground i'd driven past a THOUSAND times. I also felt compelled to have an AHI burger at Malibu seafood, but guess what... I'm over it. (cause for $13 the fries shouldn't SUCK)

Pixie and I then strolled along Abbott Kinney Blvd in Venice where she grew up and... she broke it (it's an internet meme) and amazingly i did NOT buy Japanese Converse. With my hollywood bestie not expecting us until Saturday, she arranged a darling spot for us to bunk in SanMo

saturday graced us with big Arsenal win and then i migrated to Hollywood Heights where i'll stay with dear friend (and the reason for Pixie) for a spell. Sunday, which marked 14 weeks since departure, was honored by NOT driving anywhere! Since then i've encountered epic donuts at AA in Silver Lake, some sherpa worthy dog walks in new neighborhood and the industry networking which is WHY i am here...

so per usual in Starbucksville it's absolutely FREEZING in here, PLUS i have pretty much caught you up so i'm gonna leave and add the pics at home later...