Margaritas with a madman

Trip Start May 24, 2005
Trip End Aug 20, 2005

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Flag of United States  , California
Sunday, July 31, 2005

Margaritas with a madman I thought, it was Saturday evening and I was in Santa Barbara. So I decided to have an appertivo or two :-) .When I started chatting to this guy next to me. He seemed ok and when he said that he had lived with John Lennon in London, I thought this could be interesting. Then he said "You know he was murdered by the Queen/CIA, just like Archangel Diana (referring to Princess Di), before you knew he was off, with a lot of gibberish, King Fahad in league with the great Satan Bush, maybe not gibberish :-) to bring about the end of the world, he started quoting scripture, Dali Lama (so he claims), eastern philosophy and Tesla! So I thought time to stick some music on the Jukebox, so I asked him was there anything he liked to hear, he replied some Rolling Stones, so I put on "Sympathy For The Devil" and my own little tribute to him "The Verves - The drugs don't work no more", so he babbled away for a bit insisted that we place beer mats over our drinks as the "Spooks" might drug us, fat chance I thought. So after a couple of drinks and a round of water "as we need to purify ourselves", he went but not after until he used the limes from our drinks to clean his hands. He is the first truly paranoid person I have met and hopefully the last, the poor soul.
So one of the other notable people that I meet in California was a teacher in San Fran. She was a peace activist who had protested to close military bases, goes annually to demonstrate outside the "School of Americas" in El Salvador (I think but definitely some where in Central America)and has participated as a companion to coffee pickers in Guatemala. The companions being white who were there to protect the native workers from guerrilla attacks like a human shield. Indeed an admirable person. Anyway we had an interesting chat about, travel politics, yes Arnie is bad and like everywhere across the states, he seems bent on cutting funding to schools. I stayed in a lovely bed and breakfast in San Fran. In the alleyway next to me was a little anti-war (Iraq) shrine which had paintings, sculptures, poetry and flowers. It was unusual to find but lovely to discover there is still a bit liberal tradition left in San Fran.
So California was great, beautiful scenery and I even saw another whale. Now LA was fun, its great to wander down Hollywood, nothing like the one in Wicklow, do the tours particularly the haunted Hollywood one were they highlight the homes and spots of The Mendez brothers, John Belushi and where River Phoenix passed away. All gruesome stuff but will set you up for a night alone in a sleazy motel :-) The part of Hollywood I was in was primarily Latino with excellent and cheap Mexican food. One of the stranger shops was boutique called "Sometimes Women are the Mystery" It was a clothes shop that also doubled as an art gallery for the owner. She had a lot of photos of her and collections of objects in jars. The jars were a little bit creepy. They were filled with formaldehyde and contain, fish, lamprey (a large fish like parasite I think) Armadillo, a pigs foetus, lamb and snake. However the centre piece was the owner's Uretha. She had a note next to it explaining under Californian law she was only allowed to display her own Urethra and it was not for sale! Anyway I recognise the owner from her photos but decided not to talk to her as I was not quite ready yet for another strange encounter.
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JStone on

Santa Barbara is just a one of those towns that is filled with new and interesting people! You always tend to meet them when you are out having a good time and of course drinking! I've had my fair share of experiences with that for sure! I travel to Santa Barbara often and whenever I do I always stay at the Sandman Inn ( So inexpensive and the location is unbeatable, I love it!

Adele on

This is such a funny blog! I have totally had that happen to me but I was in New York City and not the lovely Santa Barbara! I could also see it happening in SB as well though! Those things always make a great story, even years down the line. I was just in town and had a great time! Stayed at the South Coast Inn ( So elegant and the perfect place to escape all the chaos of downtown!

Jasmine on

Santa Barbara would be the town where you encounter some interesting people. I have had so many interesting times in town that I can't even remember all of them. I can't wait for my next trip there, it's going to be a blast. Staying at the South Coast Inn (www.santa-barbara-hotel.coom). So classy and the best place to call home while on vacation.

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