The Lemon Tree

Monday, August 17, 2009

It's Sunday night, just after midnight, and we're at the Lemon Tree Inn in Santa Barbara, having arrived about five hours ago after a relatively painless day moving. All in all, today went great, the best parts being that Lapis walked up to the house when we called him right before we left Ventura, Joedy's brother James and James's girlfriend Lisa adopted Sapporo, and we got the VW bus fixed and drove it back here. When we got to SB the sun was out and there was plenty of time left for drunken canonnballs in the heated saltwater pool, and some of our good friends met us here to relax and hang out.

I just spent 45 minutes driving around trying to find "healthy cheeseburgers" and another 45 minutes organizing the hotel room. I'm stuck in moving mode, straightening and neatening and whatnot, and it's overall a good thing, but when I started lining up the kleenexes in the basket by the sink in a nice neat row I knew it was time to stop. Joedy, Lula, and Malko are sleeping in the two queen-size beds and bassinet (it's a little snug for Joedy, but by not breathing too much he's making it work), and it's nice--very quiet. Actually, it's extremely quiet, so much so that I had to think about why for a second. I think it's because I'm used to hearing the freeway, which we could hear (it wasn't too loud, but it was always there) in Ventura.

It's strange to think of Ventura--our Ventura chapter--as being in the past, now. I have to say there's a big part of me that feels sad when I think about it like that, because we made some good friends there. Lula became very good friends with our neighbor Liam, his sister Camille, and their brother Eithan, and Joedy and I with their parents, Karinne and Dane, and not seeing Lula with at least one of the kids will be weird for a while. Tonight it was nice because not only were they all here, but a Santa Barbara friend of Lula's, Kai (and his dad, Tad) (who's super bad), were here, and another SB friend of hers from her old preschool (and her dad, Paul, who Joedy used to share a building with) was here. She got (almost--a few were missing) the best of both of her California worlds. When I asked her, in the car on the way to SB, if she was happy, she said yes, and I have to say I was really happy about that.

Driving into Santa Barbara was nice--there weren't many people on the road and the clouds thinned just over town, the fog hanging in grey and silver layers around the trees. It looked like an Oz country, it was so fairytale beautiful, and when we got into town the sun was all the way out and everything was drenched in late-afternoon green and golden light. When I walked out onto the patio of our Lemon Tree room and saw the bright turquoise pool I COULD NOT wait to jump in the water and yell "WOO-HOO!"

Which is what I did, and now, by crumb, I'm going to succumb to the delicious Lemon Tree night.

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