Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Bloody Marys and Bonding at Brophy's

I woke up at five a.m. today completely tired of the desert. I must be getting old because the same 103 heat that has never bothered me before, is suddenly becoming a cloying, irritating presence. I guess I wouldn't mind it if I could spend my days on the laptop outdoors in a swimsuit, jumping in the pool to cool off at my leisure, which was always possible before. But this year there is also an influx of flies and mosquitoes to our valley bowl that has created the incessant phenomena of polka dots all over my body from blood sucking bites. Scheduling all my meetings so that I don't have to leave the house but once a week, and when I do, making sure to ease into my fingers' first touch upon the steering wheel as to not completely sear off my fingerprints, and frequent afternoon naps to bypass the hours of four p.m. through 7 p.m. (which our local weather man has reported on Facebook today are our most torrid hours!) so that I can at least dose through my feelings of uselessness and re-garner some energy to finish my work in the evening....all of this creeping up on me at five a.m. as I gleefully packed for a business trip to Santa Barbara. For the first time ever, I couldn't wait to embrace the famous June beach city gloom.

After a long road trip that worked like a perfect sedative to my heat irritation, I met my friend Justine Hamilton at the famous Brophy Bros. Restaurant and Clam Bar in the Santa Barbara harbor. An overcast sky, the need to wear a sweater and a long skirt, the smell of ocean mist wafting off the waves, and a second floor seat on the wooden plank balcony directly overlooking the water, made everything suddenly better. Oh, and of course the addition of a spicy Bloody Mary.

Brophy's is known for its sustainable fish and the way they blacken their filets just right. My Chef's salad was served on a bed of lettuce: perfect bite sized chunks of cool salmon, crab, shrimp, julienned cheeses and pots of cocktail sauce and thousand island for dipping and a steaming basket of crevice-filled sourdough. Not only was the food fresh, healthy and simple...it was also priced right at ten to fifteen dollars for entrees filled generously with fruits of the ocean.

Content on the cocktails and tales of the boats docked nearby in the sea, we were picked up and escorted around the hills of Montecito by her husband to take in a little history of the paradise by the sea and all my desert angst vanished quickly away for the time being.

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