It Never Rains in Southern California

Except for when it does.  Like this past weekend, for example.

We headed south Friday evening, and spent the weekend catching up with Tinos & Kim (aka Zoe), C’s brother, and M’s great aunt Jean.  ‘Twas a delightful long weekend full of museums and good eats.  (photos to be added sometime in the possibly near future)

First stop: Phillipe’s, home of the French dip.  It was breakfast time, so we missed out on the famous French dip.  No worries though, the biscuits were fantastico.

Next, The Getty Center. The weather was glorious on Saturday, making it a most delightful visit.  The space itself is stunning — the grounds just invite picnickers and frolicking children.  The special exhibit featured Rembrandt and his Pupils, where side-by-side comparisons of drawings showed the superior skills of the master, compared to those under his tutelage.

Another special exhibit demonstrated the lost-wax sculpting process in a step-by-step display complete with examples and videos of each part of the laborious, faith-inducing process.  Tremendous.

We had dinner with Tinos and Kim at Alegria in Long Beach that night — tapas and sangria.  Quite nice, but to be sure, the company was far better.  It had been about a year since we last saw Tinos and Kim, and it was so great to catch up.  After dinner, we caught a gallery show cum Centrevol show.  The night still being young, but the gallery winding down, we drove to Huntington Beach for a beverage and dessert before parting ways.

We stayed with C’s brother Kevin, in Irvine.  The next morning, we had a very tasty brunch at the Rooster Cafe in Costa Mesa.  They source 96.3% of their ingredients from local farmer’s markets!  (We did ask where the other 3.7% came from, but the staff on hand could not give us a definitive answer…)  Kevin had the strawberry banana pancakes, and we two had the Huevos Rancheros.  Mmm mmm.  Not to mention the Mexican Mocha.  Double mmm mmm.

And then the rain set in.  Fortunately, it was fairly light to start, which made the trip to the La Brea Tar Pits not as bad as it might’ve been if it had been a more serious downpour.  We started off in the Page Museum, where we got to see the fossils of the creatures, large and small, that met their ends in the tar pits.  Rad.  If you’re thinking of visiting, go ahead and skip the video, which must’ve been made circa 1977 and has not been updated since.  The rest of the museum — all the fossils, and the fishbowl looking into where the archeologists work — is fascinating.  Outside, you can visit and view the active tar pit research areas.  If you go on a non-rainy day (or if, say, you’d had umbrellas and/or raincoats), you could linger a while.

We watched Sherlock Holmes before it was eat-time again.  Kevin recommended Brodard Chateau in Garden Grove, so off we went.  The restaurant is smartly decorated, and the food was as tasty as it was attractive.

The rain continued all night and into the next morning.  We were able to have another brunch at the Rooster Cafe, this time with Mike’s great aunt Jean.  Aunt Jean gave it her seal of approval, declaring the Breakfast Tacos to be the best egg dish she’d ever had!  Hurrah!

Then began our long slog back homewards.  It rained steadily on both ends, and we passed many an overturned SUV along the way.  It’s not rocket science, people.  It’s wet.  Drive slower.  Even if you have an SUV.  I’m not automotive genius, but I’m pretty sure that four-wheel drive doesn’t make you invincible.

Anyways.  That was our weekend.  We liked it.  It was fun.  The end.

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~ by ... on 19 January 2010.

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