Friday, July 6, 2007

After a long silence......

For the 4th of July I was taken to lunch at a Japanese restaurant, very nice but imagine doing that 60 years ago???

Then I went home and watched the ever-patriotic STARSHIP TROOPERS again.
It reenforced my feeling that this is one of the BEST, if most disturbing and blackly humorous science fiction movies ever made.

And that Dutch/now international director, Paul Verhoeven, is one of the most fascinating filmmakers of our time. (But then all my favorite current directors are European).

I highly recommend his recent THE BLACK BOOK, one of the best movies of the year. Also his older epic, FLESH AND BLOOD, which I discovered via Netflix.

California is in the grip of one of the dryest summers on record. It hit nearly 130 (127) in Death Valley and many inland cities are in triple digit temperatures as well.

You've probably heard or read about the major wildfire up at Lake Tahoe, and there are some minor (so far) ones north of Santa Barbara.

Fortunately Ventura is on the coast and remains comfortably cool, even chilly at night. The fog, the "June gloom" which started in April this year, and the ocean breezes, help.

The Pacific around Ventura/Summerland (between here and Santa Barbara) is even comfortable enough to swim in, which I did on Monday. However, it was still pretty freezing at a beach we drove up to north of Santa Barbara yesterday. So I got sunburned, but not wet.

However, aside from the fact you can hardly ever get in the water comfortably the California beaches are still a heavenly environment, especially the more remote ones up the Central Coast where you can observe flocks of pelicans flying in Vs like eastern geese, and the occasional seal and dolphin in the surf.

At any rate, belated patriotic - yeah, right! - greetings from the West Coast.