I celebrated my 52nd birthday today under a big, blue sky in Santa Monica with my very dear friend, Lisë… who reminded me that the last time we were together on my birthday, I was 19. And it’s like we’re stuck in a timewarp. Haven’t aged an hour. Weird.
A day of firsts! including my very own henna tattoo, courtesy of Rozine at the Mindful Nest booth. I wanted to keep it simple on this initial foray into body art, so I chose a peace sign on my inner wrist. And why not? We’re both from the 60s. Photo on left is of the design with the henna paste still drying… Photo on right is next day, with all the henna flaked off and just the stained design on my wrist.
Henna tattoos are cool. You should get one.
And my first “personal” poetry slam… While Lisë was having her henna tattoo done (an intricate design of the Hebrew letters for her three kids’ names), I went back to the car to drop off some market finds (fruits & cheeses) and feed the meter. On my way back into the market, I bumped into Seamas (“Make sure you spell it with -as”) Navarro (“That’s with two Rs”), who introduced himself as a Beat poet. He asked me if I like poetry (yes) and did I want him to perform a 30-second poem (please) and he let me know that we was working his way from LA to Crestline, Colorado. It was a very soft sell. I told him I had $7 in my wallet and it was his – if I liked his poem, and could video him for my blog. Done deal. Et voilà:
Then Lisë steered me to my first raw food encounter at the extraordinary RAWVOLUTION…
RAWvolution – NO dairy in these yummy desserts!
I wish I had taken food porn pix of the dishes we ordered before we tore into them. The two of us shared the California Crunch rolls (think large maki rolls), pad thai and a ‘burger’. Remember, this is totally vegan and totally raw. No meat, no dairy, nothing with a face, and no cooking. I’m a total noob, and couldn’t even pretend to understand what I was eating or how it was made. Lisë was a good guide, as she is (a) a foodie / food writer, and (b) a fan of veggie/vegan/raw. And Rawvolution knocked her hemp socks off! (She didn’t really have on hemp socks. I don’t think…)
But can I just tell you? It was amazingly delicious! And so inventive. The raw version of bacon is coconut jerky. Yum. Coconut water and milk and meat are used in many dishes, many ways to provide sweetness and/or texture. Whatever was (or wasn’t) in the ‘burger’ patty was awesome. The pad thai dish was so creatively done. But I could eat a thousand of the California Crunch rolls and never tire of them. They’re big, and messy to eat and soooooo goood! As with many other cuisines, god lives in the sauces. And let me just wrap this up by saying the peach cake/pie which is made with (I think) frozen coconut-milk yogurt and a graham cracker (ish) crust and fresh peaches… Sell my soul, I’ve gone to heaven! On a 1-10 scale, it was a 437. I can’t wait to go back, with either a vegan friend or another uninitiated type like me. Rawvolution is such a nice surprise, all around. If you’re in a hurry, wait till you’re not. This is not fast food, and the whole vibe in the room says sit and savor.
These five or six blocks centered on Main Street and Ocean Park is Santa Monica’s version of Abbott Kinney (which is just next door in Venice). It’s funky and fab and edging toward upscale with bars and restaurants, an Urth Cafe and some great shops and galleries… but it’s fighting to ‘keep it real’ in all the right ways.
Here are some other snaps I shot along the way on this beautiful day.
adorns a CVS on Lincoln (or was it Main?)
and it somehow escapes being creepy.
I’m lying. It’s the king of creepy.
I have a hard time not photographing flowers and trees and skies.
Because it’s all just so ugly.
It was a good day to grow a tiny bit older. Thank you, Lisë!
Here are a few more recommendations I can happily make to you:
CoolHenna.com – Rozine does parties and weddings!
Garcia Organic Farm – You have got to find Leticia Garcia and her organic treasures at the Sunday farmers market in Ocean Park. They offer fruits you have never seen or tasted, all grown in North County (San Diego).
Mindful Nest – Contemporary Artisan Gallery on Main Street (mindfulnest.com)
Stansbury Collection – custom furniture store with extraordinary art on display… or is it an amazing art gallery with beautiful furniture?? Yes. They have a large framed grainy black-and-white photo of Malibu Pier from 1962 that I covet. And you can’t believe the images from Devil’s Churn on the Oregon coast, where the surf looks like heavy cream whipped to a frothy delight. I wish I could remember the name of the photographer… (stansburycollection.com)
Day 069 #100happydays