Festival Peeping

Cinco de Mayo

Sunday: the day of rest. Or, more accurately, the day reserved for all those crappy chores you can’t find the time for during the crazy workweek. You know, laundry, grocery shopping, yard work … yuck. Fortunately, this being Santa Barbara, anyone looking for a reason to procrastinate generally has an easy out — why not spend the day loitering at a festival instead?

Last Sunday, I had no shortage of chores to do or errands to run, yet still I pondered my options: hanging out outside, visiting with friendly, fellow loiterers; enjoying a little S.B.-style carnival food, music, shopping, and perhaps a cerveza or dos; or washing yet another load of whites? Tough call … but, I decided after mucho deliberation, the laundry could wait.

While Sunday was actually Siete de Mayo, there’s no way such a minor technicality could put a damper on Santa Barbara’s festival-happy ways, and so the Cinco de Mayo festival went thundering right ahead. Ditto for the weather — yeah, the marine layer was hanging around, but what’s a little mist when there’s fresh roasted corn on the cob to be had?

And so, a little after noon, I walked the couple of blocks downtown to festival central, a k a De la Guerra Plaza, with my camera in hand and my husband in tow. By the time we reached the plaza, the marine layer had been replaced with clear blue skies, and a decent-sized crowd was gathered, comfortably enjoying the festivities. We did a lap, stopping to admire the dancers, envy the bounce-housers, and do a little bit of shopping, and then settled in with some tacos (courtesy of Cesar’s on Milpas; and damn good, I might add). It was a decidedly family-friendly affair, and a decidedly Santa Barbara sort of fiesta — and by that I mean the cascarones were flying. (Am I the only one who wonders where the innards of all of those eggs wind up? The world’s largest omelette?) All in all, it was a lovely, mellow afternoon, but it was just the beginning of festival season, and I knew there were plenty more where this one came from, and so we made our way home.

After all, I had laundry to do.

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