Last weekend saw our return to the Catalina Wine Mixer. I am now hollibobbing in Germany trying to recount the festivities to write about them and quite frankly I may have mixed a bit too much and am struggling.
Importantly the wine mixer marked one year of the lovely Man being around so that alone is reason to celebrate. We did an anniversary ride of a golf cart around the island, this time I did not drive and no one drove the wrong way up a one way street toward a police officer. Although more on that type of thing once we get to Germany. And it wasn’t me this time!
The weekend kicked off to a great start when we found ourselves sharing our helicopter to the island with non other than the headline band, The Dan Band. I also just enjoyed getting to go by helicopter rather than on a ferry feeling sick!
Overall the wine mixer had a different vibe this year. It’s been taken over by new promoters and seemed to have moved away somewhat from the ‘Step Brothers’ theme although I can’t quite put my finger on why, since clearly there were still many references. In hindsight i think the change was more about the people attending it. This year there was a lot of college kids and very few geeks dressed up as characters.
Friday night was fairly low key and importantly so to save ourselves for Saturday. The main night was great fun hanging at Descanso Beach Club before waiting for the musical event of the weekend – The Dan Band. Due to them and Man basically being BFF’s we of course got to chat with them ahead of their set and again afterwards. Sadly for all the musicians that night, the entire sound set up for the event was really bad so you struggled to hear any of the people singing. Nonetheless the show has a large element of improvised audience interaction which, due to being keen fans we could hear as we’d nudged right to the front, and it was hilarious. Finally with good grace the wonderous promoters cut their headline band short, before they’d finished their set, and kicked everyone out. Back to my point of the new promoters not being so good. Anyway we went for a chat with the band, at which point I think we also became best friends, then we hit the town. See picture of the day with Man, Dan Finnerty and myself. For those not in the know, the Dan Band have played the wedding band in the following films – Old School, The Hangover, Wedding Crashers – and they’re all might nice chaps and very funny.
Saturday night then rocked on into town and I partook of a few Pina Colada’s which is my vacation drink of choice. The night seemed to shut down too early along with all the bars and no food was to be found. Yet Man was not yet ready to accept sleep so we walked around the island at 2.30am for an hour or so admiring buildings and probably getting ourselves put onto a police ‘suspicious activity’ report as a result. Any crimes that weekend and the weirdo Brit and Canadian walking the streets in the early hours zig zagging, chatting to cats and admiring the depth of the valley in the middle of the town would surely be on the suspects list.
Sunday we hit the water with a short kayaking trip around the edge of the island. We didn’t last too long as it aches ones arms and quite frankly in the shadow of the island was mighty cold. I did manage to see a few of the fabulous, local Garibaldi fish in all their orange glory before we closed the weekend out with dinner on the balcony over the ocean at the really nice restaurant at the front of the town which I can’t remember the name of so I’m off to google it, bear with. The Bluewater Grill that’s the bugger. Anyway, service was impeccable and it was a mighty fine fish and chips too!
All to soon it was time to fly home but again at least it was flying and not a green inducing ferry ride. We got back with a few days spare for Man to recover and for me to work before heading off for Germany and Sweden. In the next update I shall seek to share all the delights of this trip, which includes being stopped by Starsky and Hutches younger selves, beer, a chicken hat and many people.