End-of-Summer Party Circuit Full of Laughs, Good Eats

Kristin White, left, and Mary Smather.

The smiles are broad on moms around the South County, as they sip their coffee and chat with friends about what they did for summer vacation while their school children moan and groan about the inevitable essay question.

Mine would have to brag about the more than 1,200 miles we traveled in the New England states last week and the “just like mia mama makes” North End Italian food at Trattoria Il Panino in Boston, as well as the Ghost Tour of the 17th and 18th century graveyards (not to mention the infamous Duck Tours).

The setting was very English, the tone was adventure, the characters a bit whiney at times, the mood mostly adventurous, the conflict settled by the oldest making the youngest cry, and in the end, the flight home uneventful. Summation: great vacation, glad to be back!

As if they were throwing welcome back parties, the neutral territory of San Martin played host to an endless party circuit last Saturday night. Well, “endless” maybe an exaggeration, but the two parties lasted well into the night.

Hosting their first “Party on the Green” were Rick and Rebecca Santos featuring a live band (J.J. Hawg), smoked tri-tip, chicken, hot dogs, more kegs than a fraternity party and ****Sweet Retreat ice cream all out on their expansive back lawn.

Families picnicked on blankets listening to the tunes, and I’m sure reminiscing about their “day on the green” days when the promoter was Graham instead of Santos. Dana and Mike Lombardi, former Morgan Hill residents now living in El Dorado Hills, brought their brood and festive mood to the gathering along with North Carolina residents Ed and Virginia.

Blessing the South County with their hope to start a new church were Scott Morris and his wife Tracie. Rebecca’s parent’s, retired Cal Poly professor Martin Lang and his wife Barbara, showed the youth how much fun retirement can be by joyfully dancing with the grandkids on the dance floor. Grammy Joanne enjoyed a dance with her eldest son, Rickie, as the sun set over El Toro. Perfect end of the summer celebration!

With the party mood set, we headed to another summer evening soiree at the hilltop home of Rich and Leslie Schmidt. A few of the Santos guests headed in the Schmidt direction and giggled at the thought of party hopping in the little burg. Movin’ on up!

The guests at the Schmidts’ were settled around the new infinity-edged pool enjoying the generous and thoughtfully stocked wine cellar of Rich Will-Not-Serve-Me–Bad-Wine Schmidt. The only self-prescribed cure for his oenophilic tendencies is a ’72 Bordeaux.

Relaxing poolside after her return from an Asian vacation, Ann Batinavich greeted the newly arrived party hoppers and an invitation to join the conversation and wait for the promised sighting of Mars. Oops, the calculations and the press were wrong. Oh well, Rich took the teasing well and offered more wine. OK, I’ll drink to that.

The quote of the night came from Mike Galucci’s wife when describing the genetic disorder men seem to have when trying to locate something in front of their noses. “I asked him, you know this one, the one without a uterus, where is the cheese that was just on the counter?”

The story ends with the mystery of the missing cheese having been borrowed by a neighbor with a uterus (and 12 children).

Ciao for now.