The shapes of the hills of California are odd and impossible by the standards of the Northeast. In spite of my time spent there, my brain has still not adjusted to the angles—either in the distance or under my own feet when I’m there. On a charming horse farm that might be at home in the early twentieth century, the sunbaked scene is too real to be real.
The rooms are not the only thing nice about KITP/UCSB.
UC Santa Barbara seems like paradise compared to northern California, being basically directly on the beach. On this campus the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics stands out as especially great. Take, for example, this room just off KITP’s library, used as overflow office space for visiting graduate student associates. It has a fantastically high ceiling and overlooks the beach. Makes it hard to get work done!