Merry/Happy Christmas/Hannukah/Kwanza/Holidays or whatever to all of my many hundreds of thousands of readers and supporters. I hope you are coping with all of the razzamatazz, hype, and pressure that this event smothers so many of us with. Every year it seems to get more frantic. However, up here at The Nest we plan to have a relatively calm and very relaxing few days. In fact, as I have mentioned a number of times previously, to be perfectly honest, ultimately this whole celebration is really only for a couple of groups of people. The first of these groups I became aware of during a five-year stint in San Francisco as the sole straight fellow on a construction crew of five, the rest of whom became good friends before all dying with AIDS over a five year period. As a result I feel that I can state with a degree of authority that Christmas is primarily for the enjoyment of gay men. They certainly have the best Xmas parties. The other group is children, for all the obvious reasons, which I fully understand while not being a part of. Not that there is anything wrong with any of this of course. I just don’t belong to either group anymore?! Meanwhile, if you’re out Xmas shopping try to remember that I’m an XXL; otherwise fresh carrion is always good.
Holiday Restaurant Report, traveling northwest through the Valley along Highway 128. Lauren’s Restaurant is open for their regular lunch and dinner hours except on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. They are open on New Year’s Eve for one hell of a party! The Buckhorn is closed: no dry Martinis, draft Guinness, Manhattans, or Jameson’s available to anyone out and about on the town over the holidays. a very disappointing situation to many, I know. The Boonville Hotel is now closed on Mondays but remains open Thursday thru Sunday apart from, I assume, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Eve and Day. Call 895-2210 for details. Aquarelle Café and Wine Bar is closed until February. The Redwood Drive-In is also closed on Christmas Day but is open pretty much the rest of the time. FYI, I just enjoyed a very good breakfast burrito from there that proved to be a very effective hangover cure, I must say. After a break for Christmas, Stone and Embers will resume their usual hours of Friday thru Tuesday, serving from noon till 6pm over the New Year’s weekend, and on New Year's Day they will be having their first Ramen Pop-up dinner. Libby’s is no more. It has ceased to be. It's expired and gone to meet its maker. This is a late restaurant. Bereft of life, it rests in peace. It's rung down the curtain and joined the choir invisible. This is an ex-place to enjoy wonderful food. Yes, Libby’s is permanently closed. The Bewildered Pig is open through much of the holidays but their hours are still to be confirmed, based on whether they sell out seating on certain nights! I suggest you call 895-2088 if you are interested in going! They will then be closed from January 1 to 17 inclusive!
Talking of eating, drinking, and being merry (or hoping to find places to do so), the annual Valley Crab Feeds are scheduled for a couple of Saturdays in the first few weeks of the New Year. So some of you may wish to give Xmas gifts to loved ones in the form of tickets. The first one is the annual benefit for the Senior Center on Saturday, January 21, $35 pre-sale, $40 on the door — sold at the Senior Center, AV Market, Rossi Hardware, and Lemons’ in Philo. Happy Hour at 5.30pm, dinner at 6.30pm. Two weeks later is the Original Crab Feed on Saturday, February 4 — $45, same as last year, includes complimentary wine. Tickets available through Gloria Ross at 895-3071, John Schultz at 895-9552, or Lemons’ Market in Philo. Both Crab Feeds are very popular Valley-centric occasions. They WILL sell out; you have been warned. Public Service Announcements. #544. The Vets from the Mendocino Animal Hospital have no more visits this month. #545. This Friday, December 23, before you retreat for a weekend of Christmas festivities at home or wherever, there will be a Pre-Christmas Party at Lauren’s Restaurant! Dinner service as usual from 5-9pm and dancing and celebrating the time of year to the sounds of local deejae, JT, from 9pm until late. The bar will be open until midnight. #546. I believe that the Mendocino Bookmobile returns to the Valley next Tuesday, December 27. Phone 463-4694 for confirmation. They are usually here on alternate Tuesdays for 45 minutes at: Navarro Store 9am (for just 30 minutes before heading out to Comptche); the Floodgate 12.30pm; Philo 1.30pm; Boonville (Apple Hall) 2.30pm. #547. Need a burn permit? From 11am to 3pm on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays you can get one from the Firehouse in Boonville. Call 895-2020 for more information or stop by and you will be efficiently served with a smile. #548. The AV Museum is closed for the winter. #549. No more Barn Sales until the spring. #550. The Senior Center is closed from Friday, December 16, 2016 through Monday, January 2, 2017. They will re-open for lunch on Tuesday, January 3, 2017.The Three Dot is closed and the Old Buzzard is taking the holiday off.
I’m outta here. I’ve got see a man about a sheep. “Please take me drunk, I’m home.” Be careful out there; if you break a leg don’t come running to me; stay out of the ditches; be wary of strangers with more dogs than teeth; show love to your pets, they will be faithful and true to you to the last beat of their hearts; think good thoughts; Keep the Faith; try to not let life get in the way of living; may your god go with you, and may your dog go with you too. A final request, “Let us prey.” Sometimes poking, often stroking, but almost always humbly yours, Turkey Vulture. Contact me through the Letters Page or at firstname.lastname@example.org. PS. Keep on humming, Hummingbird. Missing the Venerable Pheasant. On the sheep, Grace.