Saturday, December 3, 2011


This is my town, where wine is king with twenty-six tasting rooms on Main St. Murphys. As recently as 1969, ranchers were still running cattle down this same street,  kicking the manure off their feet and guzzling a cool one at the Murphys Hotel. When I first moved here rents were so cheap and business so slow,  two guys paid $25 a month and opened up The Office. They weren’t selling anything, they just invited people in to chat.

Now you can enjoy a champagne reception…

…or buy sophisticated, pricey goods without going all the way to San Francisco. Old timers, now gone,  would be agog at the changes. But the charm is in the mix.

You can just as readily stop by the Spice Tin and chat with Coach Shultz and enjoy a roasted chestnut, or…
sit around the coffee roaster, enjoy the wood fire,  and play checkers with your brew and sweet roll.

My friend Margo Osborn, (right) walked the streets with me for Murphys Annual Open House, always held the first Friday in December.   I like to run into old friends. We stopped to say hello to Cathy Courtright.

We started late and didn’t get to every business, but we did see seven places that had live music.

We stopped to see an Itsy Bitsy Art Show, where you can lounge around and study the pieces.

I liked this matched set of posters with  predominant colors, red and yellow.

As you move from place to place, if you get cold, you can warm your hands or feet at one of several fire rings. A new feature this year.

The breezeway at Newsom Harlow had their own fireplace and live music for folks enjoying a bite to eat with their wine.

Someone at Twisted Oak tasting room set out creative lights.
Local kids practiced their Christmas music. I heard bells, and carolers and music at every turn.

No where else will you see candles like these. The glass jar is hand decorated to hold a special candle. When it burns, you can buy a refill for your beautiful jar. A local invention.

Appealing  rag-dolls for two cute little girls. (And, I only have grand sons.)

The best eats on the street, apple dumplings and cider, chocolate or wine at Tanners.

Peace, the best Christmas gift we can have.

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