It looks like our microclimate has traded clear and cold weather for not so cold and wet, wet, wet. While the rain is greatly needed, it has caused some inconveniences.
A landslide on Westside Highway between Castle Rock and Longview interfered with back roads travel a few days before Thanksgiving. Fortunately, the closure was not as long as initially predicted.
Meanwhile, Ryderwood and nearby neighbors had a 10-hour power outage this past Saturday night. I do not have details, but it must have been an isolated incident since Vader was not affected and it is not on the Cowlitz PUD website. It was a very dark night.
Outages like this become Emergency Preparedness issues when you live "at the end of the road". The basic rule is to keep a 3-day supply of food, water and basic essentials available at all times. Ryderwood's Café has a generator and serves as the community's emergency shelter.
As for maintaining contact with the real world: The landline telephone system (those 295 numbers) has a battery back-up system that keeps the phones working for several hours. However, only phones that plug directly into the phone jack will work. Portable phones don't work because the base requires electricity. Cell phones that work in Ryderwood (Sprint, USCellular and Verizon) will work as long as they are charged.
It is definitely looking a lot like Christmas around Ryderwood. Every block has houses all bedecked with lights and ornaments, making the town look very cheerful and bright on the nights when the power isn't out.
For your special one-of-a-kind gift items for holiday giving, consider a visit to Ryderwood's "The Nest" gift shop. They will have a Holiday Open House on Monday the 14th, and will be open daily except Sunday between then and Christmas. Hours are from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The Ryderwood Women's Club will have its monthly meeting this Wednesday the 9th at noon in Pioneer Hall. The group will enjoy a salad luncheon followed by Christmas carols by the RWCS ladies. All ladies are invited.
Friday night's Dinner at the Café will be Pot Roast with all the trimmings. The meal is $9 and includes everything from beverage and salad to dessert. Reservations are required and can be made by calling Linda at 295-0875 by Wednesday. The system works because they only buy what they need which limits waste.
Open Mic returns to the Café on Saturday evening at 7 p.m. There have been quite a few visitors joining the regulars, providing great evenings of entertainment. All are invited to perform or be in the audience. This is the last month with Open Mic on a Saturday night. Starting in January, it will be held on the 2nd Monday evening of the month.
Monday has Karaoke at the Café at 6:30 p.m. Come early and enjoy the best burgers and soup around from 4-6 p.m. The choices include 1/3-pound beef, chicken or veggie burgers and mostly homemade soup. The Karaoke schedule will also change in January. Instead of every other Monday, it will be the 1st and 3rd Mondays. Stay tuned.
The Senior Lunch menu on Tuesday the 15th will be a holiday dinner of Baked Ham, Potatoes Romanoff, Green Bean Casserole, Berry Jello-O Salad and Dutch Apple Pie. That's quite a meal deal for a bargain price: $3 if over 60, $5 for others. The meal is served at noon in Community Hall's Dining Room. The hot meals are prepared in CAP's training kitchen and café in Kelso, "Grounds For Opportunity". Please call 295-3813 to make or break reservations by 3 p.m. on Monday.
Ryderwood's Tea-Hee Red Hat group will have a special Christmas Outing on Wednesday the 16th. The ladies will dress up in the red and purple and leave the Café at 11:30 a.m. for lunch and gift exchange at Gee Cee's. A jolly good time will be had by all, for sure.