This was supposed to be a holiday gift guide, not a story about my unexpected visit to the town of Ritzville, Washington.But when you see a dozen accidents on I-90 in an hour, the black ice starts to speak to you. Go forth and find a motel.
The wifi, mini fridges and Direct TV at the Top Hat joined the conversation.I have never been so happy to see a $48 room. Family owned, the people who run the Top Hat Motel in Ritzville are super-friendly. Although the walls are paper-thin, the rooms are clean, with a homey Holly Hobby thing going on with the decor.
Which became the perfect backdrop for this jolly Crabtree & Evelyn holiday gift set. Nothing is better to counteract extreme winter dryness than C&E ultra-moisturising (spelled with an S to honor the brand’s British roots) hand therapy. This box brings it to you in three scents — Caribbean Island Wild Flowers, Pear and Pink Magnolia and Evelyn Rose.Another last-minute stocking stuffer idea: more hand lotion, Apple Snow this time, tucked inside this Christmas cracker.With time on my hands and a delightful dinner of Spokane Trader Joe’s takeout the future reward, I decided a brisk walk was in order, despite the blizzard. The aptly named Ritz Theater was one of the first historic buildings I passed. A walking tour sign informed me its smooth stucco is a sample of 1930s modern style.But if you missed out on the Star Wars sleeping bag action this week, don’t go thinking you’ll be able to do it here, just because it’s opening a month later.With church bells peeling as I walked the deserted streets, it seemed like everyone was off praying for the blizzard to break. But further down the road, I found a Carnegie Library. And if you’re wondering, yes, that Carnegie.Inside was the loveliest library I’d seen since the one I used to frequent in Gates Mills. Except that one didn’t have birds of prey guarding every shelf.Back outside, a tumbleweed was headed for the Railroad Depot Museum. It was time to get back to the Top Hat…… where thin walls don’t matter if you’re the only one staying there. One more shopping day everybody! Are you ready?