Home for more than just the holidays
Welcome home everybody.Even if you’ve never been here before, this valley has something about it that feels comfortable and familiar during the holidays. The lights are up, the eggnog is flowing, and every year is a white Christmas in our valley.For folks who make a point to come here often, our valley probably feels a lot like a second home. For those who have a second home here, well, we hope you feel as at home here as anywhere else in the world.I sometimes choose to think that before I was born I was given a choice of parents. I figure I looked down from above, saw Steve and Susan Boyd raising two other kids (and three dogs) in the wide-open hillsides of West Vail, turned to the big man and said, “Yeah, send me there those two look just right.”I try and make a point of thanking my parents for choosing to live in Vail it’s the birthday gift that keeps on giving.And like a good number of the lucky folks who grew up in this town, I’ve chosen to stay and make my life here.With the valley growing each year, I sometimes loose track of all my childhood friends who are still making contributions to the town’s commerce and community.So here’s a happy holidays to all of you grown-up Vail kids out there.Among them is our illustrious publisher, Bob Knox, his sister Carolyn, as well as our editor’s wife, Kristin Kenney Williams and her friend Shelly (Nottingham) Woodworth. Misha Moritz can be found on ice, in the evenings, playing hockey like he did for Merv Lapin back in the ol’ days. Jason Marner, Rusty Buick and John Donovan are also out on the rink, and Matt Hovey is assistant coach of the Battle Mountain hockey team. Chris Marner, Teddy Johnson and Beno Sheiddegger are among those starting second-generation families here, and I wonder if their kids will have their teeth cleaned by Dorothy Distelhorst or Ryan Zastrow.Patrick Welch, Nancy Buick, Heather Dorf-Rawlings and Michael Slevin are among those who we can call to talk real estate, and anyone who wants to talk cars can probably find Buddy Lazier for a conversation. Chad Fleischer can be tapped for a talk on skiing, and he can compare slope notes with Mike Brown. Cindy Brown Crawford still stays in touch with my sister, Cait Hilmer, and my brother Steve Boyd might run into old friends like Matt Donovan, Joe Hanlon, Meg Hanlon, Matthew Moser, Matt Dietz or Lance Carleson while he’s out Christmas shopping this year.It’s the people near my own age that I know best, but in case I don’t see the athletic posse of Jay Henry, Daniel Weiland, Brent Rimel, Danny Martinez, and Karl and Kevin Hochtl up on the ski hill happy holidays, boys.Patrick Benway and Josh Hemminger are probably out making a kicker in the woods somewhere, and later this year we’ll see Toby Dawson bring his World Cup freestyle experience home for competition.What are the chances that Michelle Fisher, Jared Kedrowski, Nichole Schmidt, Levi Klein, Jean and Mike Crowder, Reid Griebling and Nichole Shaner all see each other at J.R. Fuller’s restaurant? Who knows, but it’s much more likely that Tavius Simms, Nick Dooher, John Buckley and Derek Rose all see each other over prime rib at the Minturn Country Club, where T.J. Ricci and his sister Sonny help their parents keep things in order.Sonny is on ski patrol, but she’s only one of many who make their pay on the slopes. Clark Anderson is up on the hill, and skis with Peter Hart and Chris Robinson in his free time.Am I getting all this right? Perhaps I should ask Joey Peplinski, a teacher at Red Sandstone Elementary, to check my work, or maybe I should sit down with Sheika Gramshammer and try to figure out who I haven’t mentioned in this week’s column.There are many more of you all out there, more than I could possibly fit in this one column. So, to everyone who called Vail home at one time or another, happy holidays, and I hope to see you soon.Tom Boyd is a lifelong local and assistant editor at The Trail. If you can think of more returning lifers, send Tom an e-mail at email@example.com or call (970) 390-1585.