Town Column : West Tisbury
When I was in art school, I had a friend named Deirdre Whitlock. Her parents owned Whitlock's Book Barn in Branford, Conn., the most magical place for any bibliophile, and I spent many happy hours there over the years. The Whitlocks often invited me to stay for dinner. This time of year, dinner took place on their patio, under a pergola draped with wisteria. I heard Vivaldi's "Spring" there for the first time, all pleasant memories.
Years later, I saw an old cedar tree at Cynthia Riggs's, fragrant also in a lavender cloak of wisteria growing through it. I set about replicating it on my own property.
The wisteria vine came from John Gadowski about 20 years ago. I planted it by my studio, to hide the electric box in our driveway. Gradually, the vines began to climb an oak tree behind, heading skyward. It was looking quite lush and ready to bloom.
Walking up the driveway for the newspaper one morning, I saw my wisteria hacked to a puffet of leaves. What happened? Mike had cut it back. "It would kill the oak tree," he announced proudly. We are not divorced, and my wisteria is making its annual show. I hope yours is, too.
Bill and Janet Sarni are here from Hingham, guests of Glenn and Linda Hearn. The two couples met last September, when Glenn took Bill's decoy carving class on Nantucket. Glenn and Linda attended an exhibition of Bill's decoys last winter. This is the first time in 33 years that the Sarnis have returned to the Vineyard. The ladies were out and about; the gentlemen were home working and discussing the finer points of painting feathers.
Ken and Jean Francis enjoyed a weekend visit from their son, Bill, and his children, Jean, Andrew, and Ben, all from Rehoboth. Bill is recently home from his tour of service in Afghanistan. Everyone had big plans for the weekend, including hikes on the Land Bank trails, and visiting the children's great-grandmother, Anna Hagerty, in Windemere.
Beth Kramer and Douglas Reid have company for the next two weeks, Beth's mother, Joan Hopkins, and her husband, Jack. Beth plans to take Joan rowing (she and Nelia Decker row regularly in Vineyard Haven) and to a special "styling session" with Martine at Panache. Meanwhile, Douglas will be extra busy, as the Farmer's Market begins its season this Saturday, June 7. I have already placed an order for my first sticky bun (I have been waiting all winter), and look forward to all the treats the market has to offer. Plus, it's always the place to see everyone and to get lots of news for the column. See you there.
The Fiber Folks, who usually meet at the Ag Hall, will instead meet this Sunday, June 8, from 1 to 4 pm, at Island Alpaca Farm. Owner Barbara Ronchetti will host the meeting and provide refreshments. She has a lovely spot at Head of the Pond Road in Oak Bluffs, with barns, gardens, and, of course, alpaca, including new babies. New members are always welcome. It is an opportunity to meet other craftspeople and to work on your projects, maybe the long-unfinished one sitting in a basket in the closet. The Fiber Folks always have an interesting exhibit at the Fair, so you can see some of the things they do.
In preparation for the town hall renovation project, Jen Rand asked Leslie Baker and me to move the town's art and historic photograph collection to the library. We did so Saturday morning. My husband helped, as did Beth Kramer and Douglas Reid. Together we transported everything quickly across the street. Even with the best of plans, however, rehanging the work took a lot longer. The job is done and it looks great. The light is better at the library and I think everyone will enjoy seeing the collection displayed there. Beth, Leslie, and I are hoping to begin collecting old photographs of West Tisbury for the library. If anyone would consider copying their photographs, or allowing us to do it, please bring them to the library.
Mike and his crew will be traveling incognito for a few weeks until everyone begins to recognize his new truck and Murphy's summer haircut. We went off-Island last Tuesday to pick up our new silver Tacoma at Falmouth Toyota. While we were away, Murphy spent the day at Groomingdale's.
Earlier this winter, Mike noticed that the frame of his old Tacoma was badly deteriorated. He thought of welding it himself, then talked to Kenny and Jon Belain. The work would cost several thousand dollars and it was a ten-year-old truck, so we began thinking about buying a new one. A few days later, Kenny told Mike about a recall from Toyota; they would buy our old truck back because the frames on Tacoma's made between 1995 and 2000 were failing from a structural defect. Falmouth Toyota couldn't have been better. They examined the truck, bought it back for one-and-one-half the listed book value, and gave us $1,000 towards our new truck. It took awhile, but it all worked out. We have since told people we knew about the recall. I am writing about it now. If you own one of these trucks, call the dealer you bought it from to examine it for "perforations" in the frame.
Yesterday morning, I was watering my impatiens on the road and Tom Knight pulled up to say hi. He, Suellen, and Nereus have arrived for the summer. Talley and I are meeting them for our first walk of the season. Oh boy.