The wind howled. The sky was black. Waves crashed ashore. Power went out, then came back. We lost one tree and some limbs, but mostly twigs and leaves. It will take as long to clean up after Hurricane Irene as it took to prepare for it. Monday dawned picture-perfect.
I always love preparing for a storm. Hurricanes and blizzards were the times my pharmacist parents spent the day at home with us kids. We always lost power in inland Connecticut, so we would gather around the fireplace with books, games, blankets, and each other. Campbell's tomato soup and sandwiches. It always felt safe. I do what my mom did, stock up on canned soup and tuna fish, library books, and settle in. It's a little different now that I'm the adult, but I still feel the memories of those times.
We were pretty lucky compared to towns to our west. I saw trees down on Music Street and Middle Road. The fire department and EMTs were at Station 2 all day. Downed trees and wires were the worst of it, for which I am so grateful. Thank you all, and to your families, who gave you up for the day.
My condolences to Mary Lou Keep and her family. I was so sad to hear that Bruce Keep died last week. He had been such an active participant in town affairs, especially as Chairman of the Parks and Rec Committee, a position he filled with steadiness and vigor. Mostly I remember him as the cheerful smile and wave behind the steering wheel of "Vinely," driving around town, and as a very gracious gentleman whenever we met.
I apologize to Dan and Elaine Pace, who told me a couple of weeks ago of their impending trip to Seattle for the birth of their third grandchild. Rebecca and Chris Barclay, their 2½-year-old daughter, Cora, and the eager grandparents were awaiting the birth of a baby boy due the end of August. More news to follow.
Simone DeSorcy and Joannie Jenkinson are in San Francisco, having accompanied Anita Guerra and the four beagles back to California. Anita and Simone have planned a memorial service for Jane Newhall at the West Tisbury Church for Saturday, September 10, at 2 pm. They hope all who admired and loved Jane will join them for the service and a reception afterwards.
West Tisbury artists are exhibiting around the island. Ruth Kirchmeier's woodcuts are featured at the Shaw Cramer Gallery this week. Laura Roosevelt is showing her abstract photographs in "Rhythm and Blues," a group show at Louisa Gould's Gallery. Julia Mitchell, Richard Lee, Steve Lohman, and Jenifer Strachan will open their studios as part of Featherstone's Artists Studio Tour on September 10.
New York political comedian Scott Blakeman will be at the Grange Hall this weekend. He was an original member of the comedy show "Laughing Liberally: This Ain't No Tea Party." Performances are September 2 and 3 at 8 pm.
The Lyme Support Group will meet on Tuesday, September 6, at 6:30 pm, at the Howes House.
Next Thursday, September 8, there will be a special program at the West Tisbury Library. "Caring For Your Loved One after Death" will begin at 5 pm.
Ruth Kirchmeier told me a very funny story the other day, from her sister, Eva Allison. Eva is an inveterate thrift store shopper who lives in Branford, Connecticut. Recently, she was at the counter of a Goodwill Store, looking askance at a man holding a pair of sparkly red pumps standing beside her. They began a conversation, during which the man explained he was buying them for his sister who lived on Martha's Vineyard. "Where?" "Who?" "Oh, I know Hermine." My brother, Mike, also a thrift store addict,was the fellow at the counter. His purchase will be my Christmas present. I promised Mike I will forget this story by then and be thrilled and surprised to open his package. My brothers and I always wish we had ruby slippers like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, so we can click our heels and be together any time we want. I sure hope they work.