It's finally been cold enough to wear a winter coat. There were even snow flurries as I drove to Katherine Long's Solstice party. Just right. Now the days will gradually lengthen, imperceptibly perhaps at first, till all at once it's no longer dark at 4, then 5, and spring doesn't seem so far away.
Santa has been busy and I have already had some wonderful gifts. The best has been the engagement of my cousin, Craig Rubens, to his college-and-since sweetheart, Stephanie Lawrence. I have adored Stephanie since we met. She has just come for a short visit filled with good food, lots of conversation, and an evening decorating our tree. I wish her and Craig all the happiness in the world.
Writing about Craig reminds me of how time has flown since I began writing this column. Craig and his younger sister, Elise, used to visit with their parents in the summer. The grownups slept inside, but Craig and Elise would sleep in the cabin of our boat on a trailer in the yard.
Chanukah begins this Wednesday. The Friday night Shabbat service at the Hebrew Center is one of the most beautiful of the year. Bring your menorah. The lights are dimmed and the service conducted in the light of everyone's menorahs, their candles flickering. There are potato latkes afterwards at a potluck.
The West Tisbury Church has planned a full schedule of services for the Christmas weekend. The Christmas pageant and service will take place at the Ag Hall on Saturday, Christmas Eve, at 5 pm. There will be caroling in the barn. Plan to come early to be sure to get a seat. At 10 pm, there will be a candlelight service held at the Church. The Christmas morning service, at 10 am, will highlight the beautiful music of the season.
Julia Humphries, Karen Ogden, and Susanna Sturgis spent last weekend off-Island attending a Rally Tournament with their dogs — Xochi, Nolan, and Travvy, respectively. Lots of fun and winning ribbons added to the growing resume of these lovely dogs.
If you want to see what Rally trials look like and see some familiar faces, take a look at When Pigs Fly Dog Training's web site: http://www.pigsflydogs.com/. Susanna and Travvy, and Katy Upson and her Scottie, Dundee, are in the video.
On a sad note, Betsy Corsiglia and Kevin Cusack have lost their newly adopted rescue dog, Waylon. He escaped from their yard last week, before he had time to learn his territory and before he had time to bond with his people. He has been seen around the Hidden Cove area in Edgartown/Oak Bluffs. Kevin has developed a Google Map to track his roaming and feeding patterns. Waylon is a very shy 10-month-old lab/springer mix. He is black with white markings. If you should see him, please call Betsy and Kevin at 508-693-5107, or Kevin's cell 508-509-1153. They ask that you not feed or interact with him. Having him home would be their best Christmas gift.
Paul Karasik and Marsha Wynsrig invite you to visit their collection of African crafts for sale. All profits go to disabled children and their families in Zambia. Please call them at 508-693-4059.
There will be a meeting at Windemere on Thursday, January 5, for anyone interested in pursuing a nursing career. Dr. Lorna Andrade will speak about prerequisites for Practical Nursing classes that will begin in August. She hopes to eventually bring classes to the Island. The meeting begins at 6 pm in the conference room on the first floor of Windemere.
The West Tisbury Library will be open for a shortened day, 10 am to 2 pm, on Dec. 24. The library is closed on Christmas Day, as are all town offices.
Next Friday, Dec. 30, come to the library to enjoy a concert by the JC Trio. The concert begins at 4 pm. The JC Trio will play a selection of music from the American Songbook. They are terrific and their concerts a gift for anyone who enjoys good jazz.
Happy Birthday wishes to Tye Stien, who turns 21 on Dec. 30.
I wish everyone a joyous holiday season.