West Tisbury


Glad for the rain, although I wish it had cooled things off a little. The weather is on everyone’s mind and skin. It seems relentless, these ninety-plus degree days, one after another. For those of us who hate summer weather, it gives me hope seeing that next week is August 1, The Fair begins soon, and cooler days are closer than they were in May.

Enid Haller has planned an awareness and fundraising day, Sunday, August 18, for her Lyme Center of Martha’s Vineyard. Called “Bite Back For A Cure” it features a morning bike ride to Chilmark, an afternoon talk by Katrina I. Makris, author of “Out of the Woods,” and a fundraiser dinner at The Grange Hall. She needs sponsors and volunteers. If interested, please look at the Lyme Center’s website, register to ride at Ride.BiteBackForACure.org, or call Enid at 508-693-1846.

Some happy birthday wishes this week. My husband, Mike, will have celebrated his birthday by the time everyone is reading this column. It was July 24. I hope it was wonderful and you felt “featured.” Claire Chalfoun celebrates on Friday, July 26. Her dearest friends have planned a beach picnic, what she requested, with her favorite food and wine and a swim. Saturday is Douglas Reid’s birthday. Beth didn’t say what she has planned, but I can’t imagine it will be anything less than perfect, as she does everything. Love and happiness to you all.

Monday, the 29th, is Porter’s birthday. Hard to believe he’s a year old, to think of him as a cat instead of a kitten. I am grateful to whoever raised him and handled him when he was first born. You did a great job. He’s confident, playful, loving, all anyone could wish for. Thank you. Thanks, too, to the Animal Shelter of Martha’s Vineyard. He was right there waiting for me.

Sue Hruby sent me an interesting email from her cousin, Tim Schwebach. Tim writes a column about Dell Rapids, South Dakota, a town about the size of West Tisbury, with many of the same growth issues. Being close to Sioux Falls, much of the development has taken place there, leaving Dell Rapids a place where his friends visit and “…are charmed by the hills and many trees, the nice parks along the Big Sioux River, and the cool stone buildings downtown. I suppose someday we will get our first stop light, but I can wait for that. We’re smart enough to negotiate a four-way-stop for at least a couple of more years.” Sound familiar?

The All Island Art Show is coming up and Eleanor Beth is calling for artists interested in participating. This year’s show will be Monday, August 5, at the Tabernacle in Oak Bluffs. It has been over four decades since the first show, long an Island summer tradition, a place for amateur and professional artists to show their work. Information and registration forms are online: www.mvcma.org.

Mary Beth Norton recently welcomed her close friend, Martha Farnsworth (Riche,) former director of the U.S. Census Bureau, for her annual visit to Great Plains Road. Although both had to work and it was rainy during much of the visit, they went to the W.T. Farmers’ Market, ate grilled scallops and striped bass at home, had pizza at Flatbread with Island friends, lunched at Menemsha and the Black Dog Tavern, went to Lambert’s Cove Beach as often as possible, spent an evening with Robert and Marjory Potts, and sailed on the catboat Vanity with Chris Fischer in the outer Edgartown Harbor.

One of my best childhood memories was of my mother’s uncles, my great-uncles, a quartet of gentlemen I remember as jolly, playful, and absolutely adoring of their niece and, by extension, me. They all lived in Bridgeport, an exotic city, from which they would arrive at our breakfast table in rural Ridgefield on occasional Sunday mornings, bringing bags of bagels and rye bread, lox, whitefish, pickled herring, cream cheese, tomatoes, along with jokes and stories, and pockets full of quarters for us kids. My Uncle Abe would even find quarters by magic from behind our ears.

All this came back to me on Sunday morning a little after 11 o’clock when Mike and I arrived at Mark Reisman’s house for brunch. It was a party of friends: Nancy Cramer and Dick Burt, Ruth Kirchmeier and Nelson Bryant, Leslie Baker and Dave Gorenberg, Liz Taft and Nancy Gilfoy, and Mark’s son, Jake. Mark had brought all the food from New York City, a dazzling array of nova and bagels and cream cheese, his special whitefish salad, the best cheesecake (from a Bronx competitor of Junior’s in Brooklyn), rugelach dipped in dark chocolate. Leslie brought a chocolate babka that had taken her two days to make. It was heaven. Great conversation that never lagged, good friends, a comfortable setting despite the rain. We all went home sated, carrying bags of leftovers, and swearing we would never need to eat again. We probably all weighed several extra pounds each.

I had leftover cheesecake for breakfast this morning.

Liz Taft will be speaking about her plein air landscape paintings at Shaw Cramer’s next artist’s talk on Tuesday, July 30, at 6 pm.

The 30th is the last Mother Goose on the Loose program at Community Services. MGOL is at the Oak Bluffs Library today, July 25, and at the Vineyard Haven Library next Thursday, August 1. Programs begin at 10:30 am.

The West Tisbury Library Foundation presents Jill Shaw Ruddock, author of “The Second Half of Your Life,” on Tuesday evening, July 30, 7:30 pm, at the MV Film Center. Hors d’oeuvres and light refreshments will be served. Admission is $25, $20 for Film Society members.

Don’t forget the Friends of the Library’s Annual Book Sale this weekend at the West Tisbury School. Hours are 9 am to 3 pm, Friday through Monday. The gym is filled with tables and stacks of books everywhere, organized by category. Art, history, poetry, mysteries, gardening, a huge children’s section. It’s all there waiting for you. Books are half-price on Sunday and free on Monday.

Bill Haynes just dropped by to show off his shiny new red truck. It’s a Tacoma, smaller and lower than the monster trucks he’s accustomed to. He looked happy and healthy in it, and that counts for everything.

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