It has been bittersweet these last couple of weeks watching the old school come down brick by brick. As a lover of all things literary, it will be exciting to see the new library rise from the debris, but I can’t help getting sentimental. It was such a rite of passage for so many of us, making the ascent from the lower grades into the brick building, then finally to junior high on the second floor.

I remember Mrs. Gazaille and Mrs. Honey, across the hall from each other, then Mrs. Yapp and Mrs. Hollister. There was the nurse’s office, where we were given pints of milk to soothe upset stomachs. Next, Ms. Graves protected her fleet of Apple IIEs (“Disk drive, monitor, keyboard” anyone?) — and I still have her to thank as I type this for teaching us touch-typing with a cloth covering our fingers.

Señ;ora Teson and Señ;orita Shay taught us to express ourselves multilingually — just ask Lucas Butynski — while next door, Mr. Blake, then Ms. Corr drilled arithmetic into our heads — sometimes literally with Mr. Blake, when he’d send a piece of chalk whizzing close by your dense skull.

Upstairs, Faber with his frogs, Dufour with her red felt pens, Wells with her pile of composition notebooks, and Bachellor with his horrifying tales of working in a pot pie factory molded our minds like plasticine clay, hoping something would stick.

I now have my souvenir brick from that old building, and it will hold a place of honor on my desk where I work each day, as it represents the foundation of my education, my rabid appetite for knowledge, and — let’s face it — my devout hatred of volleyball. As well, it will represent my gratitude to all those teachers who turned brick and mortar into a place of learning and growth. Hats off to those I’ve mentioned from my own experience, as well as those who have come before and after. Eagles for life!

Ahem, looks like I got something in my eye there….

In other news, Deborah MacInnis reports that the Edgartown Library’s pagoda tree is in bloom for the third time in its life. According to Ms. MacInnis, if it is not too windy, the bees will find the flowers and we will have seed pods in the fall. If it is too windy the scent of the flowers is too faint for the bees to find. The Library tree is an offshoot of the giant Pagoda by the Harborside. The only time it produced seeds previously, they were taken to Polly Hill to their fabulous arborist, who grew a tree for the new library. They are very fragile for the first few years and have to be indoors in winter, so Polly Hill was an obvious choice.

You see her sign work all over the Island, but did you know that Susan Sellers is a talented fine art painter as well? Susan’s en plein air oil paintings are currently on display at the Anchors until August 23, when a special lunch will be held in her honor. But fear not — if you miss the Anchors showing, Susan’s work is also on display at the MV Saving Bank branch in Post Office Square, through October. For more details, visit sellerssigns.com.

Birthday wishes go out this week to Erika Bettencourt and Adeline Smith, who celebrate August 27, and to Dave Vaughan, who celebrates August 29.

Last, I would like to give a shout-out to my husband, best friend, and general all-around favorite human, Dave Weagle, as we celebrate our ten-year wedding anniversary on August 23. Can’t believe it was a decade ago that we met in the middle of Green Hollow, surrounded by family and friends, and began our forever together. That day you were, and with each year continue to be, the best birthday present ever. Here’s to many more.

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