West Tisbury

It’s dark and cold this morning. My kitten is asleep on my arm as I write. Nan and Talley are still upstairs with Mike. The woodstove has warmed the house and coffee is almost ready. I love being first up in the morning, the quiet time before the day starts. I love watching the sky lighten as, snuggled under my quilt on the sofa, I can read a book, think my own thoughts, plan my day.

It has been a sad time in town, as two grande dames of West Tisbury have passed away. Alma Benson died last week and Mabelle Medowski two weeks ago. Condolences to their families, their many friends and admirers.

Holiday preparations are at their peak as families await children returning from college and relatives from afar, or make plans to head off themselves. I love the idea of Thanksgiving and Hanukkah falling at the same time this year, something that last occurred in 1888 and likely won’t again during our lives. Both celebrate gratitude and blessings, something we should all try to remember.

Tim Boland and Laura Coit will spend a quiet holiday at home. Their daughter, Clare, will travel 12 hours on a Greyhound bus, then the boat to join her parents and brother, Conor. Clare is majoring in English at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.

Emma Gorenberg will be home from her last year of vet school at University of Pennsylvania to spend Thanksgiving with her parents, David Gorenberg and Leslie Baker, for the family’s customary dinner with cousins.

Beth Kramer, Douglas and MacCaull Reid, will be joining Beth’s mother, Joan Hotchkiss, for dinner.

Jesse and Alison Oliver will share Thanksgiving dinner with their children and Alison’s father, Ernest Barrett.

Margaret Logue is preparing for Logues, Mendenhalls, and Lowes to gather around her table. Bill, Chris, James, Kate, and Meg Logue come from Connecticut to join the rest of the family, who just come from Oak Lane.

Chris and Barbara Murphy are hosting Thanksgiving dinner for their clan. They can walk to their Thanksgiving dinner — everyone lives so close.

Dinner for the Cabot family will be at Dan and Nancy’s. This year the special guests are Nicole Cabot’s parent’s, Linda and Gaston Vadasz, who have finally moved to West Tisbury year-round from Budapest, Hungary.

Ted Murphy and Ann DuCharme are looking forward to having both their children, Teddy and Julia, home from college. Ann’s parents. Bob and Linda DuCharme, will be here, too.

Mark and Michiko Weiner are staying home with their two children, Aki and Kiyla. Joining them is Michiko’s cousin, Hiroko, who is currently teaching a cultural exchange program in Bloomington, Indiana. She will help with the children over the weekend while Mark and Michiko have their Glassworks open on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

Allen and Lynne Whiting have Lynne’s nephew, Louis Francoise, and his best friend from Salt Lake City, Marshall Wallace, with them for the weekend. Louis is studying at St. Anselm’s College in New Hampshire, Marshall at UVM in Burlington, Vermont. They will join the Whiting clan at Davis, Gina, and Isla Jane Solon’s, where there will be 24 for dinner.

This will be the last weekend to see Allen’s exhibition of large paintings at the A Gallery in Oak Bluffs. It remains on view through Saturday, November 30. Allen and Lynne will have the Davis House Gallery open this Friday and Saturday, 1 to 6 pm, and by appointment, 508-693-4691. There will be new paintings on display. They plan to open those same hours the weekend before Christmas, too. There will also be some of Allen’s paintings hanging through March at Midnight Farm.

The Martha’s Vineyard Chamber Music Society is having a Thanksgiving concert Saturday evening, November 30, 7:30 pm, at the Whaling Church in Edgartown. The program includes music by Mozart and Brahms, as well as two new compositions. Performing are violinists Stephanie Chase and Scott Woolweaver, cellist Scott Kluksdahl, and pianist Delores Stevens. The visiting musicians are staying right here in town at Ann Fielder’s B&B on New Lane.

A movie is being made in West Tisbury by Melanie Ramos and Miriam Ditchfield. They are looking for background actors of all ages for filming on December 13 and 14. If you are interested, please email Melanie at day90thefilm@gmail.com. The movie is about a heroin addict’s mandatory sobriety to gain visitation rights to her daughter. “Can 90 days of sobriety lead to a lifetime?”

Kaitlyn Maciel and Ryan Kurth were married on November 9 at a friend’s home on the North Shore. Officiating was Ryan’s best friend, Sam Griswold. (When Sam moved to the Island in 7th grade, Ryan became his first Island friend. They remain so to this day. In Massachusetts, regular folks can be designated “marry-ers for the day,” so that’s what they did.) Following the ceremony, Fred Fisher took them by wagon to the Ag Hall, where they partied and “danced the night away” with friends and family and their Bernese Mountain dog, Sven. He was included in all the festivities, danced, and “ate lots of filet mignon.” Kaitlyn is a first-grade teacher and Ryan runs his late father’s plumbing business, C. Kurth & Sons. Congratulations and all the best wishes for your life together.

The First Congregational Church of West Tisbury begins a series of three contemplative Advent services on December 4 and held on subsequent Wednesdays at 5:30 pm. Reverend Baker invites everyone: “Please join us as we embrace the darkness and move into the light of Christmas. These services will be simpler and shorter than our Sunday services, with extra time for silence, prayer, and ritual. They will offer a place for the complexity of emotions people feel during the holidays.” The December 4 service will focus on “Longing & Preparing.” On December 11, “Waiting & Hoping.” December 18 is “Healing & Transforming.”

I wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving and hope that everyone can enjoy the spirit of the day.