West Tisbury


The Great Pond has been frozen and unfrozen and frozen again. The Mill Pond, too, and Parsonage. Uncle Seth’s somehow remained open water through the past week. We awoke to snow one morning; then it was gone by midday. Warm rain and cold wind. Mud to ice. New England weather. Changeable.

Today the sky is bright blue, although the sun isn’t warming much. The water in the bird bath remains frozen. The sun is beginning to warm the brick floor in our south-facing sunroom, but hasn’t yet reached the living room sofa where I am writing this column, a quilt wrapped over me. A dog on my feet would be nice, but Talley has chosen to go outside, maybe to escape Nelson, who is on springs this morning. Now that I’m settled, he will probably jump up onto my lap, where he will stretch across the computer and make my column-in-progress disappear every time he rolls over. I continue to “SAVE.”

Ruth Kirchmeier just called with kitten advice. Her son, Eli, suggested blowing in the kitten’s face when he lunged to bite me. It worked with his three kittens and Eli asked Ruth to relay the information. I just tried it. Nelson looked shocked, but after a second lunging attempt, he has settled down. Maybe this will constrain his biting. I am convinced that somehow he has come to believe this is his morning playtime activity and lots of fun. I don’t think he means to hurt me. Meanwhile, blowing in his face is more straightforward than trying to find the squirt gun or can of rattling coins when he’s attached to my arm.

A reminder that Howard Wall’s memorial service begins this Saturday at 12 noon at the Ag Hall. There will be a potluck after the service. I am happy to report that, for now, Diane has kept Howard’s voice message on their answering machine, reminding us all to “keep smiling and have a great day” when we call “the house of Walls.” It does make me smile, remembering how cheerful Howard always was, and I loved the picture of him playing his bagpipes in last week’s paper with his obit. All the tributes have been wonderful. There will be plenty more on Saturday.

Wednesday night Community Suppers have begun at the First Congregational Church of West Tisbury. Though our Sunday 10 am worship service will be at the Ag Hall this winter until our sanctuary restoration is complete, ALL regular meetings and community suppers will continue to happen in our parish hall, grace a dieu. Make sure to use the Music Street entrance. Dinner is at 5:30, but you may come in from the cold starting at 5 pm for coffee and fellowship. Everyone is welcome. If you have questions or need transportation, please call our church office at 508-693-2842. If you would like to make a contribution of food or time, please contact Marjorie Peirce directly, mpontheroad@yahoo.com or 508-221-0314.

Monday, January 20, is Martin Luther King Day, so all town offices, schools, and the library will be closed.

Congratulations to Amy Hoff, who has been promoted to Assistant Librarian. Amy will be in charge of the young adult collection and programs.

The Tisbury Travel Club wants to remind everyone that all adults are welcome to sign up for their trips. Their next planned outing is for the 2014 Spring Garden & Flower Show in Providence. It will be on Thursday, February 20, and costs $38. Sandy Whitworth is organizing the trip, so call her at the Tisbury Council on Aging at 508-696-4205 or email swhitworth@tisburyma.gov.

The Martha’s Vineyard Museum Oral History Workshop with Linsey Lee, scheduled for this Saturday, has been changed to Saturday, February 15. Places are still available, so call Linsey at 508-627-4441, ext. 110, or email frontdesk@mvmuseum.org. Pecha Kucha Night will still take place at the Harbor View Hotel on Friday evening, January 17, at 7:30. The museum will be closed Monday for the Martin Luther King holiday. Do try to see the exhibit of Vineyard toys and games currently on view through January 25. Museum entrance is free for all Island residents on Saturdays throughout the winter.

It’s not too early to sign your children up for this summer’s Fern & Feather Day Camp at Felix Neck. They are accepting pre-registration for campers aged 4 to 14, and leaders in training aged 14 to 16. Call 508-627-4850 or look at their website: www.massaudubon.org/felixneck. Felix Neck does have winter programs, too. Friday evening, January 17, there is a Big Moon Owl Prowl. Coming in February, a Skull & Bones Workshop.

I can see the wind blowing through the rhododendron hedge and few remaining oak leaves in our woods. Time to send in this column, get dressed, and take Talley for her walk. Walking this time of year is such a gift of solitude and privacy. It feels like we are the only ones on an empty beach or on a moss-lined path through deserted woods. It is the best feeling in the world, one we pay dearly for come summer.