The sky is gray as I am writing this. I am hoping for rain, although the weather radar map shows most of the precipitation going just west of us. Still, a chance. Everything feels dusty dry. Mulch helps. As much as I wish for rain, I have to admit that most of our summer weather has been pretty nice. This week, though, the predictions are for hazy, hot, and humid as we end July and begin August.
I will be losing my husband now, as the Fire Department will start setting up the hamburger booth for the Ag Fair. Funny to think that the fair is only three weeks away. Those three weeks will be filled with activity, as everyone in town will either be busy at the fairgrounds or preparing exhibits at home. This burst of activity always seems to come so quickly, then be so quickly over. Then, so will the summer start to wind down and feel our own. I look forward to those days of late August and beautiful September, the change from busy-ness toward solitude, still warm sand and water, colors changing to goldenrod and asters.
For now, gardens are filled with produce and colorful flowers at their peak. The Farmers Market is almost overwhelming in its generous abundance. I look forward to the displays at the fair. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Speaking of abundance, the Friends of the West Tisbury Library have once again triumphed over chaos, turning the school gym into the orderly lines of tables of books we have come to expect. Art and Architecture, Biographies, Poetry, Island History, Crafts, Children’s Books, and so on, all clearly labeled and ready for eager readers to arrive, book bags in hand. The Book Sale begins Friday morning, and goes through Monday, August 3. Hours are 9 to 3 every day. Books are half-price on Sunday and free on Monday. Donations are always welcome. It is the big fundraiser that helps support so many of our library’s programs and extras. Thanks to the Friends for their dedication and efforts on the library’s behalf, and to all the patrons who will be lined up and ready come Friday through the weekend.
We will all miss Jennifer Tseng, who worked her last day at the library on Friday. Poet, now novelist, enthusiastic and knowledgeable planner of literary programs, she addressed her emails to us columnists as her “literary lovelies.” I always knew something interesting would be found there. Jennifer will be participating in this weekend’s Martha’s Vineyard Book Festival. She will speak about and read from her book, “Mayumi and the Sea of Happiness,” on Saturday at 11:15 in the Squibnocket tent on the Chilmark Community Center grounds. “Mayumi” is a finalist for the New England Book Award, and has been listed on Huffington Post’s “15 Beach Reads for the Summer.”
Another person who has left her familiar venue is Shari Foiles of our West Tisbury Post Office. She is leaving the Island, excited that she will be living and working near her sister in Maine.
If you are reading this in time, Writers Read begins at 6:30 Thursday evening at the West Tisbury library. Call ahead to reserve your allotted six minutes, or just come along. Both fiction and nonfiction writers are welcome.
There will be a reception at the library this Friday, July 31, for artists Marie-Louise Rouff and Julia Leonard. Meet them, learn about their work, look carefully, and enjoy the snacks and the crowd. The reception is from 3 to 5 pm.
Making Rockets with Matt Hayden is this Saturday’s family craft, set up in the Children’s Room from 10 am to noon. The Lego Club will meet later in the day, from 3 to 4:30.
Willa Vigneault will give a presentation about her recent trip to Jordan on Tuesday, August 4, at 5 pm in the Program Room.
Doors open at 7 pm on August 4 at the Grange Hall for “Tuesdays at Twilight Concert,” sponsored by the West Tisbury Library Foundation. Good Night Louise will perform a folky medley of Americana and blues, with appearances by Jemima James, Rose Guerin, and other special guests. The concert begins at 7:30. Tickets are $15 for adults and $7.50 for kids 12 and under, available in advance at the library or Tisberry Fro Yo. The Art Cliff food truck will be parked outside from 6 to 8 for dinner, and there will be yogurt treats after the concert.
Another musical library event takes place next Thursday, August 6, when the Friends sponsor a concert by Choro das 3 at the library. The performance begins at 7:30 and is free. Choro is “urban jazz native to Brazil that shares a similar feel with New Orleans jazz or ragtime or bluegrass.” Choro das 3 is an instrumental group made up of three sisters and their father. Eduardo plays pandeiro, a Brazilian tambourine. Corina plays flute and piccolo; Elisa plays mandolin, banjo, clarinet, and piano; Lia plays seven-string guitar. They look forward to introducing our families to their family’s music.
Leslie Baker is exhibiting 24 monotypes and oil paintings at the Marion Art Center. Her show, called “Now and Then,” combines her familiar Island landscapes with the abstract work she has been exploring for the past few years. She began experimenting with abstraction by doing monotypes in the printing studio at Featherstone, then using them as the inspiration for large oil paintings. The exhibition represents her past year’s work. It runs through August 14.
Alan Brigish and Susan Klein’s show of photography and stories from their book, “Now and Zen,” opens with a reception this Sunday, August 2, 4 to 6 pm, at Featherstone.
Good Shepherd Parish is having a yard sale this Saturday, August 1. They will set up their wares from 8 to 2 in the parking lot of St. Augustine’s Church in Vineyard Haven.
If you are interested in architecture and Island history, Edgartown’s Federated Church is hosting a house tour on Tuesday, August 11. Historian Mary Jane Carpenter will give a free lecture about the historical homes along North Water Street. The tour is from 2 to 4:30, and ends with tea overlooking Edgartown Harbor. Tickets are $40. For information: 508-627-7079.
Mike just came home for lunch and turned on the Weather Channel. The band of green showers that looked so sparse this morning is now a broadened, angry swath of dark green and yellow, indicating real rain that may fall over the Vineyard. As I have had the column to write this morning, I haven’t gone out to water yet. I think I’ll hold off and hope for a good, steady rain this afternoon. There is always plenty to do indoors, too, if I can’t be out in the garden.