West Tisbury: Working on the boat


It’s a good thing my husband enjoys working on his boat. He spent the afternoon back and forth between the boat (on a trailer in our yard) and his workshop, replacing some wood on the cabin. Sanding, varnishing, and painting will be for next weekend. I say it’s a good thing because I can’t remember the last time the boat was actually in the water. Maybe three or four years ago? And then just once, in late September or early October, before it was time to do whatever he does to get it ready for winter and carefully cover it with a tarp. Our cat, Nelson, enjoys sleeping under the tarp. I think he gets more use out of the boat than Mike does.

It wasn’t always like this. When Mike first bought it, one fall maybe 25 or so years ago, he spent the winter fixing it up, finally painting the name, Out of Touch, along the sides. We took it out every Sunday that first summer. Our niece, Charlotte, came along with us sometimes, and I have happy memories of afternoons swimming in Tarpaulin Cove or Waquoit Bay, puttering around Cape Poge, eating sandwiches, and listening to the Red Sox on the radio.

The second summer I think it rained every Sunday. The next summer there was engine trouble that has seemed perpetual ever since. He and his dad went fishing together sometimes, but mostly Mike spends his time working on the boat, and that has become his summer pastime.

Meanwhile, summer is rushing by. We had a lovely respite from the hot weather, maybe two days and nights last week, when it was cool during the day, and we actually needed a blanket at night. Rain came, welcome for the gardens.

I had breakfast at the airport with Henry Bassett, and caught up with all his family news. Henry and his brother, Hugh, are here with their parents, Brian Bassett and Sarah Wasserman, staying with Sarah’s parents, Bob and Susan Wasserman. Henry and his family had spent some time traveling in England, Wales, and Italy after school got out. Now they are here helping with the Friends of the Library Book Sale that will open on July 28. Henry reports that there are more books than ever. Lots of art books and mysteries this year; it’s always interesting to see which categories have the most books from one year to another.

David and Carol Christiansen have a house full of grandchildren visiting. I saw Carol at a gathering last week, and she told me about all the things she has planned for their time together. One of her granddaughters is a member of the Vineyard Quilters Guild, so she will be working on a project while she is here, then will return to help out at the Ag Fair.

Note that the Fair sign is up at the corner of State Road and the Panhandle. Dates are August 17, 18, 19, and 20.

Everyone is raving about Rez Williams’ landscape paintings of Monhegan, Maine, a show that opened at A Gallery last weekend and runs through August 2. The opening at A Gallery this Saturday, July 22, is for Leslie Baker, whose abstract paintings are all about color relationships. It’s called “Into the Quiet,” and will be on view through August 7.

Nancy Shaw Cramer will host one of her showcases, featuring her beautifully designed and made clothing and jewelry this Saturday, July 22, from noon to 4 pm at her home, 38 Looks Pond Way. Nancy’s work is also at the MVCVA Gallery in Oak Bluffs.

Ruth Kirchmeier is exhibiting her woodcuts at the Sargent Gallery in Aquinnah. John Athearn is also showing there, with a selection of his watercolors.

At the library this week:

Mariah MacGregor will be teaching art classes for kids ages 9 and up beginning at 10 am this Thursday, July 20. At 5 pm, Constance Messmer will speak about “Chakras, Auras, and Energy Awareness.”

Saturday, July 22, 10 am, join Matt Hayden for a family program, “Building Rockets on the Porch.” At 3:30 pm, Dave Kish will show a documentary film of the 1958 Newport Jazz Festival, with a discussion to follow.

Monday, July 24, Kanta Lipsky’s Balance Workshop meets at 11:30 am, and Monday Night Movies begin at 6:30 pm.

“Islanders Read the Classics” with John Hough will meet to discuss “The Confessions of Nat Turner” by William Styron, on Tuesday, July 25, at 7 pm.

Yoga for Kids with Emily Histen meets Tuesday for 4- to 6-year-olds, and Wednesday for kids 7 and up. Both days at 5:30 pm.

Wednesday, July 26, at 5 pm, come to a Joe Keenan Concert.

Thursday, July 27, at 5 pm, Susan Suleiman will read from and discuss her new book, “The Nemirovsky Question: The Life, Death, and Legacy of a Jewish Writer in 20th Century France.”

The Friends of the West Tisbury Library Book Sale will begin Friday, July 28, at the West Tisbury School. Hours are 9 am to 3 pm Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. Books are half-price on Sunday and free on Monday, although donations are always welcome. Bring a bag or several to load up with your year’s reading. This is the Friends’ big fundraiser, so come and support our library.

Lots of West Tisbury residents attended Elizabeth Warren’s town hall meeting last Saturday. The Performing Arts Center was packed, with many folks left outside, although Senator Warren spoke with as many as she could before coming inside. She was wonderful (this writer’s opinion). She began by giving an overview of U.S. history about busts and booms cycling every 20 years, before FDR’s banking regulations were put in place in the 1930s, leading to a steady period of growth and investment for most Americans until the deregulation fervor of the 1980s and ’90s brought back boom/bust cycles once again. Then she answered questions from the audience. And I mean she listened to the questions and answered them. No “talking points.” No “Trump-bashing.” She was energetic, real, concerned, and very well informed. She was with her constituents, and spoke to our concerns. She spoke to the American values I grew up believing in. I felt very proud to be there.