Edgartown: Tempura for the Touchdown Club

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Happy busiest week of the year on M.V. For the first time ever, I’ll be missing the fair, which is weird for me. But on the bright side, I’ll be saving some money, and I don’t eat any fair food these days anyway, so it’s not so bad.

Happy birthday wishes go out this week to Jennifer Burnham Rose on August 14, and to Rebecca Norris on August 17.

Don’t forget to eat some tempura at the fair this year, and support the Touchdown Club! They took over the booth several years back as a fundraiser for the football team, so this is your chance to eat some yummy food and give something back to local sports.

The 157th annual M.V. Ag Fair is coming up this week, beginning on Thursday, August 16, and they are looking forward to welcoming the Island to West Tisbury. Their theme this year is “Old Traditions for a New Generation.” I don’t know if they are still looking for any folks who have volunteered in the past and would like to again be a part of the fair, but you could check. If you’re interested, contact Amy Coffee at 508-693-9549 or email fair@mvasmv.org. There is also sign-up information at the Ag Hall, and an online sign-up option as well, at signupgenius.com.

The Edgartown Firemen’s Association Open House and annual Pancake Breakfast is this Sunday, August 19, from 8 am until noon. Everyone is welcome. Go see some fire rescue demonstrations, tour the museum and fire trucks, eat lots of yummy food, and meet Sparky the Fire Dog.

I’ve been away for several days, so don’t really know what’s going on in the world of Edgartown at the moment, so I thought I’d share an interesting story that happened while I was dropping Riley off at the University of New Mexico last week.

Riley and I were waiting for our Uber ride one afternoon, and the driver who showed up was a slightly older gentleman, though probably not a lot older than I am. He was a friendly chap, and started chatting us up. He shared that he was a retired homicide detective in Albuquerque and sometimes teaches a few classes about it at UNM. This was, of course, of interest to both of us, as Riley’s dad, Jamie, is a police officer, Riley is considering majoring in criminal justice, and I minored in it in college myself. So we talked a lot about police work and Albuquerque and whatnot. At one point the man pulled out a business card and gave it to Riley because, as he said, “It’s hard moving to a new town. Don’t be afraid to look me up.” Glancing over at the card, I noticed in the corner it said Diamond Pediatric Cancer Society and I asked him what that was. For the rest of the ride he explained that he and his wife had lost their youngest son to brain cancer quite quickly a few years back, and he talked about the challenges that came with that painful time, particularly emotionally and financially. When his son passed away, he and his wife decided to create this nonprofit organization to help families going through what they went through. Among other things, they “sponsor” one such family each Christmas, to help them get through the holiday season a little more easily. By the time we finished talking about all this, we were turning into our hotel parking lot, and just before I got out of his car, I said “What was your son’s name?” My heart just about stopped when he said “Riley. Riley Rutledge.” I looked at Riley and he looked at me and I said to Ron, the driver, “That’s my son’s name.” He was as amazed as we were. Our boys would be the same age right now. It was an incredible experience that I took as a true sign that my boy was in the right place. And it also gave me a great perspective on where I was and what I was doing. While I was sad about dropping my boy at school, things could always be harder. Here’s the link to their website, should you be interested in this great cause: http://diamondsocieties.strikingly.com/.

Have a great week, and remember, people do not cross our paths by accident. It’s pretty powerful if you think about it.