Town Columns


By Gail Craig - September 21, 2006

I hope everyone is out enjoying these beautiful September days!

I wandered off-Island last week for two days with Kelly Hess, traveling to Burlington for a couple of days of fun at the Burlington Mall and surrounding area. I haven't laughed as much as I did in those two days for months! For several days before leaving, Kelly had mentioned eating at Chick-fil-A. Knowing Kelly as I do, I was certain this was a joke. It wasn't. At lunchtime, Kelly headed straight to Chick-fil-A. She ordered her sandwich without mayo and the man behind the counter informed her that the mayo only comes on the side. Kelly was surprised, saying something like "oh, it came with it last time I was at Chick-fil-A." The clerk asked when that was and Kelly said "I don't know, maybe 20 years ago. I live on a rock". Shocked that it had been so long, and I think that she lives on a rock, he told her that her lunch was on him. Kelly loves a bargain so she quickly pointed to me and said "She's never been to a Chick-fil-A and she lives on a rock too," so he picked up my lunch as well. We offered to buy him lunch if he ever ventures down to our little Island. Naturally, we spent the rest of our trip trying to figure out how to get all of our meals for free, without success.

We saved yet another turtle this week, which I found while walking down my dirt road. It looked like one of those little ones you see in fish tanks, absolutely still and about the size of a half a dollar. I couldn't leave it where it was, certain it would meet its demise so I picked it up and brought it home. We put it in a plastic bowl and headed off to Felix Neck, which was closed so we headed to the MSPCA for advice. Jen Morgan said that I could either call Gus Ben David or just let it go near a pond. I opted to leave a message for Gus. So, here I was driving around with a little turtle, who was rapidly learning how to climb out of the plastic bowl, wondering what in the world I was going to do with it, when I remembered that my friend Jeffrey Enos knows much, about turtles and otherwise. So, we stopped at Jeff's, where we were met by the charming women in his life, Alison and Kathryn, followed by Jeffrey himself. As anticipated, Jeffrey knew that snapping turtles don't care for their young so our best option was to take it to a pond. As I had the kids with me, we made it a little science lesson/adventure, as the seven of us headed across the street and over the bridge to deposit the little guy by Sweetened Water Pond. Though I'm sure Jeffrey is an outstanding plumber, I can't help but think that he missed his calling. We learned a number of things about snapping turtles from him, Riley adopted him as one of his new favorites, Amelia bonded to Kathryn, who is 11 and ready to baby-sit, and I found Alison quite charming and understanding of this strange woman stopping at her house unannounced with two wild children, carrying a turtle, so it was definitely a serendipitous and fun-filled afternoon.

Local artist Nancy Furino called to say that some of her artwork is currently on display at the Chilmark Library and will remain there for the rest of the month. I have had the pleasure of seeing Nancy's work in the past, as my mother was quite envious of her talent, and encourage people to wander up and enjoy exhibit. It's a wonderful time of year to head up-Island, enjoy some solace at the library, and take in some art at the same time.

On Wednesday, Sept. 27, members of the MV Rod & Gun Club and their guests will be enjoying their monthly dinner meeting at their clubhouse. But a special event will be the raffle for a Ducks Unlimited Special Engraved Edition Browning A500 Semi-automatic 12 Gauge Shotgun, valued at $2,700. This gun had been won by Ed Tyra, a longtime member of the Club and staunch supporter of Ducks Unlimited for many years before his untimely death. He never had a chance to shoot this gun!

Ed loved to hunt and fish, but he was also known for buying lots of raffle tickets for most everything here on the Vineyard. So, now is your chance to buy and win. A limited number of raffle tickets are still available for $10 at Coop's or at Dick's Tackle only through Monday the 25th. Anyone can purchase them. You do not have to be present to win. Ed's daughter Pat says that her dad's secret to winning raffles was buying early and then again late and of course buying a lot of them. But naturally everyone who buys a ticket has a chance. The gun is worth it, to keep for yourself or to give as a gift.

Happy birthday wishes go out to Kathy Ivory, who will be celebrating her birthday on Sept. 27. If you know Kathy, be sure to mark your calendar so you can wish her a happy day next Wednesday!

Elizabeth Williamson, daughter of John and Anne Williamson, received an award last week for reading the most books in the Edgartown Public Library summer reading program. Elizabeth read an astounding 62 books this summer! For this amazing feat, she was awarded a $20 gift certificate from Edgartown Books, which she appreciated immensely.

I know some of you are wondering if I would have anything to say to Jenna Lambert this week, following her Letter to the Editor last week. I have had the pleasure of e-mailing with Jenna a few times I think she is an intelligent and articulate young woman. I am impressed that a 13-year-old girl spoke up about a perceived injustice and called me on my wording, which perhaps was too harsh. I still think the kids that night were rude but I could have phrased it better. I hope Jenna continues to write letters and stand up for what she thinks is right.

That's it for now. Have a great week.