Town Column

Chilmark

By Jacqueline Sexton
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Posted March 15, 2007

Viewed from the Woods Hole parking lot, the Island Home looks like a tipsy wedding cake (big enough for a mass wedding), its top tier pitched at a rakish angle. Its bulk of course dwarfs its surroundings, from the terminal building to the cliffs; yet it's bumbling rather than arrogant and we may learn to love it.

Inside, the vehicles and the passengers seem scattered and smaller, lost in the vast spaces. On her first day on duty, with heavy northwest winds, she steamed steadily ahead, no swaying, no tipping. It was quite a performance. And the sizeable floor to ceiling panes of glass provided a clear and unobstructed view of the water. We were at one with the Sound, so to speak, no getting away from it. And the reflections repeated the shimmering on the ceilings inside. Docking in Vineyard Haven was a comic opera moment. Well, several moments of bump, shudder, try again. With more trial and error, she will no doubt glide smoothy into the slip, just like her predecessors.

Be sure to stop in at the library to see Dr. Robert Hockmuth's show of landscapes and some abstracts in the meeting room.

Back to smaller matters in town: Mark London, executive director of the Martha's Vineyard Commission, held a meeting last week with the selectmen about the MVC's "Island Plan."

The Sheiff's Meadow Foundation has notified abutters and neighbors of its intention to conduct burns at the foundation's Priscilla Hancock and Wades Cove properties sometime between now and May 1. A crew especially trained in firefighting techniques will conduct the burns. The exact date is dependent on weather and other conditions. Anyone wishing to be notified on the day of the burns may leave a telephone number or e-mail address at the office, (693-5207).

We are fortunate indeed to have such a dedicated team of volunteer firefighters. Last Tuesday, maybe the coldest day of the year, they turned out in force near midnight to put out a blaze in Nancy and Joel Aronie's shed/studio in the West Meadow. They deserve, as always, a full round of applause for keeping us safe.

Carol Merry's husband, Bob Merry, reports that Carol is making progress in her recovery from a car accident which left her with numerous broken bones. We wish her well and hope for her full recovery soon.

The month of March at the school means the MCAS testing for grades 3-5, and students and teachers are applying themselves accordingly. There are breaks though from the nose-to-the-grindstone periods with performances of fables and other shows by visiting groups like the Improv and the Spindrift Puppeteers, as well as an improv presentation of fables by grades two and three.

Addison Geiger's mother Dee Smith treated students to a homemade pizza which somehow combined pizza and math for a tasty study time for everyone.

Helen Diesen will represent the school in the up-coming Island-wide spelling bee, and runner-up Bradley Carroll will take Helen's place if she is unable for some reason to be present. Congratulations and good luck.