Town Column

West Tisbury

By Hermine Hull
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Posted June 7, 2007

The leafy bower I described in last week's column has disappeared into a fetid, dripping mess. Leslie Baker called it "an early Halloween," as the thick cobwebs and writhing worms seem to be unavoidable. They are even eating the cedar trees. The car is covered, the sides of the house are covered, all my formerly beautiful trees and shrubs; worms are even on the perennials. You have to brush your way through their detritus, then still find them inching their way along our clothes and our dogs and through our hair. It's totally gross. Trying to paint outside has been challenging. Leslie and I were lucky to go down to Glenn and Linda Hearn's last week and paint their views of Pond View Farm and the pond. Why aren't birds eating the worms? Why hasn't the heavy rain sluiced them into oblivion?

Having mentioned the appearance of Ellen Weiss, I am happy that summer friends are returning. Mary Beth Norton called me on Saturday, as did Brooks Robards. We are looking forward to getting together for a walk this week with Tallulah, a wonderful part of our summer routine.

Ken and Cathy Campbell are settling back in for the summer. I saw activity at the Bessire's this past weekend, and spoke with Ted Murphy on the phone. Ted and Ann will be here with their children on the first of July this year, earlier than their usual August vacation, and they will be here for my opening party on July 8.

Les and Terry Cutler spent a long Memorial Day weekend in Washington, D.C., visiting art museums, before continuing on to Reston, Virginia, where Les competed in the U.S. Master's Swimming National 1 Mile Open Water Championship Race. He finished second in the men's 60-64 year old group. Wow! Congratulations!

I ran into a very excited Debbie Phillips last Saturday. She was on her way to the boat, heading to Cambridge with her friend Ellen Wingard, where they were looking forward to attending a party in honor of Michelle Obama. Bennie Wiley, of Boston and Deep Bottom, were also there. Debbie reports that Michelle and Barack Obama plan to visit the Vineyard this August.

Jamie Alley is currently directing two plays by Charles Busch at The Footlight Club in Jamaica Plain. "Vampire Lesbians of Sodom" and "Sleeping Beauty or Coma" are performed Friday and Saturday nights at 8 pm. Jamie is serving on the Play Reading Committee, which he will chair next year, and the Director Selection Committee. This sounds like a great opportunity to see Jamie's directing skills if you are off-Island.

There will be a Watercolor Exhibition at the Howes House this weekend, featuring work by a group of artists who paint together weekly throughout the year. Nancy Cabot is the organizer and one of the artists. I hope Ann Howes will show some of the watercolors from her recent trip to Sicily. Sue Silva, Susan Boass, and Elza Membreno are among the other artists included. The show will be on view this Friday, June 8, from 1 to 4 pm, and Saturday and Sunday from 10 am to 3 pm.

Heather Glunt and Travis Thurber have opened their farm stand, Breezy Pines Farm, on Tiah's Cove Road, just across from the entrance to Sepiessa. They are open from 8 am to 7:30 pm. They have three kinds of salad greens for sale now, and will have a full complement of produce available by mid-summer. They are also getting accustomed to a lot more activity around their house with the arrival of a 13-week-old golden retriever puppy, Salty Sue, who has stolen both their hearts.

The Saturday craft project at the library will be making pipe cleaner animals. On June 11, the Monday Night Movie will be "Doctor Doolittle."

The rain has stopped, about half an inch, and much needed. Our peas and mixed lettuces are looking good, as is a healthy stand of arugula. The two white clematis, "Jersey Cream" and "Duchess of Edinburgh," I planted on either side of my studio door are blooming together as planned, as is a line of purple iris in front of a "Gibraltar" azalea, a combination I saw many years ago in a White Flower Farm catalogue and thought was beautiful. As with most gardening plans, one year the iris flowered too late and I lost a "Gibraltar" azalea over another winter, but this year the combination worked out. Driving down Oak Lane yesterday, I stopped to talk to Liz Branch, who was working in her yard, and complimented her on how mature and forever her garden looked. It wasn't all that long ago that we were planting all this stuff, little plants from friend's gardens or foot high rhododendrons that now tower over our heads. Time and life go on.