Town Column : West Tisbury
Another week of weather, the typical New England preoccupation. Warm, cold, solid ice one day, slick and melted the next, then mud as the water has nowhere to go. Any open water has been filled with waterfowl. Even our birdbath has attracted splashing occupants, as the birds take a dip on their way to breakfast. I have a pot of bright yellow narcissus on my coffee table, heralding things to come as spring approaches and the days are noticeably longer.
Leslie Baker just called, ebullient with "the smell of spring" as she sat in her yard feeling sun on her face. She had been out raking and doing garden chores, getting things done early, as is her way. It's a perfect way to take advantage of these mild days that seem like gifts before it freezes up again. Plus, I am hopeful that removing the leaves will let the ground dry up a little faster.
Helene Barr is a grandmother once again. Henry Lincoln Cooper Hall was born on February 2 at 7:17 pm to Elizabeth Erin Slossberg and Sam Hall of Roslindale. Although everyone speculated that he might share a February 5 birthday with his cousin, Eva Slossberg, Henry made his appearance on his own schedule. Helene was there for the delivery and glowing upon her return home with baby pictures. It's nice that he has his very own birthday. We wish him many happy celebrations.
Colleen Morris has planned a full schedule of events for the library's second Winter Family Fun Day, this year coinciding with Valentine's Day, February 14. There will be craft projects set up all day. At 11 am, Bella and the Arakataka Band will perform a bilingual puppet show of stories and songs called "Bananas in the Air." At 12 noon you can search for treats in a Valentine scavenger hunt. Tim Boland will arrive at 1 pm from the Polly Hill Arboretum to present a program about winter-blooming witch hazels. At 5 pm, singer/songwriter Nina Violet will be the star entertainer for a winter concert. There will be refreshments, everything is free, and all are welcome. Please call the library for additional information, 508-693-3366.
Last week, the library hosted the first meeting of a book group led by Susan Phelps. We will be reading and discussing "Encore" by Marc Freedman, about working and living the second half of our lives. The program is part of a life-long learning grant that Beth Kramer applied for and was awarded. Books are available at the library and anyone interested is welcome to join. The group meets the first and third Wednesday mornings of the month from 8 to 9 am. I didn't know what to expect and found the participants and conversation very stimulating. Consider attending this coming Wednesday, Feb. 18.
Dan Hanavan called to send happy birthday wishes to Michael Gately today, February 12. Susan and Bob Wasserman share a February 18 birthday. February 19 is Joshua Salop's special day; he will turn two. Happy birthday to you all.
The big news across Martha's Vineyard this week has been the imminent closing of our MSPCA. Everyone I know is shocked and incredulous. Our MSPCA is reportedly one of the most successful in the state. My personal experience, and that of so many people I know, bears that out. Mike and I have adopted several of our dogs through the years, including my darling Tallulah, and I believe Jen and Samantha could fill the most esoteric request imaginable. In fact, I expected the Edgartown MSPCA would be the source of the Obama girls' new puppy. The reason is supposed to be financial, but I can't believe a shelter with such a high success rate placing animals and caring for them could be expendable. What can we do? Any ideas? The closing is May 1, so hopefully animal-loving Vineyarders can come up with something to change the minds of the powers that be.
Closets, file cabinets, cellars and attics, sheds, and anywhere that stuff resides appears to be targeted by dauntless West Tisburyites as we work our way through winter. According to my Oxford English Dictionary, dauntless means "fearless and determined." There's something satisfying about throwing out excess or passing it along to a new home, simplifying life and space.
Sue Hruby was teasing my husband the other day, saying that closet doors would be a fabulous Valentine's gift for me, his beloved and patient wife. Not that 25 years is all that long. I'm sure they will be beautiful and well worth waiting for, as everything Mike builds is. But, even though we have dauntlessly cleaned out our closet, doors would be nice.