Town Column : Aquinnah
This past Tuesday was the late-winter, welcome-to-spring celebration sponsored by the Aquinnah Library (more on that next week), but spring seems so very far away. I am no longer fooled by March on this Island: it's just as bad as February and, to add insult to injury, it's three days longer. I don't get my hopes up for spring until about May, which seems really far away. To pass the time until then, thank goodness we have the Martha's Vineyard Film Festival, next weekend, March 12-14.
This year is the tenth anniversary of the festival, and it promises to be quite a weekend, great movies, comfy couches, and of course food by the Scottish Bakehouse and all the popcorn you could ask for. Plus filmmakers talking about their movies, friends to converse and argue with, what could be better? Many up-Islanders pitch in and offer their services, Elise at the Duck Inn, Elizabeth Pickett at The Pickett House and The Yard all put up visiting filmmakers. Cynthia Robinson, Spa, and a host of other people always volunteer. It really feels like our own wonderful movie club just for us, in the middle of winter.
This Saturday morning at 11 am at the Chilmark Community Center there will be a children's concert titled Circle of Songs with Hugh Hanley, admission is $5. You can call Julie at 508-693-5815 for more information.
And of course Oscar night is this Sunday, and you know how I feel about the Oscars (Love it!). I have no idea what else is happening that day, I just know I have to get my child to sleep by the time the Barbara Walters special is over so I can watch them in peace.
The day after the Oscars is not only International Women's Day but the first day of classes for ACE MV. You can see the schedule and register online at acemv.org. Janette Vanderhoop will be teaching again this semester, and her seminar on Wampanoag Myths vs. Legends is supposed to be fascinating.
This past Saturday the Tribe welcomed back ECHO (Education through Cultural and Historical Organization). Native people from Hawaii, Alaska, Mississippi, New Bedford, and Mashpee performed Celebrate-Song, Dance and Story. It was a wonderful performance. There was also a very well attended baby shower this weekend for Heidi Vanderhoop. Her friends and family are extremely excited and clearly cannot wait to meet this new member of our community.
James Shepherd and Faith Vanderhoop have been taking sushi making classes, developing new skills to enhance the seafood experience that is Faith's Seafood Shack.
I saw Paul Manning a couple of weeks ago and he and his wife, Theresa, and their son, Noah, recently moved into their very own, new house. Paul said it felt wonderful to be able be in their own space with their own washer and dryer, and their own furniture, even if they do still have a lot of boxes to unpack.
Of course last week was vacation week and the Island was practically deserted. Many people went to warm destinations as we discussed last week, but some went up north for some great skiing and snow boarding. The north got dumped with snow; one friend said it was the best snowboarding he's had, ever. Some of us did not go away, and we gathered at my house on Saturday to have our own little vacation celebration. Noni Smith, whose husband, Jed, is replacing Camille on the planning board, came with her kids, the Newmans came bearing homemade challah bread, and many other friends, some from as far away as Oak Bluffs and Chappy (it's not just Aquinnah that's quiet this time of year). We had a great time eating chili, talking about people who weren't there and watching the kids exhaust themselves playing soccer on the deck. I'm sorry if you were in the Bahamas and you missed it. Although one of the guests, on her way out, said, "Thanks for the good time, but next year - I'm outta here." Amen.