West Tisbury


Hay, cut and tedded, combined with multiflora roses to create the headiest scent near fields around town last week. The heat was unbearable early in the week before thunder, lightning, and pelting rains washed away pollen and cooled the air. Gardeners were all grateful to be spared the lugging of hoses. I hope everyone got their hay in before the rain came.

If you haven’t driven though North Tisbury lately, make sure to look at the lupine and daisy meadow across from North Road. It is totally spectacular.

We were all shocked to hear that Danny Bryant died last week. A larger-than-life character, it seemed like he would always be around and in full vigor. My condolences to Evelyn, and to all his family and friends.

I took Talley for her first visit to Windemere today when I went to see my friend Millie Gault. She and Talley hit it off like gangbusters, with lots of tail-wagging and kisses from Talley, and lots of petting from Millie. I knew they would like each other. Everyone in the hallway liked Talley, too. Except for some trepidation regarding the elevator, Talley was calm and well-mannered, a credit to Gina Hayes’s long-ago puppy class.

On the way, I heard David McCullough interviewed on WCAI. He was speaking about his latest book, “The Greater Journey; Americans in Paris.” I can hardly wait to read about the 19th-century expatriates, especially the artists, many of my favorites like Whistler and Mary Cassatt. Mr. McCullough will be at the Ag Hall this summer, July 20, a program to benefit our Library Foundation. Listening to him talk about doing research for the book by reading letters and diaries made me wonder what future generations will find. Letters have been replaced by emails and Facebook postings. Today’s format will be irretrievable as the next technology becomes ascendant. A lot to be said for paper and pencil.

Lots of happy occasions to feature. Belated Happy Birthday greetings to Bill Haynes. His birthday is Flag Day, June 14, easy to remember. I’m sure Betty has planned something special and we who love you know that you relish an occasion. Enjoy every minute.

June 17 is my dear friend Leslie Baker’s birthday. I’m hoping for good weather so we can celebrate as we always do — going out painting together and having a birthday lunch. We have chosen our site already, Town Cove from Linda Hearn’s, looking across to Pond View Farm. Linda is making lunch. Expect my gallery to open late, if at all, on Friday.

June 17 is also a special double anniversary for Dan and Nancy Cabot. They will celebrate their fiftieth wedding anniversary with their son, Ben, and his wife, Nicole, who celebrate their 11th anniversary the same day. Many happy returns to both couples.

Saturday was the first Farmers’ Market of the season. I always love the opportunity to reconnect with everyone, gardeners and fellow-shoppers alike, as well as admiring the flowers and vegetables set out like still-lifes around the Grange. It’s always inspiring.

Welcome to Will Burmeister, newly-adopted son of Betsy. I wish you a long, happy, and healthy life together in your new Island home.

Learn about low-maintenance shrubs this Saturday morning, June 18, at Vineyard Gardens. The talk begins at 11 am.

West Tisbury artist Virginia Blakesley will be honored this weekend, June 17 and 18, with a retrospective of her work at a special Howes House Art Show. Come and admire the work of a long and respected career.

Martha Hubbell will have supplies laid out to make “clothespin creatures” of your imagination at the library all day Saturday. She made a beautiful pink and white butterfly. See what you can do. Monday, June 20, the weekly “In Stitches” knitting group will meet at 7 pm. Also at 7, healer Alison David Bird will speak about “Past Lives: The Evolution of the Soul Through Reincarnation,” and her work with regression hypnosis. On Tuesday, June 21, there will be an authors’ talk and book-signing by Matt Taylor and Susan Murphy. Their book “Jaws: Memories from Martha’s Vineyard” has just been published.

Jean Wexler was surprised when guests started arriving at her house last Sunday afternoon carrying cards, presents, platters of tea sandwiches and sweets. The occasion was Jean’s 90th birthday. The delicious high tea was arranged by Carolina, Dan, and Dashiell Cooney (Carolina is Jean’s granddaughter) and the guest of honor was delighted. Of course, young Dashiell and Rufus, the poodle, provided a good deal of the entertainment. What better way to celebrate your birthday than to be surrounded by people who love you. Happy birthday, Jean.

By some inadvertent mishap, my column was printed twice in last week’s Times. Once, correctly as the West Tisbury column, and mistakenly under the Tisbury heading. It was quite a surprise to begin reading and realize it was not Kay Mayhew’s charming prose with her signature “Heard on Main Street” closing. I can’t ever remember such a thing happening before. I hope she gets a double column this week.