Hawaii. Florida. Bahamas. North Carolina. Colorado. Mexico. Saint John. Spain. Uganda. All these glorious places have drawn the attention of Chilmark families. Some of us are kicking back closer to home and feeling fairly content doing so. We will all have stories to share once everyone is back together next week. Some may have stories of African safaris, and swimming in tropical blue waters. Others will have stories of hiking the highest peak in town or skipping stones at Menemsha Beach. All different, all equally wonderful.

Bill Edison was kind enough to send me a postcard with another glorious Flanders Field softball poem. His correspondence is a vivid reminder that summer is just around the corner. He had a fabulous trip to Hawaii and is home in California anxiously awaiting spring when he will venture back east with his glove, pen, and pipe in tow.

Speaking of Hawaii, my dear friend and morning walking partner is back. Finally. I’ve had to pound the pavement on my own quite a bit lately, but there were a few days when I had friends who felt sorry for me tag a long. Welcome home, Julie Flanders. You look younger than when you departed so, I guess, fifty suits you.

Let’s all extend a warm welcome to Claire, Shannon, and Dave Nichols. Claire is the newest addition to the third grade at the Chilmark School. Shannon and Dave are dairy farmers who hail from upstate New York. Shannon brings her cheese making skills to the Grey Barn and in relatively short time we will all be able to enjoy he creations. Introduce yourselves. Let them know we have a warm and welcoming community.

Congratulations to Kieran Karabees. Kieran and Dash Christy really duked it out word for word at the Chilmark School spelling bee. It took 11 rounds to ultimately determine our representative at the all-Island bee on March 23 at the Performing Arts Center. His winning word was “broadcast.” Nicely done, boys.

Gabe Ambulos was one of the members of the winning under-12 boys soccer team that traveled last week to the Bridgewater Sports Complex. Casually known as The Dome, it was the home to the February Freeze Soccer Competition.

Magdalene Cullen called me a while back for a lovely chat during which she shared a big thank you to the Chilmark Police Department. The morning of Hurricane Irene, her phone rang. It was an unfamiliar voice on the other end belonging to Sargeant Jonathan Klaren. Her name had somehow found its way onto a list of elderly folks who may be riding out the storm alone. Now if you have ever chatted with Magdalene you would never think of her as elderly: she is full of life, full of words of wisdom, and she takes tremendous pride in her grandchildren. She is a pleasure to communicate with. Anyway, I digress. She was so pleased that someone had reached out from within the confines of our little community to see that she was all set and not in need of assistance. She urges others that might not have close family nearby or a dear neighbor that checks in to make sure someone like the local police know where they are. Reach out and say I am here.

Remember last week I asked who was game about checking out the Monster Jam in Providence? Kevin, Solon, and Barrett Oliver ventured off and checked out the big rigs in action. A grand time was had by all. And, congratulations to Barrett who now has a trophy on his shelf from the West Tisbury School Chess Club.