West Tisbury


I stopped by to visit Margaret Logue last Friday. After a tour of her garden, we got out of the sun to her comfortable living room to settle in for a chat. I was complaining about Nanuk digging things up as fast as I could plant them. Margaret went rushing off, saying as she ran, “Have I got just the right thing for you.” It was a catalogue from The Digging Dog Nursery in Albion, Calif.

It never occurred to me to look online or on Facebook; I called their telephone number and had a conversation with a very nice woman, Deborah Whigham, a former textile designer who owns the nursery with her husband, landscape architect Gary Ratway.

The original digging dog was a little white stray who appeared in a blizzard, serendipitously, when the couple stopped to put chains on their tires. He hopped right into the car. (They did check before bringing him home.) Having lived in the desert, the new pup was adept at digging for voles. Underground. In flowerpots. Tossing plants and dirt around. Surveying a complete mess, Deborah said, “Oh my god, we’ve got a digging dog nursery.” The name stuck, heading the first catalogue put out the following January. The name remains, a tribute to Kiva Coyote, the original digging dog. They do have a great website with gorgeous pictures of lots of unusual plants. Margaret sings their praises.

All this does make Nanuk’s exuberance pale, and Mike’s little fences appear to have solved the problem. In the original spots. For the moment, Nanuk seems happy with her hole under the boat.

This is a good lead-in to my annual harangue regarding dogs and heat stroke. Please DON’T leave your dog in a car with the windows up or just cracked. Cars heat up so quickly. And please DON’T take your dog to the beach for the day or leave the dog tied up outside. Imagine sitting in the sun wearing a fur coat on these hot days. No one means to kill their best friend, but it can happen. Please be mindful.

A nice surprise seeing Chris Greulich last Saturday. Her son, Evan, was going off to sketch, so Chris and I sat on a bench in the shade at the Field Gallery catching up. They had been here for a work week with Chris’s brother, Mark Miller, getting the Miller house ready for the summer. I commented on all the work to the old Nancy Luce house on their property. Renovation and repairs had been Mark’s project all winter. It looks great. When I saw them later, they had been joined by Chris’s daughter, Amy, here from Maine to surprise her mom and brother. They were.

Margaret Logue had a full house of teenagers I meant to mention before going off to digging dogs. James Logue has returned for his fourth summer working for Betsy Larsen and living with Grandma Margaret. His younger sister, Meg, came with friends for a few days of holiday before heading home to Connecticut.

Nicole Cabot is eagerly awaiting the arrival of her mom, Linda Vadasz. Linda is visiting relatives in New York City en route to West Tisbury from Budapest. The Cabots and I were at a piano recital at the Whaling Church, where Violet Cabot and Katie Morse performed two duets. Katie’s sister, Juliet, played a solo piece earlier in the program. Then, ice cream at Scoops.

Besides houseguests, work, and the garden, the list of concerts, lectures, art openings, performances, fundraisers, and summer classes in just about anything is sizable. Just this Sunday, July 1, here is a partial selection: Candidate for Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren will speak at the Whaling Church at 1:30. Copley Society Artists of Martha’s Vineyard opens at Featherstone from 4 to 6. Kara Taylor has an opening from 5 to 8. Hospice holds a “Jubilee for Art” on the Wesley House porch from 5 to 7. West Tisbury galleries are all open, maintaining our reputation as “the Athens of the Island,” as Polly Murphy called us.

At the library this evening, Thursday, June 28, at 5 pm, Laura Wainwright will read from “Home Bird,” her collection of essays just published by Vineyard Stories.

The J.C. Trio will be at the library Friday afternoon, June 29, at 4 pm.

The Martha’s Vineyard Library Association kicks off their Summer Reading Program this Saturday, June 30, 11 am, at the Ag Hall. Mr. G will entertain parents and kids.

Singer/guitarist Jessica Carroll will lead an hour-long sing-along of classic children’s songs at the library Tuesday morning, July 3, 10:30 am. Nelia says, “Wear red, white, and blue, and bring a shaker.”

Later in the week, come to the library to see an exhibition by artist-of-the-month Sue Mullin. Thursday, July 5, 5 pm, Ellen Weiss will read from and discuss her new book, “Robert R. Taylor and Tuskegee; An African-American Architect Designs For Booker T. Washington.”

Orange daylilies are in full bloom along roadsides and yards around town. We called them tiger lilies when I was a kid. To me, they herald the beginning of summer.