West Tisbury: Traffic Jam


From the vantage of Alley’s porch, there was a lot of traffic in West Tisbury this weekend, more than any of us remember. Reports from people driving in it seemed to corroborate our observations. Traffic was reported down the Edgartown Road way past Vincent and Heather Maciel’s, down South Road past the Yoga Barn. Music Street on both sides was lined with parked cars, squeezing barely moving cars into the narrowed roadway waiting to enter State Road. All the events in town appeared to have been popular and well-attended: the Antique Show, Farmers Market, the Art Show at Howes House, programs at the library, the Blueberry Festival, the Artisans Festival, an opening at the Field Gallery, and a couple of weddings. Plus regular traffic to the gas station, Alley’s, 7A, Cronig’s, the post office, Conroy’s, people just wanting to go for a ride up-Island. It was one busy weekend.

Someone told me it was only seven weeks to Labor Day. I should say that there are wonderful things about the summer, and many of us who live here are happy to see summer friends. It just comes on so quickly and all at once, and for a relatively short time. So many activities and socializing with friends, and all the preparation and planning. Then it’s over, as quickly and precipitately. It’s just a lot of change to cope with. Plus it’s hot. It’s not all bad, but it can be hard.

Mary Beth Norton has welcomed Dr. Gillian Sutherland for her first visit to the Vineyard. Dr. Sutherland is a retired historian from Newnham College, University of Cambridge. They met when Mary Beth taught at Cambridge and was affiliated with Newnham College in 2005-06.

Paul Levine and Marie-Louise Rouff have Marie-Louise’s son, Professor Emanuel Pastreich, visiting with them for the week. Marie-Louise was just heading off to pick him up at the ferry when we spoke this morning. Emanuel is a professor of Japanese and Korean Literature at Kyung Hee University in Seoul, South Korea. He spent part of last week attending a conference in Vancouver, B.C.

Caryn Broitman and Brian Walt have had Brian’s brother and sister-in-law, Harold and Brenda Walt, visiting from Los Angeles for the weekend. They attended the Friday night Shabbat service at the beach, spent Shabbat together, and walked to Sepiessa with Shlomi, Rabbi Broitman’s poodle. On Sunday, Brian and Galya took them to Chappy for a tour of Mytoi and Wasque.

Owen Potts is here for the whole summer, staying with his grandmother, Marjory Potts. Owen is a high school freshman and handyman extraordinaire. His skills include bicycle repair (many of us remember Owen’s grandfather, Robert, who was also pretty handy and an avid bike rider) and he is offering “electronic-free childcare” for kids ages 3 to 10. He will read stories, play cards and board games, soccer, whiffle ball, hide-and-go-seek, and more. All at reasonable rates. Call Owen at 508-693-3584.

Bruce Haynes celebrated his birthday on July 19 with a small family party at home. Wishing you many happy returns, Bruce.

I am celebrating the good news that Fia Fleishman has found a home. Robert Herman and Madeline Way will be caring for Fia while Giulia Fleishman attends school in Israel. I’m sure Julian and Rose will help with dogwalking, and that all of you will love having Fia in your home and lives.

On a sad note, Leslie Stark died last week. There was a memorial service at the Martha’s Vineyard Hebrew Center on Sunday afternoon. In his honor, the West Tisbury library moved their planned program of 12th and 13th century music and poetry to a later time, so that participants and the audience could attend the service. My condolences to Myra and to all the theater community, of which Leslie was a dynamic and respected member.

Polly Hill Arboretum has hired a new plant propagator, a position that has remained unfilled for too long. Brian McGowan and his wife need year-round housing. If you know of anything, please contact Karin Stanley at the arboretum at 508-693-9426 or email to karin@pollyhillarboretum.org.

The West Tisbury library has scheduled lots of interesting special programs along with their regular weekly offerings. Sol y Canto, a Pan-Latin sextet, will perform this Saturday, July 25, at 4 pm. Rosi Amador is the singer, and Brian Amador the composer and guitarist. There is also accompaniment on piano, woodwinds, bass, and percussion, all an interpretation of contemporary Latin music. The whole family is welcome to this free program.

Laura Edelman is offering two free yoga classes at the library. Tweens and teens meet on Saturday, July 25, and August 5, 10:15 to 11:00. Classes for 4- to 8-year-olds are Tuesday mornings, 10:15 to 11:00, this Saturday, July 25, and August 1 and 8. Please preregister at the library.

Anna Mia Davidson will speak about her new book of photographs at the library on Tuesday, July 28, at 5 o’clock. “Human Nature: Sustainable Farming in the Pacific Northwest” has just been published.

Jennifer Steele will read from and discuss her new book, “The Ambassador’s Wife,” at the library on Wednesday, July 29, at 7 o’clock.

Monday, July 20, Writers Read will meet at 7 pm. All are invited to bring short works of original prose — fiction or nonfiction. You are allotted six minutes, so sign up at the library circulation desk.

As our Friends of the West Tisbury Library are preparing for their annual Book Sale, so are their cohorts at the Oak Bluffs Library. Oak Bluffs’ sale is in the library, and begins this Thursday, July 23, 10 to 4, through Saturday, July 25, 10 to 2. Ours begins next week: Friday, July 31, through Monday, August 3. Tables and books already fill the West Tisbury School gym. I called Chilmark to check with them, but their sale isn’t till mid-December. Plenty of opportunities for book lovers on our Island.

West Tisbury cartoonist Paul Karasik invites everyone to a “Very Semi-Serious” discussion at the MVRHS Performing Arts Center this Friday evening, July 24, at 7:30. Bob Mankoff, cartoon editor for the New Yorker, and island cartoonists Mr. Karasik and Mick Stevens will likely provide an entertaining program. Tickets are available at tmvff.org/very_semi_serious.

If you have ever wondered if lightning strikes twice in the same place, or have any other storm or weather questions, Felix Neck has invited weatherman John Pearson and his electrostatic-energy Van De Graaff generator to speak and demonstrate on Monday, July 27, 7 to 8 o’clock. The event is free, and all are welcome.

When I called the Chilmark Library earlier, I had a chance to catch up with Ebba Hierta, and through her, her husband. “How’s Chuck?” I asked. Ebba told me he was having a busy summer, but has managed to get in a little fishing. He caught three keeper fluke the other day and, using the miracle of cell phones, was able to call friends right from the boat, still offshore, and invite them to share the bounty that night for dinner. Nice to hear stories about our year-round friends getting to enjoy their summers and do normal stuff. Even just a little.