Oak Bluffs: We all need to use these tools

— Shelby Regan

“Your success and happiness lies in you. Resolve to keep happy, and your JOY and YOU shall form an invincible host against difficulties.”  –Helen Keller

I picked up two home COVID test kits at the Oak Bluffs Town Hall last week. The process was so organized and easy; thank you to the town officials and volunteers! The kits will be offered for free as long as they continue to receive them from the state; check the town website for times. These kits are another great tool for us to battle this latest COVID surge. You can report a positive test, and get more information about what to do if you have a positive test, or have had a close contact, at rapidtestmv.org.

Vaccines and testing are available; we all need to use these tools, and we’ll get through this. You can get tested through Island Health Care at the Ag Hall in West Tisbury. See ihimv.org for all the info. Testing at the M.V. Hospital is easy, also. Call 508-684-4500 for an appointment, the testing tent is open every morning, Monday through Saturday, 8:30 to 10 am (until 11:30 on Mondays). See mvhospital.org for more information.

Speaking of our hospital, aren’t we lucky? Nobody ever wants to go to the hospital, but we happen to have a hospital that doubles as a fabulous art museum. Some hallways are filled with iconic photographs, others with historical pieces and stories, plus there is amazing artwork by famous and local artists throughout the corridors and offices.

Watch your change! A new series of quarters has been released this month, featuring female historical figures. The first new quarter, launched Jan. 10, features Maya Angelou. The “American Women Quarters” series will roll out through 2025, and each issue will feature a different woman who impacted American history. George Washington’s face will still be on the reverse side, though his sculpture will look different from the one we are used to seeing. The new quarters will showcase the original 1932 sculpture of our first president; coin collectors will notice he is facing to the right.

Maybe you would like to run for a local office? The League of Women Voters of M.V. is sponsoring a series of interviews on MVTV with elected officials from various towns to share personal stories about running for office and serving the community. These interviews begin with Emma Green-Beach from the Oak Bluffs select board on Jan 18 at 11:30 am, but they will all be available to stream later. In February, the interviews will feature Ben Robinson of the Tisbury planning board, and West Tisbury town clerk Tara Whiting-Wells.

Need a Saturday night date? Set the table, put your apron on, and go to “Virtual Cooking with Carolina,” from our O.B. library. She cooks a new dish live from her kitchen every Saturday from 5 to 6 pm, just in time for dinner. Find the Zoom link at oakbluffslibrary.org.

From virtual cooking to virtual exercise — join Bill White’s exercise class on Thursdays at 9 am via Zoom, and/or work out with Floyd Lifton on Fridays at 9 am. Both classes are free and fun; the Zoom links can be found in the Council on Aging newsletter. The West Tisbury library is offering virtual yoga and Pilates classes; check its website for times and details.

Ronnie Spector, the original bad girl of rock ’n’ roll, died on Jan. 12. I am quite sure that around age 13, I once played “Be My Baby” with the telephone held against the Hi-Fi speaker, and I may have dialed the number of the boy I had a crush on before holding the phone to the speaker. And his mom may have answered the phone and said “Hello? Hello?” a few times before hanging up.

I want to wish a belated happy birthday to Kim D’Arcy, who was too busy serving families at the Family Center and driving her kids to activities to tell me about her birthday on Jan. 12. On the 21st, we celebrate more Capricorns: Talia Rogers, Catherine Deese, and Tristan Araujo. Happy birthday to Holly Nadler on the 23rd, and January 26  is Mary Leddy’s special day.

“Happy Birthday” was the song suggested to sing while we wash our hands, another tool we have to prevent COVID spread. Keep singing and washing, and as my friend Carla Montori says, “Stay clean of hand and high of heart!”

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