Kim and I buried a beautiful bird on our beach this past Tuesday. No sign of trauma, he (or she) just seemed to have had enough of bird life. Not a seagull, but gull-like, with a downy belly and blue eyes. We buried bird high on the beach with a couple of local shells and some seaweed. Any life passed can be an odd reckoning for the living.

Anyway, life on Chappy continues at its unique pace — a hurried nonchalance. Our paved road serves as a fairly accurate mirror of the island’s mood: 25 per cent easy goes it, 75 cent easy doesn’t go it. I continue to worry for the Chappy bikers, especially the less experienced of the lot. Sure hope that the much talked about biker education program gets under way soon. 2020? (I think Chappy time has some similarities to dog years.)

The water is warmer than I can remember in years. But I think with the warmth come the jellyfish. I’m not a fan of the small clear ones, as I prefer my swims non-gelatinous. But the big red devils are the disturbing sights. I’ve been stung a few times, and it’s do-able — like an ant bite. But they just look so ominous. The Halls (big campers) brought a stand-up paddle board with them, so I’ve been able to use that to survey the ocean for my nemesises, from a safe distance above the ocean’s surface. But the paddle board takes some concentration (as a novice) to remain upright, and the red jellies seem to know this. They cruise by, daring me to look down, to join them in their world. We won’t sting you. We promise. Oh, I’ve heard that before, jellies.

We’re hoping that the Martha’s Vineyard Preservation Trust will renew their interest in our idea to have a satellite farmstand at the School House (on the Marshall Farm). Seems practical, and would be great to have some fresh produce and baked goods on-island. Our poor abandoned Marshall Farm berries have been overwhelmed by weeds and lack of water — but after the hundreds of hours we spent cultivating them, we hope that the birds, at least, are enjoying the blueberries. I’ve seen some pretty fat robins in that area. The raspberries may have survived as well, so it may be worth a trip to take a look. Just look for a thorny mess to the south of the farmhouse.

I was napping on my tractor beneath the pines earlier this week, when I felt the eerie sensation of being watched. A casual glance at my surroundings revealed little, but a closer inspection of the treetops revealed more than a couple crows. Lots of crows and ravens. Lots and lots. But despite their mythology and Hitchcockian/Poe-ish aura, I find the group’s (okay, murder) intentions to be benevolent. Yes, one could believe that they were silently plotting an elaborate coordinated effort to carry my sleeping body to the treetops to feed their young (a noble death), but I choose to believe that they were simply looking after a dear friend. Thanks ebony caretakers!

Far less innocent, and far more ill-intentioned, however, are the v’s of Canada geese that have been buzzing the golf course lately. They’re not fooling me, those are no casual Sunday morning jaunts, but scouting missions for winter pooping sites. I’ve got your number geese! But it just goes to voicemail.

August is upon us, and with it a new breed of visitors. Not making judgement on quality, just taking notice of a change in tides. When I worked as a bellhop at an inn in New Hampshire, August guests were from Philadelphia and Washington D.C. and wore lots of pink and green. July guests were Westchester County and New Jersey and wore tight running gear. I loved them all equally. Same goes for Chappy folk! And I am certain the feeling is mutual.

Chappy summer resident Judith Fleming passed away on July 24. Husband Blaine related the sad news. Judy first came to the island with first husband, Rev. Bruce Hill. Rev. Hill died on Chappy in 1976, and is buried in the Chappy cemetery. Blaine hopes to hold a memorial service for Judy next summer (when son Jeffery is on-island) at the Chappy cemetery.

This coming week at the Chappy Community Center, Laura Jemison’s art exhibit begins on Sunday with an opening party from 4 to 6 p.m. The kids movie is Monday this week: Monster vs. Aliens at 7 p.m. Tuesday night is the tennis cocktail party from 6:30 to 8 p.m., to celebrate our progress toward building a tennis court. Information about the court will be available that evening, and Paul Pertile, tennis court contractor, will be there to answer questions. On Wednesday, August 11, there will be an ice cream social from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday marks the end of the CCC sailing program for this summer, but tennis classes will continue until August 26.

Mary’s Friday night movie is Offside from Iran at 8 p.m. The CCC annual meeting is on Saturday at 9 a.m. Please come and vote on important community center issues. Bob O’Rourke is available for table tennis on the porch from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday.

This week’s horoscope: misty memories of maudlin melodies remain momentarily enmeshed in melancholy.

Lotto picks: far be it for me to judge, but perhaps your money could be better spent this week. Just this week. Go back to regular gambling activities next week. Just a thought.

And now the rest of the story . . . .

Don’t forget the Rotary Club pancake breakfast this Sunday from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Anchors. Come visit local Rotarian Liz Villard, and tell her Brad sent ya! Won’t get you a discount. But maybe a smile. Possibly a frown.

The All Island Art Show took place this past week. Among Chappy participants, the following won awards: Laura Jemison, Sharon Daly, Leslie Look, B. White, and Bob Fitzgerald. Annie Heywood’s genius went unappreciated this time around, but if I remember my art history, Van Gogh didn’t place in the first few All Arles Art Fairs.

The Chappy book club will meet on Thursday, August 26 (mark your calendars!) at the CCC to discuss Kathryn Stockett’s The Help. All are welcome. Friendly people and lively discussion have been promised. Dissenting opinions however will NOT be tolerated (that’s not true, but I’m curious whether people read my announcements). Please contact Ellen Sole with any questions. About anything.

Saturday, August 14, Polly Hill Arboretum will hold it’s annual plant walk on Chappy from 10 a.m. to noon. Please meet at the CCC. Fee for walk is $20 for CCC and PHA members. $24 for all other ne’er do wells.