Well, Hurricane Sandy set some weather records on Monday for sure. We were subjected to heavy winds in excess of 60 mph, rain, costal erosion and flooding in low-lying areas. On Monday everything was cancelled: boats, planes, schools for two days, municipal buildings and many stores were closed. About the only thing open in town was the post office, but they had no mail to sort or deliver.

We return to Standard Time Sunday morning, making daylight hours mighty short with a sunset of 4:30 p.m. So be sure to turn your clocks back one hour Saturday night before you go to bed. That way you will be sure to get to church on time in the morning.

Anna, Sam and I went up to Kerhonkson, N.Y., deep in the Hudson Valley last weekend to attend the Grand Commanders reception honoring Sir Knight Donald Berry (Anna and Nina’s brother) on his elevation to the position of Grand Commander, Knights Templar of the state of New York. It was written in the program of the evening’s events that it is the final step in the pilgrimage of Freemasonry. We stayed with her sister Nina, her husband Dieter and their son Nick at their place in Providence and had a swell time, as usual. They also attended the reception but could not leave at the same time as we did. On Friday we drove over to Taunton to visit daughter Nicole, her husband Arson and their son Robbie. We formed a two-car convoy in Taunton and drove out to Lenox to spend the night. First everyone shopped at an outlet store except me and we ate dinner at a superb Italian restaurant, Mazzeo’s, a very popular place in the Berkshires. We met the owner Tony, maître d’ Steve Valenti and receptionist Denise Bouchard, who keeps the place running smoothly. They could not have been more helpful and kind to a bunch of strangers. We stopped at an apple orchard to buy apple butter and fresh cider donuts before leaving town.

The drive to New York was picturesque although most of the leaves had turned. Beech, birch and red maple trees were still in full color and formed quite an amazing tapestry with the mountains in the background. The reception and dinner of about 200 guests was marked by pageantry, rituals and a few brief speeches. The comments the next morning by the guests that spent the night were mostly about Sandy: where was it headed, when and where would it arrive. You could feel a sense of urgency by everyone that it was time to leave in a hurry and get home. It was a different ride back as many more leaves had fallen. Traffic headed to New York was vicious, dotted with convoys of electric trucks and flashing lights. We were fortunate to make it home on the 6:15 p.m. boat, perhaps the last one to the Vineyard that night.

Tuesday is the presidential election and polls will be open at the Public Safety Building from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Please be sure to vote and exercise your right. There will be a number of ballot questions and candidates for office so be sure to study your voter guide over the weekend.

Brien Hefler reports that a seasonal tradition returns to the Mansion House on Thursday as more than a dozen scarecrows will gather on the inn’s porch offering a perfect portrait of Island creativity. This year’s scarecrow festival boasts a literary theme with a diverse cast of characters from favorite books and stories. Each scarecrow is sponsored by an Island business with proceeds benefiting the Martha’s Vineyard Public Charter School. Mansion House will again host a celebration for the charter school and scarecrows.

Work began on Nov. 1, 1950 on a fire station on Edgartown Road. The site, a two-acre parcel, was donated by Mrs. Susan Scott and was located directly across the street from her home. This climaxed several weeks of discussion by the selectmen to find a home for the town’s new fire truck. Nelson S. Bryant, chairman of the selectmen, expressed pleasure with the chosen location. He said her offer was far and away the most practical that they had received. John G. MacKenty, president of the Agricultural Society, wrote a letter indicating that the Society was willing to donate some of their land for that purpose and it was approved by their membership. However, the letter clearly pointed out the donated land was to be accessed only from school property. When objections arose about that, Mr. Bryant said the entire project was up in the air again. The board then voted to accept Mrs. Scott’s offer, which was the first proposal discussed by the board.

Happy birthday to Julie Skinner, Doug Kent, Liz Bouck and Gabrielle Knight today; Mary Lee McCormick, Carey Rosenthal, Lucy Mayhew and Charlene Douglas tomorrow; Maggie Chianese, Norm Perry and Sarah Monast on Sunday; Aaron Metell and David Sprague on Monday; Marian Irving, Dawn Feinsmith, Pat Waring and Will Rogers on Tuesday; Marylee Schroder, Judy Jarhries and Anthony Esposito on Wednesday; and Vicki Thurber and Oliva Gross on Thursday. Belated birthday wishes to John Adams.

Well, that is all of the social news for this week. If you have any news, please call or email me. A trivia fact to use at your next social gathering: today the Combined Japanese Fleet receives Top-Secret Order No. 1: In just 33 days, Pearl Harbor is to be bombed, along with Malaya, the Dutch East Indies, and the Philippines. Have a great week.