With all the cold and rainy weather it’s as if the seasons have been trying to go backwards. No doubt we’ll be complaining about the heat before long, though. Memorial Day weekend seemed quiet, but since I mostly stayed home, I can’t be sure about that. I was surprised at how many people were still around on Tuesday. Usually there is a lull after the long weekend, but unlike the weather, there is no going backwards as far as the influx of summer.
Peter has been driving the second ferry regularly the past few weeks, as work on house and yard intensifies and lines build up quickly with trucks of all kinds. Maddie Lecoq was back at work as deckhand on the weekend. The extra traffic with paving machines was supposed to happen last week but the machine that grinds the asphalt was broken. It is now fixed and the work should be done by the time you read this. The plan is to repair just the patches of cracked asphalt that were marked, of which there are many.
The tide has been especially low this week, exposing areas of the channel bottom normally never out of water. At low tide, the ferry rests extraordinarily deep in the slip, making you wonder if there’s enough water to get across. Peter says these extra low tides attract fully-loaded dump trucks, which have to be turned away to wait for the change of tide. For a good low tide picture, check out thechappyferry Facebook page, on which Tom Dunlop posts lots of great shots and his ferry-related musings.
Chappaquiddick is looking very green these days, and the rosa rugosa is blooming along the road up from the Point. As summer approaches, my tendency is to leave Chappy as little as possible, but there are some things I look forward to going off the island for. This is my favorite time of year to drive the beach road to Oak Bluffs because of the beautiful pink, white and red roses covering the dunes, with the enticing ocean beyond and the expanse of sky above. Also, surprisingly, I’m almost inventing reasons to go to Vineyard Haven just so I can drive through the roundabout. Going around it, even half way, feels kind of like a little carnival ride (living the quiet island life can be short on thrills). Even though I wasn’t in favor of it, I like it now, and find it so much more relaxing than playing a cat and mouse game of who’s going to go first at the old intersection.
Another reason to go off Chappy this summer is Susan Klein’s Spice of Life memoir writing workshop. It will be on four Mondays starting July 8, from 1:30 to 4 p.m. at the Tisbury Senior Center. For information you can call Susan at 508 693-4140. Susan is known as “The Midwife of Story” and gives a great workshop where you can both learn lots and have fun.
This weekend there will be a pop-up performance at The Trustees of Reservation’s Mytoi Garden. Chilmark’s DanceTheYard and the modern dance improv group, What’s Written Within, will be doing a site-specific dance on Saturday, June 1, from 2 to 4 p.m. You can enjoy the performance as it takes place while you meander through the Japanese garden. The event is free and refreshments will be provided. Transportation to and from the Chappy ferry by TTOR van is available on the hour at 2, 3 and 4 p.m., only by preregistration by calling 508-693-7662.
Slip Away farm stand is open Friday through Sunday during daylight hours, and this week offers its eggs, island-made yogurt, coffee beans and produce from its fields including spinach, some herbs (mint, oregano, sage, chives), kale, baby greens mix and spring garlic. Lily says they’re adding tomatoes, peppers and eggplants to their seedlings selection.
The next potluck at the Chappaquiddick Community Center is on Wednesday, June 5, starting at 6 p.m. Judy Buss and Paul Cardello are hosting and everyone is welcome. The CCC is still looking for a host for the last potluck of the season on June 19. Tai chi with Tom Pardee begins on Friday, May 31, from 9 to 10 a.m. The 12 Step program continues at 7 p.m. on Thursdays. The CCC has hired Alex Dunbrack to be office assistant for the summer. Alex has volunteered for years at the CCC and has been an enthusiastic member of the sailing program. Eli (Elizabeth) Reynolds is hired as assistant sailing instructor to work alongside Justin Painter. Check out the beautifully redone website, chappycommunitycenter.org, to find out lots more information, including what will be offered there this summer.
Chappy’s Nika Slade will be working with BiodiversityWorks through the summer. She’ll be helping with the projects run by Luanne Johnson and Liz Baldwin, including otter mapping and monitoring, beach-nesting bird monitoring and protection, and surveys to map and monitor belted kingfisher nest cavities and swallow colonies in cliffs and sandy banks around the Island. You can find out more about their projects and the chance to volunteer at their website, biodiversityworksmv.org. They’re looking for landowners who have otter or kingfisher activity on their property who would like to be included in the mapping projects.
Starting in June, there will a reprise of the Brad Woodger column. Brad is back on Chappy once again, and he and Peter will be alternating weeks writing the column for the summer. Enjoy!