As you well know, these are treacherous times. Our school systems have been ravaged, restaurants and other businesses are struggling or closing, sports, concerts, lecture events are cancelled or on hold. You can do your part by voting and voting early. Our six Island towns are ready and able to accept your early ballot. All who have made use of this great new option tell me our poll workers are efficient and kind and get you through quickly. I’ll see you at the polls.

The Blessing of the Animals on St. Francis day took place two weeks ago. One of the eager and grateful dogs began drinking out of Father Nagle’s bucket of holy water. My suggestion for next year is that we fit Father’s bucket with a snap lid like on my morning coffee cup. You really can’t blame the pooch for trying to get an edge on blessings.

Did my little third grader from my first teaching class at the Tisbury School actually grow up and get married? The beautiful Kelly Felder married handsome Doug Stafford on Sept. 26. They reside in Vineyard Haven. May they live happily ever after.

Naromar DePaula Jr. of Edgartown, son of my friend Leide Prata, and graduate of MVRHS, has just graduated boot camp at Parris Island. I have known this young man since he was a toddler and now he is now a full- fledged Marine. I wanted to drive with Leide to his graduation as my mother and I did for my son’s boot camp ceremony but Covid has changed all that. However, Leide has fabulous pictures to show you. This young man is definitely going places. Thank you for your service.

Join me in condolences for the Tileston and Hoffmann families. Marge Tileston, a beacon at the end of Hines Point, has passed at age 96 at her assisted living home in Palo Alto. Strong, caring and truly in love with people, Marge was a light in so many lives. May she rest in peace.

The birthday bandwagon pulled along Steffie Elliott on Oct. 16; Deidre Lynch and Karen Ward claimed Oct. 17; Noel Macy partied on Oct. 18; Erich Luening marked another year on Oct. 20; Lori Robinson Fisher, our administrator at Islanders Talk, observed Oct. 21 along with Jane Tompkins Christensen Gerber; Oct. 22 is for Barbara McMurray; Oct. 23 honors Mary Owens Delaney and Nate D’Angelo; and on Oct. 24 Nancy Merriman, Katelyn Masi, and Kathy Nelson take the cake. Many happy returns.