When herring start making an appearance on the Wampanoag Tribe’s Department of Natural Resources Herring Creek camera it’s a sure sign spring has nearly sprung. I am, however, wondering what April will bring. The popular weather folklore phrase is: “March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb.”

It’s been very lion-like with roaring winds here at the end of the month.

Congratulations to David Halsey who was awarded the operational auxiliarist (AUXOP) designation. This is in recognition of his advanced training achievements. Tim Carroll, flotilla coxswain, said: “While other flotillas may boast when 5 per cent of their members achieve this status, we are proud to have 33 per cent of our members who have earned the prestigious Operational Auxiliarist Award.”

The program is no simple feat and members who attain AUXOP status should be justly proud of their accomplishment. Congratulations to Tim, as well, who walked away from last week’s off-Island training with another certificate in hand. He can be humble at times and didn’t share exactly what it was for.

It seems like just yesterday that coast-guardsman Ezra Brown and his bride Cait were sharing the news that they would soon be parents. Time has passed quickly and little Ryker has celebrated his first birthday. He wasn’t too sure how to blow out a candle so his folks helped. He wasn’t too sure he wanted to eat his cupcake either, but regardless of these technical details, fun and festivities surrounded the big guy on his special day and he continues to bring joy and laughter to the people who love him.

Genc Brinja has returned from the bright lights and fun city of Miami where he attended the Ultra Music Festival. Although the first day was overcome by a significant rain event, the next two days boasted “elite DJs and unparalleled production.”

A shout out goes to summertime visitor Dan Ryan. Dan was kind enough to think of me and he dropped a really fun pair of Texaco socks in the mail to me. Socks are just about the most fun piece of clothing you can put on. Not only are they an essential component of footwear, but they have evolved in terms of purpose, practicality and true style. For years Julie Flanders and I have been giving each other socks for various holidays. At this point, I’d call it a tradition. Thank you, Dan, for adding a fun new pair to my line up.

Meg Athearn is getting herself all psyched up for the New York City Marathon. Although the 26.2-mile race through all five boroughs of New York City isn’t until November, now is the time to make a monetary contribution to her fundraising effort. Meg is running as part of Team JDRF. JDRF is the leading global organization funding the autoimmune disease type 1diabetes research. Give Meg a shout for more details.

El and Wren Christy traveled to southern California with their Middlebury College track and field team for, as their dad Todd said, “a lot of racing, and jumping and throwing and hurdling.” What a fun team-building experience.

Just a few days after celebrating his 77th birthday, Will Parry completed his time on Earth. Will was not only a dedicated family man, but he committed nearly three decades serving on the Chilmark volunteer Fire Department and most recently on the building committee that finally saw a new station come to fruition. Will was a skilled craftsman and a life-long consumer of Popsicles, preferably orange. My condolences go out to Kathleen, Cameron, Caitlin and their families and friends.