The news from Vinalhaven
After previous weeks of almost no rain, this week of seemingly constant rain has certainly marked the change of seasons. With night-time temperatures dipping into the low 40s in spots and apples starting to taste good off the trees, it makes sense that downtown has calmed down and school has revved up. Out on a soggy trail this week I noticed a few early leaves turning color and the Autumnal Equinox is creeping closer.
The Men’s Book Club met recently to discuss the book by Ken Reiss titled "The Bodwell and Webster Papers, Big Business on a Small Island: The Birth of the Granite Boom." Ken was in attendance to discuss his work published by the Vinalhaven Historical Society. There was of course an ample potluck dinner loosely themed around the granite days with meat and potatoes, some crab legs and multiple fine desserts, or so a book-club insider informed me.
When I was around town on North Haven this week, I happened upon their Thursday Coffee Hour at Waterman’s Community Center where various folks of the older generations get together for sweets and chit-chat every week. What a good idea, and wouldn’t it be nice if we had something like that here. Its merits were mainly in its accessibility in that anyone passing through could connect. I had a couple good conversations with folks and am always impressed with the friendly atmosphere there.
Back here on our side of the water, some places are wrapping up business for the season as others continue their good service throughout the year. The days of dining harbor side and by the millstream may be limited at official establishments, but surely there will be good picnic days for a while to come.
What folks are talking about
I’ve heard various topics both wide-ranging and conflicting including the continuing lack of available parking spots in the lot downtown and the absence of tourists. Also folks are talking about the tax bills that were sent around recently which were up a bit over last year. Depending on your outlook it could mean the town is doing a good job of taking care of business. The various detours on roads around town that change every couple of days due to continuing town road work stir up some conversation, and the crews have been moving so swiftly from site to site that folks don’t have time to be inconvenienced for long. People are also talking about all the job openings. In an economy where you hear about people being out of work and needing jobs, from the school to the docks, it seems we have plenty of job openings.
One job that is filled is the new ICMS/ARC joint fellow from the Island Institute. Kelsey Byrd has that position and is now settling in on the island. Information about programs she’s helping with will surely be forthcoming, and do say hello to her if you see her around town. Other new faces around town are likely day trippers as they were out in droves at the end of the week. They were enjoying the sunshine and taking photos of the harbor, the wild poppies, and the granite arches. Even if you’re not a day tripper, they’re certainly things worth enjoying.
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