Happy Thanksgiving

Hope each of you will find something to celebrate and be grateful for this Thanksgiving. Sometimes it is really a stretch for so many to find even a tiny thing to bring a smile or to be grateful for, but often, unexpectedly, when we dig deep, we can find a kernel of goodness beneath all the negatives. Blessed be.

Town and school

The Town office and the library will be closed Thursday and Friday Nov. 25 and 26 in observance of Thanksgiving, but the library will be open Saturday, regular hours, 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. All local schools are closed today, Wednesday through Friday, with regular schedules resuming Monday, Nov. 29.

Remiss

Sometimes things slip through the cracks and I neglect to acknowledge people so important to his community. That happened recently when somehow I didn’t learn about the death of Stephen Hinrichs. Stephen was one of those quiet, unassuming people who did so much for Rockport, particularly the library. He served terms as an elected Library Committee member and became treasurer of that committee providing invaluable expertise to the library and the town with guidance through various financial issues. Condolences are extended to Stephen’s family and friends with much gratitude for his community service, especially to the library.

Books, plus

Rockport Public Library’s Booklovers’ Cafe will be held Saturday, Nov. 27 from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Come at 9:30 for some extra, informal book chat time and join this “drop-in” group of booklovers as favorite reads/listens from the month are presented and discussed.

The RPL Book Group facilitated by Jenni Ruddy will meet Wednesday, Dec. 1 at 6:30 p.m. at the library. This month’s book is “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien. All are welcome any time!

To see booklists compiled from both groups, visit www.rockport.lib.me.us and click on each groups. And for daily/special library events, same web site, “Events Calendar” or call, 236-3642.

Citizens for Value In Education

Fortunately for our communities, this group continues its important work into the coming school budget process. Dialogue opened regarding tough school funding/financial decisions can only improve the process. Thanks, Alex and all, for your ongoing hard work with this process and group. The next meeting of VIE will be held Tuesday, Nov. 30 at 7 p.m. at the Rockport Opera House. This should be a great informational meeting with one of my favorite people, Mike Weatherwax, assistant superintendent of schools. He’ll discuss the financial aspects of possible consolidation of our schools. The meeting is open to all. Good time to get involved with this group.

Camden Conference Community Outreach

This diverse series of free and low-cost programs, focused around the theme of the 24th annual Camden Conference: The Challenges of Asia, to be held Feb. 18-20, 2011, continues Tuesday, Nov. 30 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Brewster Grace will present a talk, “Environment, Labor and U.S. Trade with Asia.” The talk will be held at the Camden library and is open to the public free of charge.

Christmas by the Sea

Okay Virginia, forget Santa Claus for now, because “Yes there is a Christmas by the Sea!” Wonderful events and wonderful opportunity to “shop locally” for all your holiday gifts. Merryspring features one of the great kick-off events with its “Members’ Opening” of the annual “Holiday Bazaar,” one of Merryspring’s major fund raisers. The event will be held next Thursday Dec. 2 from 2 to 7 p.m. (you can join MNC then, remembering, members receive a 10 percent discount on everything). The “main event,” open to all will be held Saturday, Dec. 4, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Check out the bazaar catalog on the web site, www.merryspring.org or call Merryspring, 236-2239 for more information.

Nature watch

So funny, so silly! Thirteen wild turkeys (guess they don’t read the calendar! ), make daily forays down the field across the street, then cross the street onto the stretch of wooded area by our driveway, across and down the driveway into the back yard and gardens, gleaning any scraps and back into the woods behind the house and on their merry way. I was amazed to see how incredibly large the “chicks” had become and that they’re all still together! Don’t they ever “leave the nest?!”

Night skies

The moon will be in its last quarter Sunday, Nov. 28. This month, we’ve had the good fortune to see the moon often and the near and then full moon were beautiful – almost looked like what I remember “Harvest” moons looking like.

Time transport

I began writing this column on Sunday, Nov. 21 and finished it on Monday, Nov. 22. No matter where I am, what I’m doing, Nov. 22 always finds me transported back to 1963. Every moment of that bleak day replays in my head and heart. I was student teaching at the Plattsburgh SAC Air Force Base when President Kennedy was shot. We knew something bad had happened as not just one wave of planes took off, but then another and another. For me, for so many reasons, President Kennedy’s assassination continues to be the singular most devastating, memorable, historical event I’ve experienced. The adage, “Time heals all wounds” just doesn’t apply to Nov. 22, 1963.