Out on the water the sun starts to go down, an orange ball dropping into the ocean, the kind of daily finale the tourists applaud at Menemsha in August. Lev Wlodyka watches it appreciatively, and suddenly prime time has arrived. The monofilament peels off my reel, and as I wait for the moment to set the hook Lev starts to coach.

“Hit him, hit him, hit him!”

David Kinney


When you live on an island, it’s inevitable that you’ll find yourself in unlikely relationships. Sure, there are the regulars in your life – family, friends, the people you work with – but then there are the others, the unexpecteds.

Kate Feiffer


In my car aboard the freight deck of the Governor, headed over choppy waves to Woods Hole one fall morning, I couldn’t help but notice the large windshield sticker on the car in front of me: VINEYARDERS. While I considered whether or not a true Islander would ever own such a sticker, the reality of my own Island status hit and humbled me.

Barbara Leham Smith


Oh, we loved those baby trees. Scraggly little things: bare-root tulip trees. One hundred and fifty of them. Let me repeat: One hundred and fifty of them. Only eighteen inches tall, they would eventually soar to eighty feet, with trunks too thick to close your arms around. And there were (did I mention this?) one hundred and fifty of them.

Nicole Galland


The first time I ever came to the Island of Martha’s Vineyard, I had never heard of it, and nobody I knew had ever heard of it. That was sixty-plus years ago, in 1946. Today, it is surprising to meet anyone in the world who has never heard of it.

Shirley Mayhew


Sofa bed. The country-themed print with barely discernible stains has just enough wear and tear to give this sofa bed a comfortable, homey feel. The former owners supplemented the couch with a piece of plywood for extra support and are passing along the plywood for your convenience.

Kate Feiffer


If you’ve gotten the call, you know how it feels. I had never gotten one before, so I didn’t know how I’d react. Actually, I had never even thought about how I’d respond.

When the phone rang on a cold, dreary, winter morning, I wasn’t expecting the call to be from the Martha’s Vineyard Steamship Authority. I assumed it would be from the furnace guy who was supposed to have been in my basement cleaning my furnace forty-five minutes ago.

Kate Feiffer


The young think they will never be old. Gradually, they realize that they will age and even die, but not yet. At fifty, you’re just hitting your stride. Sixty is still pretty young. I thought I would never be seventy, but now I feel lucky to have made it so far. Even so, I don’t feel like an old woman except for the moments when I see my mother in the mirror or when a person offers me a seat on the T (or when nobody gives me a seat and I wish someone would) or when I get the senior discount without asking for it.

Betsy Campbell