My mind has been far away from Bridgehampton this past week, as I am still trying to come to grips with the fact that my wife’s family cabin in Vermont, where, faithful readers will remember, I liked to get away to for a little rest and relaxation every autumn, burned to the ground last Thursday. And when I say burned to the ground, I mean burned to the ground. My sister-in-law sent out some photos and the only things remaining are the concrete footings, a pile of tin roofing, the wood stove, propane tank and a few other pieces of metal.
The fire started shortly after some family members who were at the cabin for a winter getaway, left to return home. Shortly after they left, a neighbor saw smoke and called the fire department. By the time it got there, the cabin was engulfed in flames. We’re still trying to figure out if someone didn’t dispose of embers properly or left a gas line open. Doesn’t really matter. Now, we have to make the difficult decision of deciding whether or not we rebuild.
Closer to home: All it took was a mention that we still hadn’t seen any snow for Mother Nature to sock us pretty hard on Saturday. I don’t know about you, but I think you have to have some snow in the winter to brighten things up a bit. It would be nice if it would stick around for a couple of weeks instead of melting away so quickly.
The Bridgehampton Village Improvement Society, which underwrites the Christmas trees, potted geraniums and other beautification efforts in town, has asked me to thank all the people and businesses who donated to its 2011 Christmas Tree Fund. So here goes: Special thanks are due the Almond Group, Kathleen M. Alcott, Barylski Land Surveyor, Mark Borghi Fine Art, the Candy Kitchen, Bridgehampton Capital, the Bridgehampton Florist, the Bridgehampton Inn, Bridgehampton Wireless, Christopher Brougham, R. Bruce and Martha Brougham, Brown Harris Stevens, Capelli Hair & Skin, C.&W. Mercantile, Coastal Home, Comerford Hennessey At Home, Dayton Ritz & Osborne, DePetris Liquor Store, The Design Studio, Farrell Building Company, Farrell Fritz, Fay Teller Salon, Fountainhead Construction, Gavalas Builders, the Golden Pear Cafe, Group for the East End, Herzog & Little, J. McLaughlin, Jogo Beach, Loaves & Fishes Cookshop, Kathryn Markel Fine Arts, Katherine F. McCoy, the Adam Miller Group, Pulver Gas, Saunders & Associates, Tutto Bene, Bobby Van’s Restaurant, Diane Johnson Wade, Waves, World Pie and Yama-Q Foods.
If you’d like to find out more about the BVIS, check out its website at www.bvis-li.org.
Congratulations to Mark Barylski of Bridgehampton who was named to the dean’s list at Paul Smith’s College in upstate New York for the fall semester. He is majoring in surveying technology and earned a semester average of 3.3 or higher to receive the distinction. Paul Smith’s College is on the shore of Lower St. Regis Lake and is the only four-year institution of higher education in the 6-million-acre Adirondack Park of New York State. Sounds like a pretty cool place to go to college.
Congratulations are also due to Rebecca Massi of Bridgehampton who was named to the dean’s list for the fall semester at Keene State College in New Hampshire. To earn the distinction, she had to maintain a grade point average of 3.5 or higher. Keene State College is a public liberal arts college that ensures student access to world-class academic programs and integrates academics with real-world application and active community and civic engagement.
This just in from the Horticultural Alliance of the Hamptons. There will be a garden book discussion group meeting on Saturday, February 4, at 11 a.m. in the horticultural library at the Bridgehampton Community House. Reviewers will report on “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle” by Barbara Kingsolver; “Adventures of a Gardener” by Peter Smithers, and “People with Dirty Hands” by Robin Chotzinoff. Admission is free. Call 631-537-2223 for information.
The Hampton Library will screen “Groundhog Day” starring Bill Murray on Thursday, February 2, at 1 p.m. in honor of that strangest of holidays.
The library’s English as a Second Language and Outreach program will present a citizenship class, “100 Questions,” on Thursdays, January 26 and February 16, at 4 p.m. Participants will learn the basics of American civics in the class.
The Bilingual Book Club will discuss “Brida” by Paulo Coehlo on Monday, February 6, at 1 p.m. The press release tells me it is a story of “love, passion, mystery and spirituality from a master storyteller.” (Hmm. Sounds a lot like this column.)