Islander's Blog

Goodman’s Gam

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Lately I’ve noticed how many parking spots are available in the middle of town, even in the morning hours. On a sunny day in the afternoon, people head for the beach. This exodus doesn’t start until after lunchtime. Monday, shortly before noon, found me with my pick of half a dozen prime parking spaces.

I had been prepared to make a couple of laps through the Centre Street, Federal Street, Main Street environs. If need be, I’d move further out to park. I had a couple of important errands and they couldn’t wait. That, and it looked like rain was on the way. The (non) parking situation was bound to deteriorate.

I was taken aback when the first space appeared in front of me. Not shocked enough, because I drove by it, looking for an even better spot. The following one beckoned. Walking toward Main Street, two more empty slots appeared and then another deuce in front of Nantucket Pharmacy. The next time, I’ll try parking in the first place I see. There’s no way that could ever happen again in mid July.

There are going to be two events on Saturday, July 24, that shouldn’t be missed. First is a ceremony celebrating the 351st anniversary of English settlers landing on-island. Thomas Macy, his people and the people of the Wampanoag nation came face to face in Madaket. The year was 1659. At 4 p.m. on Blue Heron Way, there will be a ceremony, dedicating a carved boulder describing that first meeting.

To find the event, turn right off the Madaket Road, at the sign for Madaket Marine. Follow the balloons to the Land Bank property and be prepared to witness a historic moment. There will be descendants of the original settlers and the Wampanoags in attendance. Afterward, at 5 p.m., there’s a reception at The Chicken Box. Should there be rain, the ceremony will be held on Sunday, but either way, the reception takes place on Saturday.

I no longer have the responsibility of mowing a lawn. Those that do now have a respite, with so little rainfall of late. What is a problem, and is wreaking havoc with our public water supply, are lawn sprinklers. That, in combination with local golf courses, is a huge drain on our water table. At least farmers produce edible products with their water usage.

Most people aren’t pleased with the new water towers, one mid-island and the other in Sconset. Aesthetics is the complaint I hear. They’re not lovely, appearing like tall, industrial mushrooms. My feeling is that in a few years, most folks will barely notice their presence. Do remember, as ugly as they look, should a major brush fire erupt, they could save your home.

Have you noticed that Nantucket has been taken over by Range Rovers? They’re the 21st- century version of a Grand Wagoneer. Then, we see Smart Cars buzzing all over town. They look kind of neat, though I’d hate to experience a car crash while riding in one of them.

I’ve now had a couple of meals at Todd Arno’s, down on Easy Street. Both were outstanding. Food was plentiful and well-prepared and prices were more than reasonable. I’d been meaning to try them out, ever since Sarah Chase gave them a resounding review, a few months ago. She was right on the mark, as was the eatery.

The New York Times ran a piece in its travel section last week. “36 Hours in Nantucket,” was one of the better articles regarding what goes on here. There were a couple of slight blips, but otherwise the piece was on the mark.

I’m a couple weeks late on this, though there’s lots of time before this is likely to occur. Why was the Fourth of July celebration on Main Street held on July 3? I realize the Fourth was on a Sunday, but it could have easily been accommodated. Several people have told me they missed the fun, simply because it was assumed to be on the appointed day. If it was all right to have the fireworks display on the right date, why not the Main Street fete?

Then there were the inevitable delays due to a triathlon, held on one of the busiest days of the summer season. Regardless of how one feels about the relevance of these events in the high season, the biggest problem is traffic control. The CSOs (Cops, Sort Of) aren’t equipped to handle traffic details, much less the normal police force. If enough of the right (qualified) people can’t be found to make this a seamless operation, let’s skip road races, until we’re in the off-season.
– Goodman’s Gam appears weekly in this space, and periodically in The Inquirer and Mirror.

2 Responses to “Goodman’s Gam”

  1. AckBoater Says:

    I’m all for local events which pump money into our economy but please have them in the off season so as not to inconvenience everyone especially Nantucketers trying to get to work.

  2. David Says:


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