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At this time of the season, we’ve all become used to vehicular traffic where people simply park where they wish to and the heck with everyone else. It’s bad enough to watch this happen in town, while drivers drop off or pick up passengers wherever and whenever they please. Mostly these are short interludes that are frustrating, but gone in a moment.
What doesn’t go away and is beyond mere frustration are the tradesmen parking on tight streets for hours on end. The worst place seems to be along Pleasant Street. A narrow roadway that barely supports a couple of cars going in opposite directions, any snag is multiplied here. In the spring, most of the offending vehicles are pick-up trucks and vans driven by carpenters, electricians and plumbers.
Once summer touches down, tradespeople begin to disappear and the new problems begin. Now, we’re seeing pick-ups dragging trailers with gardening tools behind them. These take up far more space than a car or van and being unwieldy to maneuver, almost always stick further out into traffic lanes than a single vehicle.
Festooned with weed-whackers and mowers, these obstructions sit for hours and (it appears) don’t receive tickets from the police. Every morning on Pleasant Street I have to sit and wait to get around these messes. For some unexplained reason, no parking laws are enforced and gardeners get a free pass along here.
Closing the mid-island post office doesn’t surprise me, but not for the reasons the USPS is using. The lobby is closed for an hour at the busiest time of day, it has almost no parking and accessing the place means driving through another parking lot to get there. Maybe they should leave it open just for box-holders and forget about the rest of the minimal services they provide.
The extension of the Cliff Road Bike Path keeps rolling along. Now that the telephone poles have been removed, let’s see how long it will take to finish up the final paving and fill in around the driveways and sewers. I’d like to see them prove me wrong and complete this prior to Labor Day. As it is, the path has been used at will for months now.
Our weather has picked up nicely of late. Some fog has hung around, though not enough to bother most of us. Even when days have started out looking a little funky, the sun has burned off any haze by noon and beach days have been numerous. For many of us, that’s the time to head in to do errands and pick up mail downtown. After 2 p.m. is when I start to drive in. Once or twice a week, I’ll treat myself to a scoop of ice cream while sitting on Main Street in late afternoon. It’s beautiful at that time of day.
From everything I hear most island eateries are doing great business this summer. Of course, if you don’t make it now, that’s pretty much it. There are a few places I’ve yet to sample so far. I’ll try them when the crowds thin out in September. I have avoided driving at night into the downtown area this summer.
There are many nonprofits vying for people’s donations here all season long. Most of these involve getting dressed up, paying heavily for tickets and hopefully writing large checks after drinking wine or cocktails all evening. That’s the easy way to give money.
Then, there’s the better way to give money. That means getting involved in helping raise money for a cause. It’s even better if your children learn to participate in this endeavor. The first annual Habitat for Humanity lemonade event takes place this Saturday, Aug. 6. There will be more than 30 lemonade stands spread all over the island. Please take the time to enjoy a glass and if you’d like, give a little extra.
Children and their parents will be spending time together to help raise money for Habitat for Humanity. Having worked on the Habitat house last year, I’ve seen what a wonderful job they’re doing. By participating in this event, kids aren’t spending the day sitting inside watching TV. Instead they’ll learn about giving back, a most valuable lesson.
David Goodman’s “Goodman’s Gam” appears weekly in this space and regularly in The Inquirer and Mirror