Looking through a box in the Star attic the other day, I noticed a narrow, cloth-bound ledger that looked interesting. A handwritten note tucked inside the front cover identified it as the Montauk Lighthouse visitors’ log from August 1908 to September 1910. Whoever had left the note indicated that the entries included an “auto run” in 1908, complete with the makes of the cars.
First of all, I want to say thank you, Santa, and all your helpers for fanning out across the globe in these weeks leading up to Christmas to help keep the magic alive. It’s not easy being in so many places at once while also making your list and checking it twice. All those decked-out halls can get pretty noisy when the squeals of excited children are fueled by candy canes and sugar cookies. It’s enough to drive anyone to distraction.
The day after my mother died my brother and I drove to the house in North Haven. It was the same house my grandparents had built in 1950. It had been sold and remodeled since my parents were forced to sell it four years ago after my mother’s fall and subsequent slow decline. After that she entered into the business of dying, moving in and out of institutional care. My mother never saw her home again.
President Trump again made it plain this week, in moving to drastically cut the size of two protected areas of public land in the West, that he favors exploitation over historical and environmental protection, and over the survival of Native American cultural sites and artifacts. In Utah, he announced Monday that the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments would be reduced to a fraction of their former selves. This is a sad day for those who care about open spaces and America’s wild lands.
Although voters approved a referendum last year that allowed up to 20 percent of the East Hampton Town Community Preservation Fund’s annual income to be used for water quality projects, there have been few indications of how that might work in real life. Now, as the managers of the Whalebone Village affordable housing development in East Hampton have asked the town for up to $376,000 to upgrade its septic system, the lack of guidelines is apparent.
By now, we have all had our flu shots, right? Well, not exactly. According to federal government statistics, less than half the adults who should get the influenza vaccine each year actually do so. For children, the rate is better, but far from ideal.