the lawyer writer

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Monday, June 13, 2005

Back from the Vineyard

Well, back from Martha's Vineyard. Had a lovely time, even though I still haven't been able to figure out why it's called Martha's Vineyard. Any idea?

The Kennedys were very nice hosts. Of course, we had to get away, since we couldn't hang out with them the WHOLE time, that would just become dull. Especially because the Vanderbilts were calling for tea and getting a bit jealous that we weren't going out on their yacht. And I really wanted to see the Carnegie-Mellons, but the Kennedys were rather possessive of our time. I mean, really-- how many Jackie O stories can you listen to? But they were such lovely people and we'd be happy to summer with them again--if they can fix that tennis court. Up at the Vineyard without tennis? Never!

Actually, it was more of a chair-breaking, screen-door falling, bug-zapping, cartwheeling, poker-playing, poker-losing, excessive-drinking, somewhat-smoking, corn-grilling, beach-laying, sea-breezing kind of weekend. I brought work, which stayed in my suitcase the whole time. Furthermore, I have to face the fact that I have become Very New York, since I jumped every time a bug flew by or crawled on the porch. And I think Nature gives me allergies, though it really could have been a host of other things. But I really am a city girl, which is fine by me. It does go against my self-advertisement as an easygoing girl who can rough it if necessary, but I think I'm still that girl, as long as there are no more inchworms.

Martha's Vineyard can indeed boast a high level of quaintness--especially our house, if by "quaint" you mean "decrepit, with accompanying faux-Victorian details." It was, however, an awesome deal, and the perfect vacation--lying on the beach, hanging out at the beach bars, eating spray cheese from a can (surprisingly, not my idea, but I took to it rather quickly), playing cutthroat poker until the wee hours. I am now what my mother would call a "kari kooti" which means "little black dirty animal" which is my mother's rather endearing way of noting that I have a tan. All I expect to see in the pictures is my teeth and the whites of my eyes.

And as for that four-ace hand that beat my to-the-jack straight--well, you know who you are, and I hope you're feeling lousy about taking this poor writer's money.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The first people on Martha’s Vineyard were Indians of the Wampanoag tribe, who probably were able to walk here before the sea filled the lowest valleys and plains. Wampanoags still make up a large part of the town of Aquinnah, known as Gay Head until the spring of 1998.

The modern history of Martha’s Vineyard begins with the arrival of a single English ship in 1602, commanded by Bartholomew Gosnold, who built the first colonial settlement in New England on Cuttyhunk, a small island just across Vineyard Sound. Gosnold crossed the sound to visit the Vineyard many times during the single summer season he remained in the New World; the Indians called it Noepe, meaning “Amid the Waters” – a reference to the two distinct and often conflicting tidal currents the native people saw at work around the Island. Gosnold named it “Martha’s Vineyard,” probably after his infant daughter and because the Island was covered by wild grapes.

11:23 AM  
Blogger the lawyerwriter said...

oh, anonymous, you are so wise, and yet I do not know who you are...but I will refer all my New England questions to you from now on...

1:32 PM  
Anonymous said...

Gosnold's naming of the island after his oldest daughter Martha enraged his younger daughter Nancy (or Nan as she was known). Nancy demanded her own island, forcing Gosnold to search extensively along the coast from Mashpee all the way to Provincetown for another island with equal wild grapes to Martha's Vineyard. Upon his return, Gosnold told his younger daughter that all he could find was a sandy wind swept island farther out to sea, and Nan-took- it. (This joke told to me by my father when I was 8... historical accuracy not guaranteed)

Other vineyard trivia:

Steven Spielberg shot Jaws on location in Martha's Vineyard (or "Amity Island" as the film called it). Lots of recognizeable shots from Edgartown, the sandy beach inlet, and the Chappaquidick Ferry. Better viewed AFTER a visit than before, if you want to swim.

John Jr. and Caroline Kennedy were killed when their plane went down at night en route to Martha's Vineyard.

The Carousel in Oak Bluffs is the oldest operating Carousel in the country, dating to the late 19th century.

1:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And on a lighter note than pure free trial offer , check out the funniest trial transcript ever! If it's not serious enough of a topic, well, just pretend it's the Brit's version of free trial offer !

12:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

RE: MV trivia correction for Qksail - It was not Caroline Kennedy (she is a lawyer in NYC I believe?) but John's wife and sister-in-law(the Bisset sisters whom I believe were twins) from Greenwich, Ct.

4:26 PM  

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