Thursday, June 12, 2008

For the love of Peaks

I do love this rock. It's not just the raw beauty, the stinky lowtides, and the knarly trees. It's the salty people!
For the (almost) four years I lived in San Francisco, I didn't get beyond waving to my immediate neighbors, except for
Frank, who shared his Giants season tickets with me, on occasion.

But here on Peaks, there is constant contact with community. You can't actually avoid it. Marty and I thought we would have so much time, living on a bucolic island: I would be hooking rugs while he banged together birdhouses from driftwood.
Think again!

Instead, we're part of the school, the Fifth Maine Museum, the Children's Workshop, the Island Times, the Gem Gallery, the volunteer taxi, the Girl Scouts. Hmm, now that I consider it, when is there time to work??

We get to know folks we might not have met in other stratified places, where orbits don't intersect like they do here: potlucks, the ferry portal, Peaksfest. We met Fran Houston many years ago when she wandered into our house during an Art Walk. Now, she has her own show at the Gem. Marty designed this announcement:

Fran has been interviewing and collecting oral histories of various island residents with rich histories on Peaks. She hopes to publish a book of her photographs and islanders' stories. The lovely lady on the bottom left, Anne Romanyshyn, talked to me on the phone, even before we moved here. The realtor gave us her number, since she used to own what is now our house.
She very graciously chatted about what she loved about this place, so my mind was intent on "so, why did you sell?"
Why, they'd found a pretty piece of land on the backshore. A better view overlooking the ocean and a field of lupines!
We are honored to be the current stewards of this old place.....

Anyway, Fran was glowing on opening night.

I had to go back the next day, when it wasn't so packed, in order to read the texts. It was sweet to learn new things about all these familiar faces. We stay in the present but it takes Fran to ask them about their histories. Congratulations, Fran!
And thanks to the islanders who shared wisdom, humor, and heritage.

The front room exhibit is jammed with members' work. Love this big oil by Jeanne O'Toole Hayman to the right of my pastel,
Wish I May.

Come see the show: 62 Island Avenue, up the hill from the ferry and take a left. Hours can be spotty, though.
Islanders are busy, being salty, mostly.

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