Monday, August 12, 2013

Postcard from Martha's Vineyard

We made a quick trip to Martha's Vineyard on Friday to visit some old friends who summer there. We hadn't been there in more than a decade, and we can't wait to go back for a longer stay.

We caught the ferry from Woods Hole with only seconds to spare — we'd arrived a good 45 minutes early, but then we discovered that the parking lot was 6 miles away from the ferry landing... and there was traffic... and then we had to wait for the shuttle bus to fill up and the driver to stop chatting... and then we hit more traffic on the way back to the ferry landing... and then we had to line up to buy tickets. But somehow we still made it.

We shared our grilled cheese and chicken salad sandwiches at Café Moxie in Vineyard Haven. Their fries are spectacular, seasoned with rosemary and lemon salt. We had ice cream at Mad Martha's, and took a couple of strolls around town between rainstorms.

Finally, a church with priorities that match mine. I'll worship lobster rolls any time.

Vineyard Haven is full of little boutiques, specializing in casual but expensive local designers. I went into a shop that had a sister shop on Newbury Street in the '80s and '90s. Back then, I'd splurged on a summer dress designed and sewn by the owner. The fabric was soft damask with a pink, green, and tan peony print. It was tea length and sleeveless, with a wide V-neckline, a full skirt, and pale-pink buttons down the back. I loved wearing it until I began lifting weights, which built up my shoulders. Then the dress became painfully tight.

On Friday, I found the very same dress, in different fabrics, of course. I tried it on — quite the blast from the past. It was much too large, although I am larger than I used to be, too. The designer said she cuts her dresses bigger now, "since we're all bigger!"She remembered the beautiful fabric of my old dress, and wished she still had some. She said she could make a dress to fit me and wrote some tailoring notes to herself in case I decide I want one. My choices now are black-and-white polka dots or florals.

I'm intrigued... but not sure. Do I want the same dress I wore half a lifetime ago? It's a classic design but it seems like a bad move, somehow. Am I still the same person with the same style?  Not really, although I still have muscles and a penchant for V-necklines and long skirts, for better or worse. The dress is also very expensive, just as it was in the old days.

I think I'll see if I can locate my old dress, which must be buried in some relative's attic.... I won't be able to fit into it, but I might be content just to see it.

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