December 10, 2018

Residents Hear Initial Ideas on Halls Rd. Improvement from Yale Urban Design Team, Reactions Mixed: What do YOU Think?

Old Lyme First Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder addresses the audience in the Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School cafeteria during the Thursday evening meeting.

“Members of the Halls Road Improvements Committee and the Yale Urban Design Workshop met with the public Thursday evening to discuss the creation of a master development plan envisioning future improvements to Halls Road, the town’s main commercial district.

The committee, after holding a similar public discussion earlier this year, has been working …”

These are the opening sentences of an article by Mary Biekert titled Improvements to Old Lyme’s Halls Road discussed in public forum and published today on theday.com.  Read the full article at this link.

Editor’s Note: In pursuit of our mission of serving our community … let us know what YOU think of the Halls Rd. Improvement proposals?  Either post a comment with your thoughts here on LymeLine.com or send us an email with them to editor@lymeline.com

We’ll publish a summary of the comments we receive, but only naming the writer if you have given specific permission.

Thank you — we look forward to hearing from you!

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Talking Transportation: Trucker Shortage Takes Its Toll

What does the future hold for the trucks on our highways? Photo by Rhys Moult on Unsplash

As if crumbling bridges and pot-holed highways weren’t enough to worry about, now America’s transportation network is facing a new crisis:  a shortage of truck drivers.

According to the American Trucking Association (ATA), trucks carry more than 70 percent of all domestic freight, bringing in $719 billion in revenue.  It’s trucks, not trains, that deliver our Amazon purchases and fill the shelves of our favorite big box stores for the holidays. So while we hate to drive behind them on our highways, we love what trucks deliver.

But now, of the existing half-million truck drivers in the US, demographics are taking their toll as more and more retire each year, leaving those jobs unfilled. The ATA estimates the industry needs 51,000 new truck drivers.  And new candidates are not stepping forward.

Why?  Well, the ATA says Gen Z’ers don’t like the lifestyle.  They don’t want to spend long, lonely days or weeks doing long-hauls, eating bad food and sleeping in their rigs.  Even money, like $50,000 signing bonuses, isn’t attracting them.

The average trucker makes $59,000 and drivers for private fleets can make $86,000. But lengthy, expensive training courses present a roadblock to immediate recruitment.  And newly-mandated technology tracking drivers’ time on the road is exacerbating the problem.

Drivers are only supposed to drive 11 hours of every 14 hours a day, but many used to fudge their paper log-book records because they got paid by the mile.  Since last December, electronic logging has been the law, so the safety rules are impossible to circumvent.  Of course, nobody wants tired drivers on the road, but in the cause of safety, truckers are losing efficiency.

Where will the industry find new drivers?  Well, women still only represent about 6 percent of all drivers.  And minorities have seen their numbers increase 12 percent in the past year.  And the industry is also seeking a reduction in the minimum driving age from 21 to 18.

What’s this all mean to us as consumers?  Higher costs.

Amazon saw a 38 percent increase in shipping costs in the first quarter, forcing it to raise its (unlimited free-shipping) Amazon Prime membership fee from $99 to $119 a year.  Across the industry spectrum, shipping rates are rising.

But the real solution will probably be self-driving trucks.

That’s why big companies like Waymo (owned by Google), Tesla and Uber, as well as truck-builders like Freightliner and Volvo are investing heavily in the autonomous technology.

Not that we’ll be seeing driverless trucks on Connecticut interstates anytime soon.  There’s probably too much congestion to make them practical.  But there are vast stretches of interstates in “fly over country” out west where self-driving trucks make perfect sense, delivering truckloads of products to automated warehouses where robots will unload them.

Automating trucking may be good for the industry but it certainly doesn’t help with recruitment.  Who wants to sign on for a career knowing full well they may be replaced by a robot?

Sociologist and 13-year trucker Steve Viscelli says the solution is in changing the system:  paying truckers for actual hours on the road (not just mileage), including those times when truckers must waste hours or days waiting for a new load.

Whatever the solution, it’s clear who’ll end up paying:  consumers.

Posted with permission of Hearst CT Media.

Jim Cameron

About the author: Jim Cameron is founder of The Commuter Action Group, and a member of the Darien RTM.  The opinions expressed in this column are only his own.  You can reach him at CommuterActionGroup@gmail.com

For a full collection of  “Talking Transportation” columns, visit www.talkingtransportation.blogspot.com

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Letter to the Editor: Thoughts, Concerns, Suggestions on Halls Rd. Improvement Plan

To the Editor:

Christina and I attended both public meetings hosted by Old Lyme’s Halls Road Improvements Committee, and conducted by members of the Yale Urban Design Workshop. Yale presented the Committee’s vision statement and several conceptual renderings of what fully realizing that vision might yield. The article in the New London Day accurately summarized the vision.

The audience was skeptical of the immense breadth and scope of that vision; – requiring twenty- five or more years to complete.  Several concerns were raised about cost and the impact on taxes.

We left with a few thoughts and concerns. It was not apparent to us that current Halls Road business owners and the professionals occupying office space had participated to any extent in developing that vision. It is absolutely important to get their buy-in. Essex Bank did state that any of their future development would take Old Lyme’s plan into consideration.

We found Alan Plattus’ presentation to be a bit glib. This is important stuff, and some of the vision could be lost in presenter style. Also, know the names of our local landmarks, especially if they factor into the plan. (i.e. it’s the “Bow Bridge” that used to cross the Lieutenant River). But, after all; they’re Yale, not Harvard.

Our suggestion: parse the plan into achievable shorter- range projects that will yield some early successes. Start with the hiking/biking paths along the Lieutenant River, rebuild the foot bridge, and create the new Halls Road village green.

Sincerely, 

Thomas D. Gotowka,
Old Lyme.

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SECWAC Hosts Local Independent Expert to Present, “Cuba, the Conflicted Isle,” Tuesday

Rob Hernandez will give a presentation on Cuba at the next SECWAC meeting.

The Southeast Connecticut World Affairs Council (SECWAC) hosts Rob Hernandez to speak on ‘Cuba, the Conflicted Isle: can it reconcile its past while creating a new future?’ at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 11, at the Old Lyme Country Club, 40 McCurdy Road, Old Lyme, CT.

Hernandez, an international business consultant and lecturer on global issues for the National Geographic, universities and corporations, will discuss the current status of Cuba in the context of its historical relationship with the United States. Specifically, he will recount the long and often tortured history of U.S.-Cuba relations, describe the reality on the ground today, and discuss possible solutions to the five decades of seemingly irreconcilable differences between the two neighbors.

Born in the U.S. but raised in Spain and Cuba—and Essex, Hernandez has worked extensively around the world for more than 40 years. An ecologist by education, he spent his early career doing field research and documenting through film and photography many of the world’s more remote places, work that has appeared in many leading global publications.

As part of those endeavors, he spent a year in Africa filming a television special on lions and, in his early twenties, spent two years circumnavigating the Pacific and Indian Oceans in a 29 ft. sailboat.  Since then he has continued to lead numerous expeditions to Africa, the Arctic and Antarctic, Southeast Asia, New Guinea, and South America, among others.

This led to a 30-year career at the National Geographic Society (NGS) where he served in numerous capacities, including senior editor of the National Geographic magazine, head of Strategic Planning, and later as Senior Vice President, founder and head of the Society’s International Publishing Division.  In that role, he established NGS offices in more than 35 countries and published books, magazines, maps, DVDs, websites and a broad range of other digital media in over 40 languages.  Totally committed to NGS’s non-profit missions, he was also heavily involved in the scientific, educational, and conservation initiatives of the organization.

Most recently, he completed his career at the Walt Disney Co. where he ran Disney’s Magazine Publishing Worldwide Co. producing more than 400 local-language magazine titles and other publications for sale throughout the globe.

Now semi-retired, he lives in Essex and works as an international business consultant and lecturer on global issues for the National Geographic, universities, and corporations. He has traveled to Cuba often in the last three decades and looks forward to sharing with his insights about this enigmatic island.

Immediately following the presentation, SECWAC meeting attendees have the option for $35 to attend a dinner with the speaker at the Old Lyme Country Club. Dinner reservations are required by Thursday, Dec. 6, at 860-912-5718.

A reception will begin at 5:30 p.m., with the main event beginning at 6 p.m. The presentation is a part of the SECWAC 2018-2019 Speaker Series. For non-members, tickets ($20) may be purchased at the door; ticket cost can subsequently be applied towards a SECWAC membership. Attendance is free for SECWAC members (and their guests). Membership September 2018 through June 2019 is $75; $25 for young professionals under 35; free for area college and high school students.

SECWAC is a regional, nonprofit, membership organization affiliated with the World Affairs Councils of America (WACA). The organization dates back to 1999, and has continued to arrange eight to 10 Speaker Series meetings annually, between September and June. The meetings range in foreign affairs topics, and are hosted at venues along the I-95 corridor, welcoming members and guests from Stonington to Old Saybrook, and beyond.

SECWAC’s mission is “to foster an understanding of issues of foreign policy and international affairs through study, debate, and educational programming.” It provides a forum for nonpartisan, non-advocacy dialogue between members and speakers, who can be U.S. policy makers, educators, authors, and other experts on foreign relations. Learn more at http://secwac.org.

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Letter from Paris: Riots Fuel ‘Yellow Vest’ Rebellion Against Macron’s Reforms, Stir Memories of May ’68

Editor’s Note: We are watching events in Paris today with deep dismay. Nicole Logan’s topical column gives her opinion on the background to the tense situation unfolding there.

Nicole Prévost Logan

France is in a tailspin.  

The crisis started with the fury against the seven-cent tax hike on diesel fuel. The movement of the gilets jaunes (yellow vests) spread like wildfire through the social networks as they blocked the roads all over France. For three weeks in November, the demonstrators congregated in Paris each Saturday. Their confrontation with the police culminated in scenes of violence, which shocked the world: Place de l’Etoile obliterated by the smoke of tear gas, graffiti desecrating the Arc de Triomphe, and a policeman being attacked near the monument.  

Riots have been occurring in cities all over France but are centered on Paris. File photo by Randy Colas on Unsplash

Since the Champs Elysées and the Place de la Concorde were cordoned off by the police, the casseurs (hooligans) spilled over Avenue Kleber and Avenue de la Grande Armee, where they looted shops and set fire to six buildings. Hundreds were wounded and 412 demonstrators arrested. By the day’s end, a picture of desolation remained with the smoldering remains of 35 cars and streets littered with whatever was used as a projectile by the radicalized mob.

The tension is mounting. The government seems unable to contain it. The gilets jaunes are widening their demands to lower all taxes, raise salaries and retirements as well as the dissolution of the National Assembly. At this point they will not stop short of the resignation of Macron. 

It is an unprecedented, unstructured popular anger directly aimed at the president.  The opposition parties – with much glee – are surfing on this tsunami.

The government is making concessions to meet people’s demands. Unfortunately these concessions always arrive too late. The more the government concedes, the more the gilets jaunes demand, apparently comforted by their success.  On Dec. 4th, Prime Minister Edward Philippe announced a six-month freeze on fuel and utility taxes followed by their cancellation the same evening. And the price tag of this measure? Four billion euros. This was the first admission of defeat by the Macron team – a measure very hard to swallow since it went against its own environmental principles. 

What are the causes of this crisis? Mistakes made by a president attempting to reform the country from the bottom up? Ungovernable French people? Perhaps a combination of both.

During the first 16 months of his mandate, Macron undertook structural reforms  to turn France into a modern and competitive country. These reforms dealt with political institutions, the labor code,  the impressive — but somewhat antiquated — railroad system or  SNCF (Societé Nationale des Chemins de Fer), crowded universities  by abolishing a chaotic and ridiculous entrance selection by lottery. 

But French people do not like changes and are attached to their privileges, tax niches and social benefits acquired over decades. An attempt at reforming the system was bound to face an uphill battle .

All these reforms were part of a general plan — a vision — which the president had placed at the core of his electoral campaign and on the basis of which he had been elected. in 2017. He gave himself five years to achieve his goals. 

Unfortunately for him the people wanted immediate results. He wanted to raise the French economy and society from the bottom up and encourage the active population. This was different from a “trickle down” process, but was not perceived as such by the French.  Soon the label,”President of the Rich,” was firmly attached to him.

Macron’s strategy was to consult with trade unions, elected local officials or business people at the Elysée Palace before making any decisions.

Apparently tetanized by the fast pace of the president’s method, the population seemed at first to accept the reforms. But gradually, overwhelmed by the sheer number of new regulations, taxes, or reforms facing them them every morning, its discontent started as an underground rumble until it finally exploded. The last drop was the additional tax on diesel. 

Overall, the French population is justified in its revolt against an unbearable tax burden. France is the world number one champion of taxes with 48 percent of its Gross Domestic Product coming from tax revenues versus 40 percent in the other European countries and less than 30 percent in the US.  One of the buzz expressions among the gilets jaunes is “ras le bol” (meaning “we are totally fed up.”) There are hundreds of hidden taxes in France. For example, did you know that here, one has to pay a tax on “oiseaux de companie” (pet birds)?

The French have a special craving for social justice as shown in their attitude toward the Impot de Solidarite sur la Fortune (ISF) or wealth tax. Macron had split that tax between property wealth — which he retained — and financial holdings such as stocks. In order to encourage investments — particularly on green energy — he created a “flat tax” of only 30 percent.  What he did was misunderstood by the public opinion and may be scrapped soon.    

Today Macron’s room to maneuver is very small.  Since the opposition has no leader to replace him, where is the country going?  Cohn Bendit, the hero of May 1968, the largest French uprising in the past 50 years, gave a frightening prognosis, “I see the present movement in France as a possibly the first step toward totalitarianism, headed by an illiberal despot.” 

The situation is evolving by the hour.  More demonstrations of force are already planned …

Editor’s Note: This is the opinion of Nicole Prévost Logan.

Nicole Prévost Logan

About the author: Nicole Prévost Logan divides her time between Essex and Paris, spending summers in the former and winters in the latter. She writes a regular column for us from her Paris home where her topics will include politics, economy, social unrest — mostly in France — but also in other European countries. She also covers a variety of art exhibits and the performing arts in Europe. Logan is the author of ‘Forever on the Road: A Franco-American Family’s Thirty Years in the Foreign Service,’ an autobiography of her life as the wife of an overseas diplomat, who lived in 10 foreign countries on three continents. Her experiences during her foreign service life included being in Lebanon when civil war erupted, excavating a medieval city in Moscow and spending a week under house arrest in Guinea.

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Old Lyme Town Band Plays ‘Holiday Pops Concert’ at ‘the Kate,’ Wednesday

The Old Lyme Town Band will perform their ‘Holiday Pops Concert’ at the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center, ‘The Kate,’ in Old Saybrook on Wednesday, Dec. 12, at 7 p.m.

‘The Kate’s’ program information states, “Nothing says the holidays like the Old Lyme Town Band playing some festive selections for the season.”

Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for children and available at this link.

Visit the Old Lyme Town Band’s website at this link or thekate.org for more details.

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Holiday Boutique Wednesday in Old Lyme Benefits LYSB, Other Local Youth Organizations

Wrap up your gift shopping at the Holiday Boutique on Wednesday! Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash

A Holiday Boutique will be held  Wednesday, Dec. 12, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Old Lyme Country Club, 40 McCurdy Rd., Old Lyme.

The event will benefit the Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau, Old Saybrook Youth & Family Services, and Tri-Town Youth Service Bureau.

The Holiday Boutique features 18 vendors from Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and Florida, and has something for everyone on your list.

Items for sale will include jewelry, gifts, hand bags, scarves, soaps, ties, florals and so much more.

A luncheon buffet will be available $18.  This event is open and free to all community members.

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Holiday Music, Movies and More at ‘the Kate’ in December

Lunasa and vocalist Ashley Davis will play traditional Irish holiday music, Dec. 13.

From classic holiday films to live theater, to music of many genres and family programs, there is plenty to see and enjoy at the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center (the Kate) this December!

Celebrate the season with several Christmas-themed events, including traditional Irish holiday music with Lunasa and vocalist Ashley Davis on the 13th. 

Community traditions continue with the Old Lyme Town Band’s Holiday Concert on the 12th and Cappella Cantorum’s annual Messiah Sing or Listen on the 16th. The films Home Alone and White Christmas will be shown on the 9th and 20th, respectively, on the Kate’s big screen with surround sound and an encore viewing of the Bolshoi Ballet’s stunning production of The Nutcracker takes place on the 22nd. 

Rounding out the month are performances by The Weight playing the music of The Band on the 14th; songwriter/guitarist/blueseman Chris Smither on the 15th; the John Poussette-Dart Band on the 21st; NRBQ on the 22nd; and singer-songwriter Dar Williams on the 30th. 

For information and tickets for all shows at the Kate, visit www.thekate.org or call 860-510-0453. 

The Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center is a non-profit performing arts organization located in an historic theatre/town hall on Main Street in Old Saybrook. Originally opened in 1911 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Center has been renovated with public funds from the Town of Old Saybrook and donations raised by the Trustees of the Center.

It includes a 250-seat theatre and a small museum honoring Katharine Hepburn, Old Saybrook’s most celebrated resident. As befits an organization born of such a public/private partnership, programming is eclectic, offering something for all ages and income levels on the Connecticut shore and in the lower river valley.

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Faculty Exhibition Continues Through Jan. 26 at Lyme Academy

Featured artwork in the Faculty Exhibition is by Jeremy Santiago-Horseman, Golem Processes; Lily Green (detail), oil, latex, clay, shellac, tar, straw, 2016

Work by college faculty of Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts of the University of New Haven is on view in the Chauncey Stillman Gallery in an exhibition titled, ‘Making Artists, Making Art,’ which was curated by Charlotte Gray, Ph.D., Practitioner in Residence, and Janis Mink, Ph.D., Adjunct Professor.

This exhibition is on view Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. until Jan. 26, 2019.

Admission is free to the exhibition.

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‘Light Up Old Lyme’ Continues Through the Holidays, Check Out Our Full Calendar of Events


Here is a calendar to help readers navigate all the Light Up Old Lyme holiday events that are happening in Old Lyme during the weeks leading up to the Christmas holiday.

We have also included a few events, which take place outside Old Lyme, because the hosts are Lyme-Old Lyme (LOL) Chamber of Commerce members.

The LOL Chamber pulled most of this information together and we have added a few more events of which we have been notified.

If we have missed any events, please let us know as soon as possible and we will add them promptly.

FRIDAY, NOV. 30

Community Tree Lighting hosted by the Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber of Commerce
4-4:45pm:
 outside Center School (inside if inclement weather).
Festive music by Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School Band, conducted by Carrie Wind. Community carol sing. Seasonal refreshments provided by Essex Savings Bank.

Holiday Book Sale: Preview Night with Wine Reception hosted by Phoebe’s BookCellar
4-7pm:
 Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library

Shopping, live music, and light refreshments.  Gift quality – including rare and collectible- books available for purchase in the festively-decorated Reading Room.  All BookCellar books half-price or less. All proceeds benefit the Library. Sale continues Saturday, Dec. 1, 9am-2pm.

Deck the Walls Opening Reception
5-7pm: Lyme Art Association
This annual member show features more than 200 works of art priced for holiday gift giving.  Opening Reception Friday, November 30, 5-7pm.  Gallery hours Wed- Sun, 10-5 pm, and by appointment.   $5 donation suggested.

Delights of December Holiday Pops Concert by Old Lyme Town Band
7:30pm
: Christ the King Church 
Free admission.
A second concert will be given on Sunday, Dec. 2, 2pm, at Lymes’ Senior Center, Town Woods Rd., Old Lyme.

SATURDAY, DEC. 1

Cookie Walk hosted by Child & Family Agency  
9am-12 noon: Old Lyme Town Hall.
Choose from a huge selection of beautiful, delicious, homemade cookies and other gift items. Benefits Child & Family Agency.

Pictures with Santa!  hosted by Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau.
10am-12 noon: Old Lyme Town Hall.
Meet Santa and his Elves! Free. Donations benefit LYSB.

Elephants-in-Winter Christmas Sale
9am–2pm: First Congregational Church of Old Lyme Fellowship Hall
Assorted Christmas decorations, gifts, handmade craft items, and stocking stuffers for sale. , or add just the right touch to your holiday decor.  Sale also sale includes special treasures from mission partnerships in South Dakota, Haiti and Palestine. Donations benefit Church missions.

Musical Masterworks 
5pm: First Congregational Church of Old Lyme
Program includes Schubert’s Winterreise by baritone Randall Scarlata and veteran pianist, Jeewon Park. Join Edward Arron, Artistic Director, for a pre-concert talk before the performance at 4pm.
Tickets: MusicalMasterworks.org.  or 860 434 2252.  There will be a second concert on Sunday at 3pm with a pre-concert talk at 2pm

Magic of Christmas
Nov. 23 through Jan. 6, 2019: Florence Griswold Museum
Enjoy Miss Florence’s Artist TreesChristmastime Teas, special events and hands-on crafts for all ages, and wonderful items in The Shop.

SUNDAY, DEC. 2

Cappella Cantorum Christmas Concert
3pm: John Winthrop Middle School, Deep River
Cappella’s Masterworks Chorus will perform Puccini’s “Messa Di Gloria” and Saint-Saens’ “Christmas Oratorio.” Featured soloists will be soprano Abigail Paschke, tenor Brian Cheney and baritone Paul Fletcher. Simon Holt will direct the chorus and professional orchestra. Tickets are $30 purchased in advance, $35 at the door. Tickets at www.CappellaCantorum.org or 860-526-1038.

MONDAY, DEC. 3

Annual Community Wreath Making Event hosted by Duck River Garden Club  
6:30pm: Rogers Lake Community Center
Bring gloves, clippers, and clipped evergreens if you have some! Our community is invited to join Club members and create festive wreaths for town buildings.

FRIDAY, DEC. 7

Student Holiday Art Sale Opening Reception
5-7 pm: Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts of the Univ. of New Haven, Sill House Gallery
Art Sale on View: Dec. 7 – 14.

Con Brio Choral Society
8pm: Christ the King Church
Danielle Munsell Howard, Soprano; Louise Fauteux, Soprano; Allison Messier, Mezzo Soprano, and the Con Brio Festival Orchestra, conducted by Dr. Stephen Bruce. Open seating, unreserved. Tickets at conbrio.org or 860.526.5399, or at the door.
There will be a second performance on Sunday, Dec. 9, at 3pm. 

SATURDAY, DEC. 8

2018 Homes for the Holidays Tour hosted by the Old Lyme Children’s Learning Center
11am-3pm. Along Lyme Street.
Self-guided tour of beautifully decorated village homes & businesses.
Ticket stubs valid for free admission to Florence Griswold Museum Magic of Christmas that day.  The Lyme Art Association’s Deck the Walls exhibit will also be open. Lyme-Old Lyme High School’s Select Singers perform at the OL Historical Society; Old Lyme Town Hall hosts a Holiday Boutique from 10am-4pm, featuring beautiful, hand-crafted items. Tickets $25 in advance, or $30 at the door. Call 860-434-1728, Ext. 1 and leave a message or purchase through Eventbrite @ olclchometour2018.eventbrite.com

Santa’s Trunk Show
9am-4pm: APC Driving GalleryOld Lyme Shopping Center.
Car art, automobilia and collectibles for the holidays.

The Nutcracker by Eastern Connecticut Ballet,
1:30 and 7pm:  at The Garde Arts Center, New London. Tickets at 860-444-7373 ext.1 or gardearts.org.
There will be a third performance on Sunday, Dec. 9, at 1:30pm

Holiday Sale of Old Lyme Historical Society Books & Gifts
Sat., Dec. 8 (am): at Old Lyme Post Office
Books, calendars, household items and other Society merchandise.
On Dec. 8,  OLHSI’s 55 Lyme Street headquarters will be part of the OLCLC Home for the Holidays tour.
Book and gift sales will also be held in the morning and afternoon on both Saturdays, Dec. 15 & 22.

SUNDAY, DEC.. 9, TUESDAY, DEC.. 11 & TUESDAY, DEC.. 18

Holiday Gift Workshops hosted by LYSB
Gingerbread House Family Workshop  12/9, 12:30-2pm. An annual tradition Fee: $15/house
Festive Felt Stocking12/11, 4-6pm and Felt Holiday Ornaments, 12/18, 4-6 pm.  Fee: $25.  Registration required.

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‘Deck the Walls’ on View at Lyme Art Association Through Jan. 4

‘Chandelier’ by Karen Israel  is one of the signature paintings of the exhibition.

The Lyme Art Association’s festive art exhibition, the annual Deck the Walls holiday show, is on view through Jan. 4, 2019. More than 200 original works of art by member artists will be on display and priced to sell as holiday gifts.

‘Snowy Perch’ (oil) by Melanie Watrous is the signature work in this year’s ‘Deck The Walls’ exhibition.

The opening reception on Friday, Nov. 30, from 5-7 pm, is free to the public and will feature live music. All painting purchases from 5 p.m. on Nov. 30 through 5 p.m. Dec. 1, will be tax-free.

“For Deck the Walls, the Lyme Art Association features a wide variety of appealing subjects at affordable prices that are great for holiday shopping. We hope to help solve those gift giving dilemmas – a beautiful piece of artwork is always appreciated!” says Jocelyn Zallinger, Gallery Manager.

The Lyme Art Association is open Wednesday through Sunday, from 10 am – 5 pm, and by appointment.

The Association is located at 90 Lyme Street in Old Lyme, at the corner of Halls Road.

Call (860) 434-7802 for more information, or visit www.lymeartassociation.org.

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LYSB Launches Holiday Giving Program

The holiday season is a time for caring and sharing, but can be especially difficult for families facing extreme financial challenges.

It is the generosity of individuals and organizations that makes our community a special place.  Donors can “adopt” a family or make a general contribution toward the program.

If you would like to help struggling neighbors in our community during the holidays, contact Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau at 860-434-7208.

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CT Repertory Theatre Presents “A Civil War Christmas: An American Musical Celebration” Through Dec. 9

Christmas, 1864. With the nation at war, it is not a silent night. All is not peaceful or bright. On one side of the Potomac, an escaped slave hurries her daughter toward the capital and freedom. On the other side, a young Confederate runs away from home with hopes of joining the fight. In the capital, Mrs. Lincoln is in desperate need of the perfect gift for her husband Abe.

Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paula Vogel creates a historical and musical masterpiece in “A Civil War Christmas,” one that is uniquely American. In the shadow of our own partisan divide, can the nation put aside its differences and share in the hope and generosity the Christmas season has to offer, and the promise of Christmas future?

Connecticut Repertory Theatre (CRT) continues its 2018-19 season with “A Civil War Christmas: An American Musical Celebration.”  in the Harriet S. Jorgenson Theatre on the UConn campus at Storrs from Nov. 29 through Dec. 9.

The ensemble cast is led by Tony Award-nominee Forrest McClendon.  McClendon is a UConn alum and grew up in Connecticut.  He last appeared onstage at Connecticut Repertory Theatre in “Peter and the Starcatcher” in 2016.

McClendon is a Tony Award nominee for his Broadway debut as Mr. Tambo in “The Scottsboro Boys,” first created at the Vineyard and Guthrie Theaters. Post-Broadway, he received a Barrymore Award for his reprisal of the role at the Philadelphia Theatre Company. He also starred in the London premiere at the Garrick Theatre, which received the London Evening Standard Award for Best Musical, and he is featured on the Off-Broadway and West End recordings.

Forrest received his Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from UConn, and made his professional debut as the Padre in “Man of La Mancha” at Nutmeg Summer Theatre.

Tabatha Gayle is an AEA Jamaican-Asian performer, multidisciplinary creative, and activist based in NYC. A 2018 BFA Acting graduate of the University of Connecticut, she performed with the Connecticut Repertory Theater in productions such as ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ (Gwendolen), ‘Shrek The Musical’ (Humpty Dumpty/Soloist), and ‘Our Country’s Good’ (Mary Brenham).

Director Elizabeth Van Dyke serves as the Producing Artistic Director of Going to the River and The River Crosses River: A Festival of Short Plays by Women of Color.  These programs support and champion the work of African-American Female playwrights and women playwrights of color. The artistic home-base for these programs is the Ensemble Studio Theatre in New York City.

The creative team includes: Elizabeth VanDyke (Director), Anna Brewster (Scenic Design), Matt Lazarus (Lighting Design), Corey Brittain (Costume Design), Mitchell Prescott (Sound Design), Lizz Mangan (Dramaturg), Paul Feyer (Music Director), Caitlin O’Rourke (Production Stage Manager).

Evening performances start at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and at 8 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Select matinee performances start at 2 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. Single tickets are available now. Single tickets range from $36 to $40. All student tickets are only $10 and there is always a senior discount.

Children must be at least 4 years old to attend CRT productions. For additional ticket information or to charge tickets by phone, call 860.486.2113. All sales are final; no refunds. Play selections and performance dates are subject to change.

Call the box office at 860.486.2113 for tickets and additional information or visit www.crt.uconn.edu for specific show dates and times because performance schedules vary and are subject to change.

CRT is the professional producing arm of the Department of Dramatic Arts at the University of Connecticut, Storrs. CRT productions are directed, designed by, and cast with visiting professional artists, including Equity actors, faculty members, and the department’s most advanced student artists. The synergy between professional and advanced student artists creates extraordinary theatre and a unique learning environment.

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The Movie Man: ‘The Ballad of Buster Scruggs’ Delights, Challenges

It seems that the newest trend in film is to go from first screenings at movie theaters to permanent availability on Netflix, following the trend that TV shows have started.

Originally, it was seen with popular, but not so artistically influential, stars such as Adam Sandler. But now iconic brothers Joel and Ethan Coen have followed through on this trend with the release of The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, a Western collection of vignettes ranging from bank robberies to covered-wagon journeys.

I finished the film as I expected I would: scratching my head, pondering the meaning of every story in the anthology. But this is the case with nearly every film by the Coen brothers. This happened when I finished No Country for Old Men, A Serious Man, and even The Big Lebowski.

But have no fear, in our digital age, you will not be perpetually stumped. With the assistance of Google, one can find a medium that can help you understand the artistic, and often spiritual, meanings of these films.

But make no mistake: you will enjoy Buster Scruggs. This will not be ranked as one of the Coen’s most memorable and definitive films, but you will be entertained.

They’re back at it with their quirky humor and folksy manner of storytelling that is present in every film (even ones as dark as No Country, upon further reflection.) You will also see tributes to other iconic directors, such as Stanley Kubrick (through their amazing landscape shots that help reinforce the environment of the story), and Spaghetti Western legend Sergio Leone (via silence, creating a build-up of suspense) — and this is more than fitting, being a Western movie.

For most readers, it will be quite easy to screen Buster Scruggs on finishing this review. Simply open a new tab in your internet explorer and log in to your Netflix account.

For everyone else, you will have to go through the painstaking process of pulling out your credit card and paying a whopping $8 to $14 to have thousands of videos at your disposal. It is a convenient way to watch movies now, but I believe it takes the joy out of the occasion of going to the movies … and I hope to write about this in the future.

‘Til next time, this is the Movie Man signing out …

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Lyme-Old Lyme High School, Middle School Announce Q1 Honor Rolls

Lyme-Old Lyme High School  Honor Roll    Quarter 1    2018-19

High Honors

Grade 12: Teresa Allan, Kendall Antoniac, Kathryn Atkinson, Jacqueline Barry, Casey Blue, Mackenzie Blue, Gary Bocian, Claire Britton, Cassandra Burrows, Ann Cote, Thomas Creagan, Noah Crolius, Emma Danes, Britney DeRoehn, Corey Drummond, Olin Frederiks, Zachary Gidius, Emily Grenier, Kylie Hall, Colin Hallahan, Sarah Hayward, Haley Heath, Kate Hickie, Liam Holloway, Aoife Hufford, Mya Johnson, Jess Kegley, Ciara Klimaszewski, Sophie Kyle, John Manthous, Brynn McGlinchey, Hannah Morrison, Leah Neithamer, Emily O’Brien, Jacob Olsen, Katherine Reid, Nicholas Roth, Noah Rumm, Kellie Sablone, Caroline Sagristano, Anna Sather, Justin Shaw, Penelope Small, Eli St.Germain, Emily Tan, Caroline Wallace, Colleen Walsh, Alexander Williams

Grade 11: Audrey Berry, Faith Caulkins, Rory Cavicke, Emilia Cheesman, Elizabeth Cravinho, Isabel Dean-Frazier, Arianna DelMastro, Maria Denya, Raymond Doll, Samuel Dushin, Theodore Enoch, Araselys Farrell, Nicholas Fava, Tanner Griffin, Sophia Griswold, Kamber Hamou, Lauren Huck, Jeffy Joshy, Renate Kuhn, Rachael Larson, Brenna Lewis, Jacqueline Malizia, Melissa Mauro, Thomas McCarthy, Ryan McTigue, Chandler Munson, Kyle Myers, Samantha Olson, Sofia Pecher-Kohout, Carter Popkin, Jared Ritchie, Jane Scheiber, Brady Sheffield, Garrett Smith, Emily Speckhals, Evan St.Louis, Olivia Stack, Haley Stevens, Philip Sweeney, Olivia Tetreault, Ryan Tetreault, Lydia Tinnerello, Kiera Ulmer, Megan VanSteenbergen, Theodore Wayland, Trevor Wells, Anna Williams, Maggie Wisner, Conner Wyman, Katherine Zelmanow

Grade 10: Sophia Arnold, Juliette Atkinson, Rachel Barretta, Ava Berry, Emma Boardman, Sadie Bowman, Kyuss Buono, Kate Cheney, John Cox, Megan Cravinho, George Danes, Bianca Dasilva, Emily DeRoehn, Corah Engdall, Leslie Farrell, Sadie Frankel, Fiona Frederiks, Lillian Grethel, Catharine Harrison, Isabella Hine, Regan Kaye, Paige Kolesnik, Grace Lathrop, Owen Macadam, Mackenzie Machnik, Elle McAraw, Emma McCulloch, Emma Meekhoff, Marina Melluzzo, Riley Nelson, Sophia Ortoleva, Connie Pan, Olivia Papanier, Anwyn Paynter, Lauren Pitt, Ezra Pyle, Ethan Rivera, Hayden Saunders, Tait Sawden, Jesper Silberberg, Tessa St.Germain, Jake Stewart, Lian Thompson, Angus Tresnan, Lauren Wallace, Kelly Walsh, Alison Ward, Ellery Zrenda

Grade 9: John Almy, Grace Arnold, Hannah Britt, Mackenzie Bussolotti, Evan Clark, Ryan Clark, Anne Colangelo, John Conley, Grace Coverdale, James Creagan, Caroline Crolius, Elias D’Onofrio, Elise DeBernardo, Elizabeth Duddy, Eleanor Dushin, Liam Fallon, Victoria Gage, Samantha Geshel, Aiden Goiangos, Andrew Hedberg, Madison Hubbard, Fiona Hufford, Julia Johnston, Nevin Joshy, Kian Kardestuncer, Cora Kern, Michael Klier, Felse Kyle, William Larson, Alex Lee, Reese Maguire, Abigail Manthous, Langley Marshall, Grace McAdams, Jacob Meyers, Samuel Mullaney, Elle Myers, Brendan O’Brien, Michael O’Donnell, Bella Orlando, Adeline Riccio, Margaret Rommel, Frank Sablone, Olivia Schaedler, Calvin Scheiber, Abigail Sicuranza, McLean Signora, Matthew Snyder, Abby Speckhals, Meghan Speers, Drew St.Louis, Nikolai Stephens-Zumbaum, Victoria Stout, Maverick Swaney, Olivia Turtoro, John Videll, Aidan Ward, Melanie Warren, Ellie Wells, Mary Wholean, Avery Wyman

Honors

Grade 12: Catherine Battalino, Lauren Birk, Paige Britton, Jocelyn Campbell, Liam Clark, John Coughlin, Lily Cox, Jacob Curtis, Grace Edwards, Marlena Elmoznino, Dylan Hettick-Harlow, Riley Jacobson, Warren Jones, Andrea Kathe, Jillian Kus, Henry Lahm, Elyza Learned, Joshua Liefeld, Peter Macadam, Lilah McAndrew, Danielle McCarthy, Sydney Ogden, Thomas Pennie, Eaven Rivera, James Rollins, Sadie Rubitski, Olivia Rugg, Robert Sedlatschek, Carson Swope, Adam Syed, Ethan Tracano

Grade 11: Alexandra Alpha, Anabella Arias, Emily Balocca, Emma Bass, Jean-Luc Bolduc, Chloe Cahill, Madison Cann, Ethan Carrion, Sarah Conley, Emily Evers, Jada Fuentes, Katherine Funaro, Lucy Gilbert, Grace Hanrahan, Quinn Hickie, Connor Hogan, Parker Hubbard, Daniel Kendall, Caroline King, Dylan Mulligan, Jenna Porter, Chase Reneson, Andre Salkin, Taylor Sedlatschek, Colby Sides, Summer Siefken, Taylor Thompson, Sydney Trowbridge, Jackson Warren, Katelyn Wells

Grade 10: Paige Alpha, Colbe Andrews, Kaylee Armenia, Olivia Bartlett, Truman Boller, Keenan Burr, Hunter Collins, Emerson Colwell, Axel Cruz, Michael Cushman, Trube Dean, Francette Donato, Eveliz Fuentes, Jackson Goulding, Samantha Gray, Schuyler Greenho, Emma Griffith, Destiny Kus, Gabriel Lavoie, Justen Lessard, Madelyn Maskell, Brendan McTigue, Michael Milazzo, Timothy O’Brien, Gavin Porter, Aidan Powers, Jacob Quaratella, Nicholas Vandette, Katrina Wallace, Avery Welch

Grade 9: Nicholas Adeletti, Andrew Bennett, Nihad Bicic, Ethan Carr, Lauren Creagan, Mischa Elmoznino, Shawn Grenier, Nicolette Hallahan, Jackson Harris, Zoe Jensen, Owen Kegley, Olivia Lecza, Mikayla Masilotti, Stephanie Mauro, James Mazzalupo, Colin McCarthy, Emily Mesham, Evan Morgan, Alexander Roth, Madison Thompson, Evan Visgilio, Aden Wilson, Paige Winchell, Ryan Zbierski

Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School     Honor Roll     Q1 2018-19

High Honors

Grade 8: Bridget Allan, Olivia Alpha, William Barry, Callie Bass, Livie Bass, Jillian Beebe, Jordan Beebe, Cooper Bowman, Ava Brinkerhoff, Jamie Bucior, Gretchen Burgess, Sarah Burnham, Hayley Cann, Liam Celic, Luke Celic, Alexander Chrysoulakis, Grace Colwell, Marjorie Curtis, William Danes, Anna Davis, Cole Dobratz, John Eichholz, Alexis Fenton, Matthew Grammatico, Karissa Huang, Owen Ingersoll-Bonsack, Aidan Kerrigan, Celia LaConti, Jonah Lathrop, Monique Lavoie, Jacob Lopez-Bravo, Ford Macadam, Marielle Mather, Madalyn McCulloch, Caden Monte, Calvin Monte, Cooper Munson, Alexander Olsen, Allott Patterson, Alain Pecher-Kohout, Olivia Powers, Kelsey Pryor, Izzadora Reynolds, Benjamin Roth, Rhyleigh Russell, Eli Ryan, Anders Silberberg, Alyssa Spooner, Samantha Tan, Tova Toriello, Kaitlyn Ward, Harry Whitten, George Williams, Quinn Williams

Grade 7: Peighton Andrews, Emma Bayor, Oliver Berry, Alis Bicic, Elliot Bjornberg, Drew Brackley, Natalie Buckley, Jackson Bullock, Sarah Colangelo, Ava Cummins, Ella Curtiss-Reardon, Eva D’Onofrio, Eric Dagher, Lucas DaSilva, Mulanga Drysile, Amelia Gage, Ryder Goss, Sydney Goulding, Nyla Goulis, Alexis Grasdock, Justin Green, Douglas Griswold, Katherine Gryk, Abby Hale, Nathaniel Heon, Leland Hine, Sedona Holland, Agatha Hunt, Beatrice Hunt, Sabina Jungkeit, Emmerson Kaye, Dakota Kotzan, Brodie Lippincott, Matthew Mazzalupo, Anna McAdams, Griffin McGlinchey, Elaina Morosky, Katherine Mullaney, Delaney Nelson, Isabelle O’Connor, Dylan Paynter, Grace Phaneuf, Jack Porter, Luisa Raby, Ava Roth, Charles Sahadi, Kylie-Jean Sevigny, Sydney Siefken, Owen Snurkowski, Hannah Thomas, Gabriel Tooker, Keara Ward, Louisa Warlitz, Mason Wells, Tyler Wells, Summer Wollack

Grade 6: Emma Arelt, Ella Austin, Oliver Avelange, Natalie Barndt, Micah Bass, Molly Boardman, Samuel Bocian, Justin Bonatti, Mark Burnham, Chase Calderon, Tabitha Colwell, Gloria Conley, Chloe Datum, Andrea DeBernardo, Autumn Dionne, Erin Durant, Shane Eastman-Grossel, Zoe Eastman-Grossel, Caeli Edmed, Anna Eichholz, Trinity Empie-Jones, Ella Evans, Davis Fallon, Grace Ferman, Hoshena Gemme, Marcella Gencarella, Ava Gilbert, Henry Griswold, Jonathan Harms, Hannah Johnston, Shyla Jones, Simon Karpinski, Aven Kellert, Olivia Kelly, Ella Kiem, Ada LaConti, James Lahot, Brenden Landry, Elise Leonardo, Evan LeQuire, Andrew Liu, Colette Marchant, Max Novak, Abigail O’Brien, Kanon Oharu, Filip Pecher-Kohout, Sophie Pennie, Charles Pitt, Shannon Pryor, Mutia Quarshie, Trinity Rando, Ysabel Rodriguez, Kelly Sheehan, Andrew Sicuranza, Drea Simler, Josephine Small, Audrey Spiegel, Morgan Standish, Madeline Supersano, Charlotte Tinniswood, Kathleen Walsh, Ava Wilcox, Ava Wood-Muller

Honors

Grade 8: Whitney Barbour, Gillian Bradley, Reece Guillet, Makenna Harms, Clarence Hinckley, Dylan Hovey, Madison Krol, Phoebe Lampos, Theodore Lampos, Karleigh Landers, Kennedy McCormick, Joseph Montazella, Jack Morgan, Jacob Rand, Jenna Schauder, Ned Smith, Joseph Steinmacher, Marco Supersano

Grade 7:  Morgan Bell, Macklin Cushman, Audrey LeCour, Luke Legein, Avra Montazella, Kalea VanPelt

Grade 6: Christopher Anderson, Dominic Clark, Rowan Hovey, Kyle Ingersoll-Bonsack, Peter Kuhn, Nathan Morgan

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State Senator-Elect Needleman Hosts First Office Hours, Dec. 6, in Colchester

State Senator-Elect Norm Needleman

State Senator-elect Norm Needleman (D-Essex) is inviting the public to ask questions, share their concerns and meet their new state senator during his  first public office hours to be held Thursday, Dec. 6, beginning at 7:30 p.m. at the McDonald’s restaurant at 375 South Main Street in Colchester.

For the past 30 years, Sen.-elect Needleman has been the owner and CEO of Tower Laboratories, a pharmaceutical business which employs more than 150 Connecticut residents.  Sen.-elect Needleman serves as a board member of the Middlesex County Chamber of Commerce, and he is also currently serving his fourth term as the first selectman of Essex

Beginning Jan. 9, 2019, Sen.-elect Needleman will represent more than 100,000 Connecticut residents in the 33rd State Senate District, which includes the Town of Lyme along with Chester, Clinton, Colchester, East Haddam, East Hampton, Essex, Deep River, Haddam, Portland, Westbrook, and part of Old Saybrook.

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‘The Magic of Christmas’ on View at FloGris Museum Through Jan. 6

All ages can enjoy the beautiful Palette Christmas Trees at the ‘Magic of Christmas’ exhibition

The holiday season is always something to celebrate at the Museum when”The Magic of Christmas” happens!

During the period, the Florence Griswold House will be decorated in the holiday finery of yesteryear with a new addition to the Magic—Marvelous Mantels. In the historic areas, the mantels over each fireplace are abundantly festooned with lush greens and festive ornaments that reflect the painting that hangs above.

In the Krieble Gallery, visitors can delight in the painted palettes on Miss Florence’s Artist Trees. Nearly 200 noted artists from across the country have donated works to this one-of-a-kind holiday icon. The palette artists’ styles and subject matter are as varied as the individuals. Oils, acrylics, watercolors, ceramics, glass, and collage are used to transform the palettes into traditional holiday scenes, delightful landscapes, and more than a few surprises.

And don’t forget Christmastime Teas are offered in Café Flo and there’s always a wonderful selection of gifts in The Shop.

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A la Carte: Got Leftovers? How About a Turkey Casserole?

Perhaps you are reading this column on the morning after Thanksgiving as you drink your cup of coffee or tea. It has been quite a few years since I sat with the newspaper and figured out which I should do first. I have been in my condo for almost five years and only created Thanksgiving dinner once, and only for around six or seven of us.

Many, many years ago, when my own daughter was still in elementary school, there would have been at least four little ones (two nieces, one nephew and Darcy) or up to 10 or more (more nephews, nieces, two step-sons, one step-daughter and all their parents). Even when the little ones became high schoolers, we still did Thanksgiving. Although there were extra bedrooms, there were sleeping bags filled with humans on floors everywhere.

The last Thanksgiving enormous dinner was in Old Lyme, just a few months before I sold the house and moved into my condo. That crowd included more than 20 friends and family. Many of the family members stayed over the weekend, and, except for a few sandwiches, there were no leftovers.

These days turkey day happens at my daughter-in-law’s condo in Newburyport. My stepson and Nancy have divorced, but it is amicable. My Massachusetts granddaughters will be there (one already graduated from college and living in Boston, the middle a senior at Clark in Worcester and the baby now a freshman at UMass in Amherst.) There will be leftovers, but I will leave them in Massachusetts, because I bought two Butterballs at BJs.

As you read this, one is thawing in my refrigerator, the stuffing is in the freezer, the gravy is made (with an Ina Garten recipe made with no turkey juice, which she calls a base. I will add that base to the basting as Mr. Tom comes out of the oven. With the mashed potatoes, vegetables, gravy, stuffing, turkey and cranberry (I love the canned kind for this casserole), I will make at least two or three casseroles.

Because I never grew up with casseroles, I actually like these better than the original meal. Here is my go-to recipe for this and any kind of meat leftover this winter.

Photo by Jonathan Pielmayer on Unsplash

Turkey Leftover Casserole

3 to 4 pounds of turkey, dark or white meat, slices or chunked, divided
2 pounds of vegetables (beans, turnips, Brussels sprouts, corn or squash), divided
2 to 3 pounds of mashed white potatoes and/or sweet potatoes, divided
1 to 2 pounds stuffing, divided
1 can of cranberry sauce (or made-scratch) cranberry sauce, divided
Leftover gravy from Thanksgiving, or packaged or carton gravy

In a large casserole dish (or a big gratin dish or a big Tupper-type holder), begin to layer the ingredients. I begin with a little mashed potato, then turkey, some gravy, vegetables, mashed potatoes, stuffing and a few slices of cranberry sauce. I end with mashed potatoes and drizzled with gravy, if you still have some. Each casserole will feed at least four to six people.

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Reading Uncertainly? ‘Essays After Eighty’ & ‘A Carnival of Losses: Notes Nearing Ninety’ by Donald Hall

“I teeter when I walk, I no longer drive, I look out the windows … My circles narrow. Each season my balance gets worse, and I sometimes fall. My fingers are clumsy and slow with buttons. I have problems with memory, sure, but it’s short-term memory … My summer nights are NESN and the Boston Red Sox. I enjoy multiple naps.”  So did the New Hampshire poet Donald Hall define life after 80!

I know, I know … I’m about the same age.  I too enjoyed Sidney Bechet when I was younger (a famous New Orleans jazz hero for you younger lads and lasses).  I too listened to Robert Frost in person (he “said” his lines at my high school in 1950 and 1951).  And I too have tried my hand at poetry (the haiku).

Some years ago, I was advised that one should not read a book until one is the same age as when the author wrote it. I let that pass, but now, after becoming immersed in Hall’s two last books, I suspect the advice may be sanguine. But that doesn’t mean that my younger readers should avoid these two volumes. No, not al all …

In these brief, enjoyable, humorous, and always challenging essays (Hall writes that he decided at eighty to dispense with his renowned poetry, after he served as the United States Poet Laureate, shifting to the essay). He describes poems as “ . . . image-bursts from the brain-depths, words flavored by battery-long vowels” that challenge our brains and imaginations, “ . . . delicate rhythms with forceful enjambments and an assonance of dipthongs.” These essays, fortunately, are less poetic!

I enjoyed especially his warnings on writing: “Don’t begin paragraphs with ‘I’” (I failed that one!). “Avoid ‘me’ and ‘my’ when you can. . . . Avoid the personal pronoun when you can. . . . “ and “don’t be afraid of contradiction: it is the cellular structure of life. . . . The emotional intricacy and urgency of human life expresses itself most fiercely in contradiction”.

Death, of course, is on his mind. “There is only one road” and “Of course all of us will be forgotten” but these essays demonstrate a life lived to the fullest, with humor and good feeling for his years in New Hampshire.

Donald Hall died quietly in Wilmot, NH on June 23, 2018. Do read these brief, succinct and poetic essays: perfect for the aging mind, as well as for those advancing inexorably to old age. Enjoy every moment!

Editor’s Note: ‘Essays After Eighty,’ 2014, and ‘A Carnival of Losses: Notes Nearing Ninety,’ both by Donald Hall were published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, New  York, respectively in 2014 and 2018.

Felix Kloman

About the Author: Felix Kloman is a sailor, rower, husband, father, grandfather, retired management consultant and, above all, a curious reader and writer. He’s explored how we as human beings and organizations respond to ever-present uncertainty in two books, ‘Mumpsimus Revisited’ (2005) and ‘The Fantods of Risk’ (2008). A 20-year resident of Lyme, he now writes book reviews, mostly of non-fiction that explores our minds, our behavior, our politics and our history. But he does throw in a novel here and there. For more than 50 years, he’s put together the 17 syllables that comprise haiku, the traditional Japanese poetry, and now serves as the self-appointed “poet laureate” of Ashlawn Farm Coffee, where he may be seen on Friday mornings. His late wife, Ann, was also a writer, but of mystery novels, all of which begin in a village in midcoast Maine, strangely reminiscent of the town she and her husband visited every summer.

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Giving Thanks: Community’s Food Drive Donations Exceed Expectations

Photo by B. Groth.

This year’s Thanksgiving Food Drive held by the Old Lyme Police Department and Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau (LYSB) was extremely successful. Pictured above taking a a brief break from sorting the huge amount of food donated by Lyme and Old Lyme residents during the Thanksgiving Food Drive are LYSB Director Mary Seidner (center), LYSB staff member Arleen Sharp (left) and LYSB community volunteer Leslie Massa. Pictured below, Arleen and Leslie continue the good work.

Photo by B. Groth.

All the food donated is distributed to families in need. Food will also be given to stock the mini-pantries at Lymes’ Senior Center and the Town of Old Lyme Social Services.

After local needs are met, all remaining food is given to Shoreline Soup Kitchens.

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