September 27, 2020

Ledge Light Confirms No New COVID-19 Cases in Past Week in Lyme, Old Lyme; Current Totals are 9 in Lyme, 27 in Old Lyme

Photo by CDC on Unsplash

LYME/OLD LYME — Ledge Light Health District (LLHD) issued their COVID-19 summary for the week ending Sept. 25 just after 7 p.m. Friday evening.

The report showed nine cases for Lyme and 27 cases for Old Lyme including two fatalities. These are same totals that LymeLine reported on Monday, Sept. 21.

This report covers cases by town for all the towns in the LLHD — both Lyme and Old Lyme are included in the district. LLHD states their data may conflict with what DPH reports on their website, as there is often a delay in posting data at the state level. The data LLHD reports was current as of noon Friday.

The most recent case in Lyme was a 62-year-old female, while Old Lyme’s was reported Sept. 15 and is a 19-year-old female.

The nine cases in Lyme comprise four females and five males ranging in age from one- to 68-years-old.

Gender and age details of the confirmed cases in Lyme to date are:

  1. Male, age 34
  2. Female, age 61
  3. Female, age 34
  4. Male, age 1
  5. Male, age 34
  6. Male, age 20
  7. Male, aged 68
  8. Female, age 21
  9. Female, age 62

The number of surviving cases in Old Lyme ranges in age from 19- to 82-years-old and comprises 12 males and 13 females. The two fatalities were a 61-year-old female and an 82-year-old male.

To demonstrate the growth in confirmed COVID-19 cases in Old Lyme, the table below is a summary of the cases that LymeLine.com has reported since March 31 when the first case was announced and also includes both fatalities.

DateCumulative no. of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Old Lyme
March 311
April 44
April 96
April 107
April 1510
April 1812
May 113
May 1515
May 2616
June 817
June 1018
June 1419
June 2221
June 2422
July 1722
July 2823
Sept. 224
Sept. 426
Sept. 1527

Details of all Old Lyme’s confirmed surviving cases to date are as follows:

  1. Female, age 64
  2. Female, age 21
  3. Male, age 27
  4. Female, age 53
  5. Female, age 61
  6. Female, age 29
  7. Male, age 40
  8. Male, age 53
  9. Female, age 60
  10. Male, age 45
  11. Female, age 20
  12. Female, age 43
  13. Female, age 48
  14. Male, age 70
  15. Male, age 67
  16. Female, age 68
  17. Male, age 50
  18. Male, age 21
  19. Female, age 48
  20. Female, age 34
  21. Male, age 20
  22. Male, age 28
  23. Male, age 74
  24. Male, age 61
  25. Female, age 19

Old Lyme First Selectman Timothy Griswold has previously noted that the 21-year-old female with a confirmed case (#2 in the list immediately above) was tested in Florida, but used an Old Lyme address although she does not live here. Because she gave the Old Lyme address, Griswold said that LLHD must report her as an Old Lyme resident.

Residents and businesses are urged to access up-to-date information regarding the pandemic from reputable sources including the Ledge Light Health District website (www.llhd.org), Facebook (@LedgeLightHD), Twitter (@LedgeLightHD), and Instagram (@LedgeLightHD).

Editor’s Note: Ledge Light Health District (LLHD) serves as the local health department in southeast Connecticut for the towns of Lyme and Old Lyme as well as East Lyme, Groton, Ledyard, New London, North Stonington,  Stonington and Waterford. As a health district, formed under Connecticut General Statutes Section 19a-241, LLHD is a special unit of government, allowing member municipalities to provide comprehensive public health services to residents in a more efficient manner by consolidating the services within one organization.

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Free ‘Introduction to Photography’ via Zoom Presented by CT Valley Camera Club, Classes Start Tuesday

Richard Spearrin will teach the upcoming free ‘Introduction to Photography’ classes.

LYME/OLD LYME — Have you ever wanted to take better pictures? Or wondered why your pictures are not always sharp? Or perhaps you are overwhelmed with all the adjustments of your camera?

The Connecticut Valley Camera Club (CTVCC) will host two virtual tutorials to enable beginning photographers to start taking better pictures and enjoy using their cameras. Classes are free and will be offered through Zoom.com software.

The instructor is Richard Spearrin from Essex, a member of the CTVCC Steering Committee.

Spearrin started learning the successful elements of photography during his high school years working for a small CT newspaper. Most recently he has become extremely active in exhibiting at multiple area venues, arranging photo shoots for the camera club and mentoring beginning photographers.

The first of the two sessions, “Principles of Photography,” will concentrate on understanding the basics of good photography: exposure, lighting, focus and composition. In addition, attendees will understand how to use their digital camera more effectively.

The second session is titled, “Fun Principles of Photography,” and will discuss specific photographic activities such as capturing fireworks; creating silky streams and waterfalls; capturing light streaks; stopping action and extreme close up. Flash photography is also included in the second session.

Each session is scheduled for one hour and 30 minutes to accommodate questions and answers. And it does not matter if you use a smartphone, a point and shoot camera or a high-end adjustable camera.

As Ansel Adams, renowned environmental photographer, said, “A camera did not make a great picture any more than a typewriter made a good novel”. A good photograph is based on the heart, eye, and soul of the photographer.

Classes are free and will take place on Tuesday, Sept. 29, and Tuesday, Oct. 13 from 7 to 8:30 p.m.

To register, send your name and email address to Richard Spearrin at wrspearrin@yahoo.com.  You will receive an invitation to attend the Zoom meetings prior to the first class.

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Residents Turn Out to Support Resolution on Racism at Old Lyme Board of Selectmen’s Meeting

OLD LYME — Almost a dozen residents showed up at the Sept. 22 Old Lyme Board of Selectmen’s Special Meeting to voice their support for the proposal made by Selectwoman Mary Jo Nosal that the board of selectmen should sign a Resolution on racism. There were several more who expressed the same opinion when First Selectman Timothy Griswold opened up the phone lines in Public Comment.

During the meeting, Nosal had again reviewed with her fellow board members the draft Resolution, which she introduced at the Aug. 8 meeting. It was not on the agenda at the Aug. 17 meeting, but was discussed at the Sept. 8 meeting and then again at the Sept. 22 meeting.

Summarizing the key points of the draft Resolution, which originated from the Town of Windsor, Conn. and is printed in full below, Nosal noted particularly that the Resolution asserts, “… racism is a public health crisis affecting our town and all of Connecticut.” Mentioning it has now been passed by a number of other towns in the state, Nosal reported that she had received, “A lot of feedback in favor of signing.”

She also commented that in previous discussions, other members of the board had said, “The tone [of the Resolution] seemed disagreeable.” Nosal therefore asked them for their latest thoughts.

Griswold opened by saying, “We all feel strongly that racism is a bad thing … but Old Lyme does a very good job. This document has a very negative tone.”

He added, “I’m still not comfortable with this type of a Resolution. I personally don’t see that there’s a problem in Old Lyme.” Elaborating on that opinion, he said, “I hesitate to have a Town Resolution with this language. I think our major purpose is to manage the town and not to sign on to Resolutions like this.”

Selectman Christopher Kerr asked Nosal where the closest towns (geographically) were that had already signed the Resolution. She responded that New London and New Haven had both signed the document, but also Old Saybrook and Lyme currently had it under consideration. He then indicated agreement with Griswold’s opinion, but commenting, “I’m not saying never.”

Kerr added, “I wouldn’t mind seeing what Lyme and Old Saybrook say.” Nosal reacted rapidly to that statement with the words, “I’d like us to be a leader rather than a follower.” She went on to say, “There is significant support that we acknowledge the problem,” pointing out that some different formats of the Resolution have been presented by members of the community.

Nosal distributed a shorter version of the Resolution and asked Griswold and Kerr to “Take a peek” at it. Saying that doing nothing was, “Similar to ignoring the pandemic,” Nosal urged the board, “… to use this as an educational moment,” adding, “I would really appreciate if you’d read this and give it some thought.”

Rev. Dr. Stephen Jungkeit, Senior Minister of the First Congregational Church of Old Lyme, was one of the first speakers during public comment. He said there were three reasons the board should sign the Resolution, the first being that there are members of black and brown communities living in Old Lyme, and, “Signing this resolution sends a message that we care.”

Secondly, Jungkeit suggested that endorsing the Resolution would, “Send a signal that we understand [the issue of racism] … and are in a relationship with other parts of the state.”

Finally, he reminded the board that “Racism is built into our history,” with over 100 named enslaved people identified in Old Lyme and around 60 unnamed. He cited Jane, who was “sold off” in the town at age three to be, “Used, possessed and enjoyed.”

Another speaker commented that regardless of whether there was a racism problem in Old Lyme, “We have a responsibility as a nation [on this matter.] It doesn’t matter how small we are,” while another noted, “We have an opportunity to affirm our position with this Resolution … we can affirm we act fairly and justly to all.”

Candace Fuchs spoke passionately on the subject of “micro-aggression,” declaring “Our white authority does not give us the right to ignore the scourge of racism.”

Recalling her youth growing up in Old Lyme, Kim Thompson explained, “The issues were not discussed here. What I learned about diversity, I learned outside Old Lyme. She continued, “Supporting this [Resolution] would be a first step in showing we agree racism is a problem.”

The overriding message from all the speakers was echoed in another’s words, “We need more diversity here. We need to have a statement like this [Resolution] to show where we want to be.”

In a voice filled with emotion, Nosal then said she wanted to, “Thank everybody that came tonight,” and express the wish that, “We can make amends and make our community healthier.”

Griswold opened the phone lines and Megan Nosal was the first to speak. Reminding the board of the famous quote, “In a racist society, it is not enough to be non-racist, we must be ant-racist,” she continued, “Old Lyme should lead a positive change,” adding, “Your town and your people are looking for change.”

Another resident who grew up in Old Lyme, Anna Reiter, called in to say if the Resolution were not signed, it “Would be an incredible disservice,” whereas approving it, “Would help us going forward as a town.”

Reiter concluded firmly, “I encourage the entire board of selectmen to tailor this Resolution,” [to something, which can be approved] urging them to be, “The leaders on the Shoreline,” and reminding them, “This is not going away.”

***

The following is the original DRAFT Resolution that Nosal presented for discussion:

WHEREAS, racism is a social system with multiple dimensions: individual racism that is interpersonal and/or internalized or systemic racism that is institutional or structural, and is a system of structuring opportunity and assigning value based on the social interpretation of how one looks;

WHEREAS race is a social construct with no biological basis; 

WHEREAS racism unfairly disadvantages specific individuals and communities, while unfairly giving advantages to other individuals and communities, and saps the strength of the whole society through the waste of human resources; 

WHEREAS racism is a root cause of poverty and constricts economic mobility; 

WHEREAS racism causes persistent discrimination and disparate outcomes in many areas of life, including housing, education, employment, and criminal justice, and is itself a social determinant of health; 

WHEREAS racism and segregation have exacerbated a health divide resulting in people of color in Connecticut bearing a disproportionate burden of illness and mortality including COVID-19 infection and death, heart disease, diabetes, and infant mortality; 

WHEREAS Black, Native American, Asian and Latino residents are more likely to experience poor health outcomes as a consequence of inequities in economic stability, education, physical environment, food, and access to health care and these inequities are, themselves, a result of racism; 

WHEREAS more than 100 studies have linked racism to worse health outcomes; and 

WHEREAS the collective prosperity and wellbeing of TOWN depends upon equitable access to opportunity for every resident regardless of the color of their skin: 

Now, therefore, be it Resolved, that the TOWN Board of Selectmen

(1) Assert that racism is a public health crisis affecting our town and all of Connecticut; 

(2) Work to progress as an equity and justice-oriented organization, by continuing to identify specific activities to enhance diversity and to ensure antiracism principles across our leadership, staffing and contracting;

(3) Promote equity through all policies approved by the Board of Selectmen and enhance educational efforts aimed at understanding, addressing and dismantling racism and how it affects the delivery of human and social services, economic development and public safety;

(4) Improve the quality of the data our town collects and the analysis of that data—it is not enough to assume that an initiative is producing its intended outcome, qualitative and quantitative data should be used to assess inequities in impact and continuously improve;

(5) Continue to advocate locally for relevant policies that improve health in communities of color, and support local, state, regional, and federal initiatives that advance efforts to dismantle systemic racism;

(6) Further work to solidify alliances and partnerships with other organizations that are confronting racism and encourage other local, state, regional, and national entities to recognize racism as a public health crisis;

(7) Support community efforts to amplify issues of racism and engage actively and authentically with communities of color wherever they live; and

(8) Identify clear goals and objectives, including periodic reports to the Board of Selectmen, to assess progress and capitalize on opportunities to further advance racial equity.

 

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No ‘Wee Faerie Village’ This Year, But a Virtual One Opens at Florence Griswold Museum

OLD LYME — The Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme has been obliged to postpone one of its most popular events, Wee Faerie Village, due to ongoing health risks associated with large crowds amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and in accordance with guidance from the State of Connecticut.
In an inspired move, however, the Museum is today launching Virtual Faerie Village in its place. This will be available through Nov. 1, at FlorenceGriswoldMuseum.org and VirtualFaerieVillage.org
After the success of the Museum’s online camp and other virtual programs, Museum staff are now offering faerie fun to be had safely at home with activities planned to capture the magic of the faerie realm for participants of all ages.
One of the highlights will be Wee TV, half-hour episodes of faerie crafts and special guests. Extra creative faerie aficionados will want to take part in the Wee Faerie Super Fan and Crafting Club. Club members receive a Folly Woods pin (only 100 available).  Register for the Club at this link.
This year’s Wee Faerie Village theme, Folly Woods – Awesome Wee Faerie Architecture has been postponed to October of 2021, when the Museum visitors will again be able to experience in person the magic of the outdoor installations of enchanting faerie houses created by artists and designers.
The Museum has expressed gratitude to the artists who have been working tirelessly on their creations for Folly Woods – Awesome Wee Faerie Architecture. They have graciously agreed to present their work next year. 

Virtual Faerie Village is generously supported by Art Bridges, the ForGood Fund at the Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut, and the Joffray Family.

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Old Lyme Historical Soc., Duck River Garden Club Present Zoom Program on ‘Salt March Haying,’ Wednesday

Salt Marsh haying in progress. Photo courtesy of the Lane Memorial Library, Hampton, N.H.

OLD LYME — What is Salt Marsh and why was this grass so prized in Colonial times?

The Old Lyme Historical Society and Duck River Garden Club will provide the answers in a Zoom presentation titled, ‘Salt Marsh Haying,’ which they are co-sponsoring, Wednesday, Sept. 30, at 7 p.m.

Shaun Roche, Visitor Service Manager with the United States Fish & Wildlife Service, will speak to the historic uses and  the eco-value of our salt marshes. 

All are welcome. Email info@oldlymehistorical.org to obtain a link to  this event.

from the Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge

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Gardening with The English Lady: Tips for September, the Month of ‘Warmth, Depth and Color’ (Patience Strong)

‘Warmth, depth and color’ on show in this autumn garden. Photo by Jan Canty on Unsplash.

Rain through August has been quite plentiful. The weeds continue to grow but I have been able to keep a handle on them with the use of natural Bradfield Organics corn gluten-based weed pre-emergent, which can be purchased at any reputable garden center.

Blue hydrangeas. Photo by Gemma Evans on Unsplash.

HYDRANGEAS … AND THEIR PRUNING

The reason that Hydrangeas do not bloom is that gardeners prune them at the wrong time.  If you feel that your Hydrangea macrophylla needs ventilation, as the growth has become too dense. then prune by the middle of September. The reason being, that Hydrangeas set their buds for next season by late September; consequently, later pruning will cut off those buds, which negates any chance of bloom for next season or even the following season.  

Now that September has arrived, prune any old woody stems that have not bloomed well and any weak new shoots.  After pruning, apply a few inches of composted manure and some peat followed by a top dressing of natural brown bark mulch.  The peat aids acidity in the soil, which is necessary as Hydrangeas may become chlorotic if the soil is too alkaline. By the way, chlorotic means abnormal reduction or loss of normal green coloration of the leaves of plants.

Hydrangeas also do not like to be transplanted; transplanting them can result in little to no bloom for many seasons. 

This fall, as you contemplate your landscape, think on the past season as to what worked for you and what you will never try again. 

Unfortunately, mint has taken over the border beneath my Franklinia tree. Many years ago my friend Roz, was kindly lending a hand in the garden and planted mint in the garden instead of a large container I located for that very purpose.  As I was busy with other garden chores at that moment, by the time I noticed the error, six months had gone by and the mint was rampant among the blue myrtle edging the borders. Please take note that mint is extremely invasive and should only be planted in containers where its wayward habits can be controlled.

‘A gardener’s work is never done’, with that being said, in September after all your hard labor in the growing season, take a break. Sit outside and inhale the late garden fragrances and allow Mother Nature to anchor and relax you. 

This month, gardening chores are not overwhelming so enjoy the autumn sunshine, pleasantly warm on the face with cool breezes that are so welcome.  

In the early morning, I like to sit on my patio near the herb garden, looking at my sage, making a note to cut some to take indoors for drying and in my recipes.  I will also gather sage and lavender, which will be tied with string into small bunches to hang in my closets; this helps to repel moths. I also insert small bunches of lavender in drawers to keep moths from devouring my woolens as insects do not like fragrance. 

In your vegetable garden, sow spinach for spring harvest and sow a cover crop like winter rye, which can be dug in next spring together with composted manure as green manure. Green manure gives a rich growing environment for next year’s vegetables. 

Now is the time to get your fall compost pile cooking with the last of the grass clippings, spent perennials, leaves and small woody twigs.  

It’s also the time to dig up, divide and replant overgrown perennials. Follow this method every three to four years to ensure vibrant bloom from these plants. Never plant or transplant any division or transplant deeper in the soil than it is now or any deeper than the plant sits in the pot.

In the less hectic pace of fall, early autumn is the time to re-think your gardens. The garden’s pre-winter grooming will wait for a few weeks.  You may feel that you would like to have a professional design as you have decided that your borders are not up to scratch.

If that is so, then contact someone that you trust to create a plan in the fall and winter, which can be phased in beginning next spring.  Engage someone who will listen to your thoughts and stay within your budget.  

Peonies in bloom. Photo by Sarah Mitchell-Baker on Unsplash.

PEONIES 

September is the month to plant and transplant Peonies.  Do not plant them deeply or they will not bloom, that means only have enough soil to hold them erect with  the ‘pink eyes’ on the roots barely covered.  Plant them with a light application of composted manure around the plant.  Then in November, following the first hard frost, cut down the Peony foliage to about four inches from the ground. 

In a few weeks, the bright vibrancy of autumn color will appear on the maples. Fall’s brilliant autumn finery is the last hurrah, before winter sets in. Climbing up the red milk shed near the barn, the buds on the autumn clematis are beginning to unfurl and in the herb garden, autumn crocus, asters and sedum will take their curtain calls. 

In order for your soil to remain healthy, add a reasonable layer of composted manure to all the borders now or in early October, together with a two-inch layer of fine bark mulch around to all newly-planted and -transplanted perennials and shrubs.  With the application of the manure and mulch, you are continuing to build the humus component, which will ensure a rich growing environment for spring and protect the plants from winter’s harsh conditions.  

I do not cut down my spent perennials but leave them up for the birds, as the ripened seed heads are a delicious treat.  Following the vibrancy of summer bloom, I enjoy the softer subtle colors of gray, brown and yellow of spent perennials and grasses blending naturally with the muted winter landscape, which to me offers a resting of the senses. 

A TIME FOR PLANTING

Early- to mid-October is a great time to be planting. The benefits of fall planting for trees, shrubs and perennials include giving them a head-start with root development over those planted in the spring. This is especially so when we experience a late spring when planting cannot begin until late April. In New England’s fall, the cooler temperatures and still warm soil encourage the plants to direct their energy into producing strong roots.   

Any new evergreens you have acquired must be planted in early October. The reason being that evergreens are shallow rooted and need time to establish before the ground freezes. Root growth will continue in fall, as long as soil temperature is above 40 degrees, which here in Connecticut, is about the second week of November.

Plant the evergreens with peat and composted manure and natural brown mulch around the plants and water until the ground freezes in November. Keep the mulch about six inches away from the trunks so that rodents do not take up residence and gnaw on the bark. 

Evergreens lose water quickly when exposed to cold winter wind, especially for broad leaf evergreens like the rhododendrons. Natural additions of mulch around the plants help to keep them moist and protected from the damage of bitter windblasts.

Small evergreens can be protected by loosely covering with burlap. The same treatment can be given to rose bushes. Continue watering all newly-planted trees, shrubs and perennials until the ground freezes.

The following trees are not good candidates for fall planting: Birches, Larches, Gingko, Oaks, Magnolia, and all flowering fruit and flowering trees as well as the Eastern Red Cedar.  These trees have fleshy root systems and their feeder roots are not large when young and take time to establish; they therefore are susceptible to frost heave.

Also some perennials that do not like to be planted in fall are Artemisia, Lambs Ears, Foxglove, Penstemon, Anemone, Campanula, Kniphofia, Lupines, Scabiosa, Ferns and Grasses. 

Plant garlic this month for harvest next June – garlic is the antibiotic of the garden. Plant it under fruit trees to avoid scab and root disease, next to ponds or standing water to control mosquito larvae or pour garlic water into ponds, bird baths and fountains to deter adult mosquitoes. 

BARGAINS

This is a good time to pick up end of season plant bargains. Most nurseries and garden centers reduce their prices so they do not have to winter plants over in the nursery. However, keep your eyes open for the following problem plants:

POTBOUND PLANTS

Check the bottom of the pot to see if the roots are growing through the holes.  If not, gently tap the plant out of the container to see if it has a network of overlapping roots that wrap around the root ball.  It is possible to salvage a root-bound plant, which is suffering from water and nutrient deficiencies over the summer, but it will be slow to root. Before you plant this one in your garden, cut the encircling roots – the roots will now be shorter but will take root easier. 

DISEASED PLANTS 

Plants that have been in containers all summer and have been fed high nitrogen fertilizers are easy targets for pests and diseases. Check for spots on the foliage, wilted or curling leaves and discolored roots, as well as visible signs of pest damage and infestation such as webbing or sticky residue on foliage. Not only would these plants do poorly in the garden but could infect your other plants and the soil.  Soil-borne diseases are the most difficult to deal with.

BADLY-SHAPED PLANTS

Badly shaped plants are the ‘Charlie Brown’ Christmas trees of the plant world, the unwanted orphans that have been passed over year after year; these are the runts of the litter!  Do not set yourself up for disappointment looking at an ugly tree or shrub just to save a few dollars.

MISLABLED PLANTS

At the end of the season, many plant tags have been lost or mixed up, which means you are likely to get a perennial with flowers that are not the color you expected. Or you may buy a deciduous tree or shrub when you were looking for an evergreen variety. Stick to the plants that are part of large displays of identically-labeled plants or with labels so firmly attached that look like they have been there for a while.

With any and all above-mentioned plants – always add composted manure around the plant and do not plant any deeper than it is in its pot or burlap wrapping. Always wear gloves when working with manure; there is bacteria in the manure – great for the soil but not healthy for you. 

Please note that the bargain you get is often not worth the discount price. 

NEW LAWN OR PATCH SEEDING 

Photo by Chris Zhang on Unsplash.

September is an excellent time to plant new grass — the young grass plants will have the advantage over weeds. Do not buy cheap seed, you reap what you sow! 

Gently de-thatch the areas that you wish to overseed or patch. Do not use the large thatching machines, which can damage existing grass. Add some composted manure to the area, broadcast the seed and cover the newly-seeded grass area with salt hay (free from weed seed). Do not allow the soil surface to dry out, keep it moist. Do not saturate the area or the seed will wash away.  

When the grass appears, stay off it, do not mow and leave the salt hay to rot.  Next spring, a healthy lawn will emerge and if there are a few bare patches in April, you can fill in those spots. 

‘A host of golden daffodils.’ Photo by Sarah Mitchell-Baker on Unsplash.

I hope your spring bulb orders are in by now. Be adventurous this year and go for masses of a single color for the greatest impact. No matter how small your planting area, it is the intensity that counts, with two or three dozen red Tulips or a hundred Daffodils planted on your woodland edge. 

Buying daffodils in large numbers is less expensive, although the bulbs are usually smaller – this is not a problem as daffodil bulbs grow larger each year. Even though many say the spacing between these larger bulbs should be six inches, there is no reason they cannot touch.  

Put some composted manure or bulb food on the soil where the bulbs are planted. Make sure you plant the Daffodils eight inches below the frost line, with the pointed end up. Wear gloves when you plant bulbs as they have a skin irritant, which may cause a rash.

If you cannot plant your bulbs when you receive them, store them in a cool, dry place in paper bags.  The best time to plant spring bulbs in the Northeast is the end of October to the middle of November.

Lily of the Valley can be transplanted this month, but wear gloves because there is toxicity in this plant.  

Dig up your gladioli corms, Calla bulbs, Elephant ear bulbs and Dahlia tubers when the foliage turns yellow.  Lay them in the sun to “cure” and store them in a cool, dry dark place. When you dig the Dahlia tubers, do not pull them, pulling can break the tubers. 

In early September after their summer sojourn outdoors, take your houseplants indoors and wash the foliage gently and repot with new potting soil into a clean container. Repot those plants that have outgrown their pots to a clean container that is only one size larger. 

Fall and early winter is a great time to do stonework – dry-laid paths, walls and patios, as well as repairing fences, arbors and pergolas, and building decks. Paint wooden outdoor furniture with eco-conscious paint before putting them undercover for winter. In October, I will tell you more about how to go about stonework.   

September is a gardener’s paradise; the air is cooler, the soil easy to work and you will not overheat with the effort.  Stay awhile in your garden; enjoy the comforting fragrance of fall.       

I’ll see you in your garden next month. Meanwhile, e-mail me with gardening questions at MaureenHaseleyJones@gmail.com

Maureen Haseley-Jones

About the author: Maureen Haseley-Jones is a member of a family of renowned horticultural artisans, whose landscaping heritage dates back to the 17th century. She is one of the founders, together with her son Ian, of, ‘The English Lady Landscape and Home Company.’ Maureen and Ian are landscape designers and garden experts, who believe that everyone deserves to live in an eco-conscious environment and enjoy the pleasure that it brings. Maureen learned her design skills from both her mother and grandmother, and honed her horticultural and construction skills while working in the family nursery and landscape business in the U.K. Her formal horticultural training was undertaken at the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew in Surrey.
Contact Maureen at maureenhaseleyjones@gmail.com

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Death of Patricia Bugbee of Old Lyme Announced; Lifelong Resident, ‘Beloved Fixture at LOL High School’ for 21 Years (Neviaser)

Patricia Ann Bugbee, 1953-2020.

OLD LYME — UPDATED 5:30pm: It is with deep sadness that we share news of the passing of Patricia Ann Bugbee.

“Ms. Bugbee,” as she was known to generations of Lyme-Old Lyme High Schoolers, will be deeply missed.

Asked his reaction to the news of Ms. Bugbee’s passing, Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser responded to LymeLine.com, “Ms. Bugbee was a beloved fixture at Lyme-Old Lyme High School. Her cheerful demeanor and great sense of humor were recognized by many in the 21 years she served our district. We extend our deepest condolences to her family.”

In our experience, Pat was a wonderful person, always going out of her way to help and comfort those in need. With her bright personality and sharp sense of humor, she brightened everyone’s day at the high school.

We at LymeLine.com also extend our deepest sympathies to all Pat’s family.

Her full obituary reads:

Patricia Ann Bugbee, 67, of Old Lyme passed away Thursday, Sept. 17, 2020, at Shoreline Clinic.

Patricia was born at L+M Hospital March 10, 1953. She grew up in Old Lyme attending Elementary, Middle and High School. Upon graduation, she worked for Chesebrough-Ponds for over two decades. She took an early retirement from there, and after a few other careers, became the Administration Assistant to the Vice Principal at the Lyme-Old Lyme High School for over 21 years.

She will be sadly missed by her father Donald S. Bugbee Sr; brother Donald S. Bugbee Jr; son John Duddy and his wife Melinda; and son-in-law Edward Wysocki. Patricia’s grandchildren were the light of her life, Eric J. Wysocki, Alexandra M. Duddy, Kelly A. Wysocki and Elizabeth M. Duddy. She loved being their Nana. Patricia was surrounded by a very large family of cousins, nieces, nephews, aunts and uncles, and amazing lifelong friends and coworkers that were all loved by her. Patricia is predeceased by her mother Dorothy K. Bugbee; sister Deborah Rutty and daughter Heather Ann (Duddy) Wysocki.

She was a lifelong resident of Old Lyme and loved being a part of her community. She was seen out at band and chorus concerts, years of theatrical productions, many years of supporting the districts sporting events but especially volleyball and softball games and soccer matches in East Haven. She was known for her kindness, laugh, work ethic and her desire to help. Family and friends have reached out to her for recipes for all types of foods. She was called upon, for decades, to help many with her seamstress abilities. There are many quilts, blankets, prom and wedding dresses, dolls and needlepoint pieces with her heart sewn in each piece.

There will be a private viewing for family held Saturday, Sept. 26, at the Fulton Theroux Funeral Home at 13 Beckwith Lane, Old Lyme. There will a public burial service at 11 a.m. the same day, Sept. 26, at the Laysville Cemetery in Old Lyme, at the Intersection of Grassy Hill and Boston Post Road. Social distancing and Masks will be required. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, there will be a celebration of her life at some point in the future.

The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the American Heart Association or the Old Lyme Fire Department in her name.

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Letter to the Editor: Carney Deserves Re-election, No One Works Harder for Lyme-Old Lyme Community

To the Editor:

Rep. Devin Carney is a champion for Lyme and Old Lyme at the State Capitol. Among his many accomplishments, he has worked to defeat the high-speed train from decimating our community,  helped secure funding for Old Lyme’s library and open space in Lyme, and supported local parents in their fight to stop state-mandated school regionalization.

Locally, Devin is active in Old Saybrook Rotary, which provides scholarships to Lyme–Old Lyme students; he’s a member of the Lyme–Old Lyme Chamber of Commerce; and he serves on the Old Lyme Zoning Board of Appeals.  No one works harder for our community!

Over his six years in office, Devin has amassed a successful record of fighting for his constituents; he knows his district and he knows his way around the capitol. There is still work to be done, and with his committee assignments and House leadership status, Devin Carney is the right person to continue representing the 23rd District in Hartford. He has my vote and I hope he can count on yours.

Sincerely,

Ellen Cole,
Old Lyme.

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All You Need to Know About Registering to Vote, Applying for an Absentee Ballot and VOTING!

LYME/OLD LYME — Tuesday, Sept. 22, marked the 9th annual National Voter Registration Day – a nonpartisan and collaborative effort that involves partners of all stripes and sizes across the country to register voters ahead of the November election.

One in four eligible Americans is not registered to vote, and National Voter Registration Day seeks to make voter registration calls to action impossible to ignore, so that as many citizens as possible are empowered to participate in our democracy.

There are two simple ways to register to vote:

  • You can register online here.  To register online, you must have a current, valid driver’s license, learner’s permit or non-driver photo ID card issued by the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and a signature on file with DMV.
  • If you are a Lyme resident, you can register in person any weekday during normal business hours (9 a.m. to 4 p.m.) at the Lyme Town Hall at 480 Hamburg Road.
  • If you are an Old Lyme resident, you can register to vote Monday through Friday (9 a.m. to 4 p.m.) in the Registrar’s Office or in the Town Clerk’s office if the Registrars are not available.

If you are not sure if you are registered, you can check your current voting status by visiting the link here and entering your name, town of residence and date of birth.

Latest Information on Absentee Ballots for Nov. 3 Election From our Towns

Town of Lyme

The Secretary of the State’s office has mailed absentee ballot applications to every registered voter in Connecticut for the November 3, 2020, General Election.  Registered voters in Lyme began receiving their absentee ballot applications in the mail on Thursday, September 17.  If you wish to use the absentee ballot application you received in the mail, follow the directions on the insert included with the application, which are also listed here:

  1. Check that your personal information is correct in Section 1.
  2. Select a reason for voting by absentee ballot in Section 2. All voters may choose “COVID-19.”
  3. Sign your application in Section 3.
  4. Seal it in the envelope and drop it in the secure Official Ballot Drop Box at Lyme Town Hall on the sidewalk (preferred) or mail it in the postage-paid envelope included.

Things to remember:

  • If you have already submitted an absentee ballot application to the Lyme Town Clerk for the General Election on November 3, please destroy the application you receive from the State.
  • If you submitted an absentee ballot application for the Primary in August, that application was only for the Primary. If you wish to vote by absentee in the General Election in November, you must submit an absentee ballot application for the General Election.
  • Be sure to sign your application in Section 3, not Section 4. If someone assisted you in completing the application, that person would sign in Section 4.  You will not receive a ballot if you do not sign the application in Section 3.
  • Deposit your application in the Town of Lyme Official Drop Box only, not in the drop box of any other town. Residents should only deposit their applications in the drop box for the town where they are registered voters.
  • Absentee ballots will be sent out starting October 2.

Should you have any questions, contact the Town Clerk by phone at 860-434-7733, Mondays through Fridays, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Town of Old Lyme

Due to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis, all voters will be permitted to vote by absentee ballot rather than appear in person in the Nov. 3, 2020 Election.

For those who wish to appear in person, the polling place located at the Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School, 53 Lyme Street, Old Lyme, CT will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Election Day to cast your ballot.

The Secretary of the State’s (SOTS) office will be mailing Applications for Absentee Ballot to all registered voters beginning mid-September.  The completed Applications can then be sent to the Town Clerk’s office and absentee ballots will be issued by the Old Lyme Town Clerk’s office.

You may also drop your completed Application in our Official Ballot Drop Box located in the front of the Town Hall.

The Old Lyme Town Clerk’s office will begin mailing out Absentee Ballots on Friday, Oct. 2, 2020.

As great numbers of voters wishing to vote absentee are anticipated, the following is recommended:

  • Do not use the Application for Absentee Ballot which was mailed to you for the Aug. 11, 2020 Primaries as it will be rejected. You will receive a new one specifically for the Nov. 3, 2020 election.
  • Applications for Absentee Ballots will be mailed to you from the SOTS beginning mid-September.
  • If you do not receive your Application for Absentee Ballot for the Nov. 3, 2020 election in the mail by Sept. 30,  contact the Old Lyme Town Clerk’s office or you may visit the link here to obtain one.
  • If you have previously filed an Application for Absentee Ballot for the Nov. 3, 2020 election with the Town Clerk’s office, disregard the one received from the SOTS.  Your initial Application will be processed.
  • Completed Applications for Absentee Ballot can be mailed to the Old Lyme Town Clerk’s office or dropped in the Official Ballot Drop Box located in front of the Old Lyme Town Hall.
  • Absentee Ballots will be mailed by the Old Lyme Town Clerk’s office beginning Oct. 2, 2020.
  • Once you have received your Absentee Ballot and cast your vote, you may mail it to the Old Lyme Town Clerk’s office or drop it into the Official Ballot Drop Box located in front of the Old Lyme Town Hall.  As time is of the essence, do not wait to deliver it to us as the Old Lyme Town Clerk’s office will need time to process it.

Should you have any additional questions concerning the upcoming election, contact the Town Clerk’s office at (860) 434-1605 Ext. 220 (Vicki) or Ext. 221 (Courtney).

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New COVID-19 Cases Confirmed in Lyme, Old Lyme

Photo by CDC on Unsplash

OLD LYME/LYME — UPDATED SEPT. 21: Old Lyme First Selectman Timothy Griswold has informed LymeLine.com that a new COVID-19 case has been confirmed in Old Lyme. He said that this new case was reported Sept. 15 and is a 19-year-old female.

Ledge Light Health District (LLHD) also confirmed a new case of COVID-19 in Lyme in their weekly report issued Friday, Sept. 18. This report covers cases by town for all the towns in the health district they cover. Both Lyme and Old Lyme are included in that district.

Ledge Light Health District has now confirmed that the new case in Lyme is a 62-year-old female.

Old Lyme now has a total of 27 cases including two fatalities while Lyme has a total of nine.

The number of surviving cases in Old Lyme ranges in age from 19- to 82-years-old and comprises 12 males and 13 females. The two fatalities were a 61-year-old female and an 82-year-old male.

The nine cases in Lyme comprise four females and five males ranging in age from one- to 68-years-old.

To demonstrate the growth in confirmed COVID-19 cases in Old Lyme, the table below is a summary of the cases that LymeLine.com has reported since March 31 when the first case was announced and also includes both fatalities.

DateCumulative no. of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Old Lyme
March 311
April 44
April 96
April 107
April 1510
April 1812
May 113
May 1515
May 2616
June 817
June 1018
June 1419
June 2221
June 2422
July 1722
July 2823
Sept. 224
Sept. 426
Sept. 1527

Details of all Old Lyme’s confirmed surviving cases to date are as follows:

  1. Female, age 64
  2. Female, age 21
  3. Male, age 27
  4. Female, age 53
  5. Female, age 61
  6. Female, age 29
  7. Male, age 40
  8. Male, age 53
  9. Female, age 60
  10. Male, age 45
  11. Female, age 20
  12. Female, age 43
  13. Female, age 48
  14. Male, age 70
  15. Male, age 67
  16. Female, age 68
  17. Male, age 50
  18. Male, age 21
  19. Female, age 48
  20. Female, age 34
  21. Male, age 20
  22. Male, age 28
  23. Male, age 74
  24. Male, age 61
  25. Female, age 19

Griswold has previously noted that the 21-year-old female with a confirmed case (#2 in the list immediately above) was tested in Florida, but used an Old Lyme address although she does not live here. Because she gave the Old Lyme address, Griswold said that LLHD must report her as an Old Lyme resident.

Gender and age details of the confirmed cases in Lyme to date are:

  1. Male, age 34
  2. Female, age 61
  3. Female, age 34
  4. Male, age 1
  5. Male, age 34
  6. Male, age 20
  7. Male, aged 68
  8. Female, age 21
  9. Female, age 62

Residents and businesses are urged to access up-to-date information regarding the pandemic from reputable sources including the Ledge Light Health District website (www.llhd.org), Facebook (@LedgeLightHD), Twitter (@LedgeLightHD), and Instagram (@LedgeLightHD).

Editor’s Note: Ledge Light Health District (LLHD) serves as the local health department in southeast Connecticut for the towns of Lyme and Old Lyme as well as East Lyme, Groton, Ledyard, New London, North Stonington,  Stonington and Waterford. As a health district, formed under Connecticut General Statutes Section 19a-241, LLHD is a special unit of government, allowing member municipalities to provide comprehensive public health services to residents in a more efficient manner by consolidating the services within one organization.

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‘Coastal Cleanup’ at Old Lyme’s White Sand Beach Generates 78 Pounds of Garbage

Help to keep White Sand Beach beautiful. Join a Beach Cleanup on Saturday, Sept. 19!

OLD LYME — UPDATED Sept. 21: After the Clean-Up Event was held this past Saturday, Sept. 19, organizer Marie Ryan expressed her thanks to all who volunteered, saying on her Facebook page, ” Many, many thank you’s to all the wonderful people who volunteered in the International Coastal Clean Up Day, Save the Sound at White Sand Beach today.”

She added, “We collected 78 pounds (!) of garbage and truly made a difference for our lovely beach and coastline.”

Are you concerned with the state of our environment? Do you want to help do your part to preserve our coastlines? Will you commit to ‘Strive to Stop the Spread of Litter in the Long Island Sound’?

Then join Marie Ryan of Old Lyme and Reynolds’ Subaru of Lyme in a volunteer coastal cleanup of White Sand Beach in Old Lyme on Saturday, Sept. 19, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. For further details, contact Marie at mcargr@aol.com or call her at 860-304-3334.

This volunteer event is part of Save the Sound’s annual coastal cleanup efforts.  Save the Sound organizes cleanup events every fall. The Connecticut Cleanup is part of the International Coastal Cleanup, which takes place each year within the months of September and October. Volunteers are needed to remove trash and collect data that will be used to help stop debris at its source. 

There are additional opportunities to assist this effort apart from at White Sand Beach. Find a complete list of cleanups throughout the state at this link, choose your beach and then register. Save the Sound will follow up with details about how to connect with your beach’s Cleanup Captain on the day of the event.

For more information about Save the Sound’s Coastal Cleanup program, visit www.savethesound.org/2020Cleanup or call Save the Sound’s Volunteer Coordinator, Annalisa Paltauf, at (203) 787-0646, Ext.116

Last year, Save the Sound’s Coastal Cleanup program helped bring together 2,554 volunteers, who removed 6,017 pounds of trash from over 78 miles of Connecticut shoreline. Volunteers will remove trash and collect data that will be used to help stop debris at its source.

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Death Announced of Thomas W. Bump of Old Lyme; Lifelong Resident, Member of Last Class to Complete All 12 Grades in Center School

Thomas W. Bump, 1939-2020.

OLD LYME —Thomas W. Bump, 81, of Old Lyme passed away Saturday, Sept. 5, 2020, at his home in Old Lyme. Mr. Bump was born Jan. 29, 1939, in Old Lyme to his late parents Francis and Anne Faherty Bump. He was the beloved husband of Elsie Bump, who passed away in January of this year.

Thomas is survived by his children: Robert Thompson, Cherie LeClaire and her husband Lee, Laura Zaks and her husband Billy, Heather Colli and her husband Mark, Bonnie Thompson, Eliz-abeth Rubitski and her husband David; as well as seven grandchildren: Robert Thompson and his wife Wendy, William Thompson, Nicole and Amber LeClair, Danielle Impelliterri, Tabatha and Sadie Rubitski; as well as seven great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by his brothers, John and Fred Bump.

Thomas was a lifelong resident of Old Lyme, having graduated in 1957, as part of the last class to complete all twelve grades from Center School. After serving on the U.S. naval aircraft carrier, USS Ranger, during the Vietnam War, Thomas returned home and worked as a mechanic for Saunders Garage. He met Elsie, the love of his life, at the Nautilus restaurant in 1968, and the two raised their six children together. Thomas was a very hard working, supportive and friendly man who will be remembered by many for his sense of humor and kindness. A volunteer with the Old Lyme EMS for over 30 years, Thomas served his community with honor and made many, many friends.

The family would like everyone to know that a celebration of both Thomas and Elsie’s life will be announced at a date in the future, when it is safe to do so and when the lives of these two wonderful people can be celebrated in the manner they so deserve. Fulton Theroux Funeral Service, 13 Beckwith Lane, Old Lyme, is handling arrangements for the family. Please visit www.fultontherouxoldlyme.com for tributes and more information.

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Reading Uncertainly? ‘The Youngest Science: Notes of a Medicine Watcher’ by Lewis Thomas

There is nothing quite like reading about the advances in medicine in the middle of a pandemic, especially when those advances were first reported to me some 37 years ago.

Lewis Thomas wrote his fluid, literate, and candid autobiography back in 1983, when I first read it. It is his personal story of curiosity, experimentation, failures, and successes. He confirms how much we humans have learned about ourselves … and yet how little we really know.

He describes how medicine has evolved from a doctor holding your hand, prescribing placebos, and murmuring assurances (almost religious rituals) to the start (only a start) of understanding how we tick.

Back in that distant past (before World War II, medicine was “ … bleeding, cupping, violent purging, the raising of blisters by vesicant ointments, the immersion of the body in either ice water or intolerably hot water, endless lists of botanized extracts cooked up and mixed together under the influence of nothing more than pure whim, and all these things were drilled into the heads of medical students …”

Have we improved? Yes, argues the good doctor!

In the past, “ … medicine, for all its façade as a learned profession, was in real life a profoundly ignorant occupation.” Dr. Thomas does suggest that we have actually made progress toward “a genuine science”. Yet even though in the years from the 1940s to the 1980s, we have seen the “mechanization of scientific medicine” with its pluses and minuses, “talking with patients remains a critical element.”

Dr. Thomas goes on: “In real life research is dependent on the human capacity for making predictions that are wrong, and on the even more human gift for bouncing back to try again.  Predictions …  are pure guesses. Error is the mode.”

He also confirms an experiment that I tried some years back. “Sabbaticals are designed not for resting but for getting into new ground for a while.” I took my family to rural England for four months in 1978 and to Australia and New Zealand in 1988, writing both periods. Expansions of understanding …

In almost every chapter, the doctor offers challenging insights.

On latent ignorance: “I am as much in the dark as ever.”

On the role of women in family education: “I believe that this is something that women are better at than men.”

On our ability to work together: “It seems to me that there are solid biological advantages in behavior that result in cooperation and collaboration.” He calls this his “Panglossian bias.”

The author’s conclusion: “ … we are, to begin with, the most improbable of all the earth’s creatures, and maybe it is not without hope that we are also endowed with improbable luck.”

Lewis Thomas died in 1993 but I do heartily recommend any and all of his writings, including The Lives of a Cell, The Medusa and the Snail, The Fragile Species, Et Cetera, Et Cetera, and his best title of all, Late Nights Thoughts While Listening to Mahler’s Third Symphony.

What is a pandemic when we have Lewis Thomas to entrance our minds?

Editor’s Note: ‘The Youngest Science: Notes of a Medicine Watcher,’ by Lewis Thomas was published by Viking Press, New York, in 1983.

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, Conn., he now writes book reviews, mostly of non-fiction, a subject which 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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Old Lyme Selectmen Discuss Resolution on Racism Presented by Nosal; Griswold, Kerr Express Reservations

Old Lyme Selectwoman Mary Jo Nosal (File photo)

OLD LYME — At the Sept. 8 Old Lyme Board of Selectmen’s regular meeting, Selectwoman Mary Jo Nosal again raised the question of whether the board would be willing to sign a Resolution on racism, which she noted several other towns in Connecticut have already done.

She had originally introduced the idea with a draft Resolution at the Aug. 8 meeting but it was not discussed further in the Aug. 17 meeting.

Nosal summarized the draft Resolution, which is printed in full below and originated from the Town of Windsor, Conn., noting, “There’s a lot of community support to do something,” and reminding her fellow board members that, “Our nation is talking about this.”

She also emphasized that the discussion was “only a first step,” and that some comments on the wording of the Resolution had already been received.

Nosal also mentioned that when she had first introduced the Resolution, Old Lyme First Selectman Timothy Griswold had expressed a concern about the tone of the document. Selectman Christopher Kerr echoed that opinion when he gave his comments on the Resolution, saying, “I somewhat agree with Tim … it seems like your saying the town is racist.”

Nosal responded immediately, “Where do you see that?” Kerr answered, “It has that tone,” adding, “Maybe there are ways to tone it down.”  Nosal asked Kerr what he would suggest to which he responded, “I don’t know,” saying he would have to read the Resolution again along with a new draft from a different source that Nosal had brought, and see if he could perhaps amend them together.

When his turn came to comment, Griswold said, “It seems to me we’re a small town. I think we have a very good record in our town,” adding he had “trouble” with use of the expression, “Racism is a public health crisis affecting our town and all of Connecticut.”

He stated, “I just don’t see the link like that unless it’s very indirect,” summarizing his opinion as, “I just hesitate to have the board sign onto this … it’s very negative about our country.”

Expanding on his view, Griswold continued with the question, “Can we all do better?” to which he responded firmly, “Yes,” noting, “We all want to endorse the idea of harmony,” while acknowledging, “There are instances where there are terrible situations.”

He concluded, “It seems this is more than we need to do … It’s hard for me to accept this.”

Nosal took a conciliatory tone after Griswold and Kerr had commented, saying, “I think it’s unusual for a board of selectmen in Old Lyme to deal with this. I’m proud of us that we’re facing the fact that it makes us uncomfortable. It’s not an easy subject for any of us to talk about.”

She remarked, “Once we start talking about it and addressing it, it will become better … our society will be better.” She urged the board to keep discussing the subject because, “Our objective is to look at what we can do to make our community healthier.”

Next steps were not agreed specifically but seemed likely to include further review of the wording of the Resolution.

Nosal concluded positively, “I appreciate the board looking at it and considering it … and acknowledge it makes us uncomfortable.”

The following is the DRAFT Resolution that Nosal presented for discussion:

WHEREAS, racism is a social system with multiple dimensions: individual racism that is interpersonal and/or internalized or systemic racism that is institutional or structural, and is a system of structuring opportunity and assigning value based on the social interpretation of how one looks;

WHEREAS race is a social construct with no biological basis; 

WHEREAS racism unfairly disadvantages specific individuals and communities, while unfairly giving advantages to other individuals and communities, and saps the strength of the whole society through the waste of human resources; 

WHEREAS racism is a root cause of poverty and constricts economic mobility; 

WHEREAS racism causes persistent discrimination and disparate outcomes in many areas of life, including housing, education, employment, and criminal justice, and is itself a social determinant of health; 

WHEREAS racism and segregation have exacerbated a health divide resulting in people of color in Connecticut bearing a disproportionate burden of illness and mortality including COVID-19 infection and death, heart disease, diabetes, and infant mortality; 

WHEREAS Black, Native American, Asian and Latino residents are more likely to experience poor health outcomes as a consequence of inequities in economic stability, education, physical environment, food, and access to health care and these inequities are, themselves, a result of racism; 

WHEREAS more than 100 studies have linked racism to worse health outcomes; and 

WHEREAS the collective prosperity and wellbeing of TOWN depends upon equitable access to opportunity for every resident regardless of the color of their skin: 

Now, therefore, be it Resolved, that the TOWN Board of Selectmen

(1) Assert that racism is a public health crisis affecting our town and all of Connecticut; 

(2) Work to progress as an equity and justice-oriented organization, by continuing to identify specific activities to enhance diversity and to ensure antiracism principles across our leadership, staffing and contracting;

(3) Promote equity through all policies approved by the Board of Selectmen and enhance educational efforts aimed at understanding, addressing and dismantling racism and how it affects the delivery of human and social services, economic development and public safety;

(4) Improve the quality of the data our town collects and the analysis of that data—it is not enough to assume that an initiative is producing its intended outcome, qualitative and quantitative data should be used to assess inequities in impact and continuously improve;

(5) Continue to advocate locally for relevant policies that improve health in communities of color, and support local, state, regional, and federal initiatives that advance efforts to dismantle systemic racism;

(6) Further work to solidify alliances and partnerships with other organizations that are confronting racism and encourage other local, state, regional, and national entities to recognize racism as a public health crisis;

(7) Support community efforts to amplify issues of racism and engage actively and authentically with communities of color wherever they live; and

(8) Identify clear goals and objectives, including periodic reports to the Board of Selectmen, to assess progress and capitalize on opportunities to further advance racial equity.

 

 

 

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Old Lyme Zoning Delays Decision on LOL Schools’ Proposed Artificial Athletic Field Pending Drainage Review, ‘It’s All About Drainage’ (Cable)

This image, courtesy of Milone & MacBroom, shows the current field behind Lyme-Old Lyme High School (left) and the proposed synthetic turf field (right.)

OLD LYME — The Old Lyme Zoning Commission listened patiently in their meeting held Monday evening via Zoom to a presentation by representatives from Milone & Macbroom on the proposed synthetic turf multi-purpose field, which Lyme-Old Lyme Schools plan to build to the rear of Lyme-Old Lyme High School. The first part of the meeting constituted a Public Hearing for the project.

The new field, priced at approximately $2.5 million, will be built on top of the existing geothermal system and the presenters agreed the selected contractor would have to perform, “Pre-construction tests to make sure the the geothermal system isn’t compromised.”

They also detailed how, “The premise is that water is going completely through the carpet [the synthetic turf]” and then drained away through a vast system of pipes.

Asked whether there was any danger of pollution from the drained water, the presenter replied, “Because of the way we design the system, the water running off is clearer than the rain going in,” adding, “There’s chemicals in there, but the materials do not ever leach out. We don’t see any environmental impacts.”

He noted that the use of recycled tires for the production of synthetic turf also, “Saves tires going into landfills.”

Asked by commission member Jane Marsh how long the artificial field could be expected to last, the presenter responded, “Eight years is the expected life … I’ve seen up to 14 years. He concluded, “The fields should easily last 12 years.”

When the time comes to replace the field, the presenter explained, “All the infrastructure below the turf [the geothermal system] will remain. Just the turf will be replaced.”

There were no questions or comments from the public and so the commission voted unanimously to close the Public Hearing.

The commission then went on to discuss the project as an item of business in their regular monthly meeting and that was when things took an unexpected turn. Long-term commission member Jane Cable stated, “I don’t feel competent to evaluate the drainage. This should automatically have gone to Tom [Metcalf – the Town Engineer.]”

Commission member Maria Martinez agreed with Cable saying, “We should do due diligence and double-check.”

Cable said pragmatically, “It’s all about drainage.”

Marsh added, “My breath is being taken away by the cost of this thing,” but Martinez reminded her that the commission’s job is not to consider the cost of the project but rather, “We have to approve [its] safety.”

Members of the commission concurred that the Old Lyme Inland Wetlands Commission had already approved the project but with a condition relating to the permeability of the walkway. They requested that Land Use Coordinator Dan Bourret should send the plans to Metcalf for his review, to which Bourret agreed.

Cable then proposed a motion, “… that we put our decision off to next month to get the review from Tom.” The motion to continue the discussion to next month’s meeting was unanimous.

Editor’s Note: Visit this link for more information about the proposed synthetic turf field, 

 

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Meet a (Hula-Hooping) Moose in Cushman’s Enchanting Story of Being ‘Soaked’

LymeLine.com publisher Olwen Logan reads ‘Soaked’ by Abi Cushman to her grandson, William Logan, who assisted significantly with this book review.

“Soaked” is quite simply an enchanting book that captivates and delights youngsters from the first page to the last.

I can say that with some authority since I ‘tested’ the book on my two-year-old grandson William and his response to it was nothing short of remarkable. He not only asks for the book by name every time he sees me but also  — or so his parents tell me — at almost every bedtime.

Moreover, he has renamed it!

And the reason he did that is because the only word in the whole book that he didn’t understand was, by coincidence, its title … ‘Soaked.’ By the way, the inside cover states the book is for, “Age 3 and up,” but William, at two, lapped it up.

When I finished reading ‘Soaked’ to him for the very first time, William desperately wanted to hear it again and, without hesitation, asked me to read the “Rain Book,” which is, in fact, a wonderfully apt title.

That is now what it will be known as henceforward in our family since we took a copy on a family vacation recently and by the end of the week, every member of the family had read the ‘Rain Book’ to William multiple times!

First-time author-illustrator Abi Cushman of Niantic, Conn. is an extraordinarily talented illustrator. (Full disclosure, I know Abi, but primarily in a professional capacity.) Although she remains remarkably unassuming about the fact she is now a published author, she should be extremely proud of that achievement — and perhaps even more so, of the beautiful book that is the root of her new-found fame.

She has created four characters, Bear, Badger, Bunny and Moose, whom you feel you’ve known your whole life … in the same way that we all know Winnie-the-Pooh. Their respective personas come through loud and clear though Cushman uses very little narrative to convey them.

Moose is far and away William’s favorite character in the story.

Well, of course he is … who couldn’t be drawn to a Hula-Hooping moose? You’ve never heard of a Hula-Hooping moose? Neither had we, but he fits so perfectly into this delightful story, you take him completely for granted as though it’s perfectly normal for a moose to have a set of hula-hoops at which he is adept at using.

The hula-hoops are, in fact, key to this simple tale, cleverly linking its various elements and locations. The story travels from sad scenes in the depressing rain through to Bear’s dry cave (where there is insufficient space for Moose to hula-hoop, but he does it anyway!) followed by the rescue of a hula-hoop from a high branch (which involves a great deal of precarious standing on shoulders) and then the jovial collapse of the tower of animals.

All the animals, who topple together after successfully retrieving the hula-hoop, surface cheerfully in a mass of water and are thoroughly “soaked.” This jolly scene leads to the idea that Bear should try hula-hooping.

Now Bear, who is the story narrator, is a pretty grumpy fellow and anxious to maintain his negative outlook on the world, regardless of what befalls him. He does not want to enjoy hula-hooping but it is abundantly clearly from the charming illustrations that Bear takes to it like (and forgive the pun!) a duck to water, urged on by the ever-present, cheery Badger (with the bumble-bee umbrella) and bounce-along Bunny.

There are a variety of morals that can be drawn from this simple story and the reader can choose which one is most age-appropriate. It could be a deeper one like the value of true friends or the strength of teamwork, or simply that you don’t have to have sun to have fun.

There are other possibilities too and another strangely wonderful thing about this book is that there are many places in the text where you can fill in the story details as you wish, making it possible to create new twists to the story with every reading

I won’t be a spoiler and divulge the surprising ending to the story.

You’ll have to buy — or borrow — the book for yourself. And I strongly recommend you do just that because this is a very special book, which I predict will stand the test of time … perhaps even lasting as long as that beloved Pooh!  The illustrations on their own justify the purchase of the book.

This may be the humble Cushman’s first book but I’m confident it certainly won’t be her last. I sincerely hope we’ll soon be hearing more about the adventures of Bear, Badger, and Bunny and not forgetting, that Hula-Hooping Moose!

Editor’s Note: Visit Abi Cushman’s website for more information about the book and details of where to purchase it.

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Letter to the Editor: It’s Time for Change, Rubino Will Promote Climate of Equality as State Rep.

To the Editor:

I met Dave Rubino last year while working on a local election in Old Lyme.  You learn a lot about a person when you are knocking on doors and phone calling together.  I was immediately drawn to his passion to serve the people.  As a Human Rights Lawyer, who has work in the US and overseas, he has a breadth of knowledge and experience about creating a climate of equality that we desperately need in our country right now.

I realize we don’t have term limits, but I only wish we did.  I do believe that even the best intentioned politician loses their passion after a certain amount of time in office.  Although well meaning, I do believe Devin Carney has lost his edge for serving the people and putting his heart into his responsibilities as the State Representative.  It is through the ballot box that we can enact term limits and bring a fresh perspective to and energy for our district state representative. seat.  The year 2020 is a time for change.  I trust Dave Rubino and I plan to support him with my vote on Election Day.  I hope you will join me!

Sincerely,

Kathleen Tracy,
Old Lyme.

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Nibbles: Gotta Love ‘The Apple Lover’s Cookbook’!

As I drive around our beautiful shoreline, I think about what is inland rather than the seashore. Apples will be everywhere, along with cider and cider donuts.

I opened Yankee magazine last week and saw that Amy Traverso, Yankee’s senior food editor, has written a new edition of The Apple Lover’s Cookbook, replete with more sweet and savory recipes, more festival venues and new kinds of apples.

In Yankee, there are recipes for cardamom-apple soufflé pancakes, apple-cranberry slab pie with cranberry drizzle, apple-plum cobbler and sausage, apple and squash sheet-pan supper with fragrant herb oil.

I may not get the new one, published early this month, but my daughter’s birthday is in late September and she deserves this cookbook.

So do you.

Editor’s Note: ‘The Apple Lover’s Cookbook’ by Amy Traverso was published Sept. 1, 2020 by W.W. Norton and Company.

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COVID-19 Case Numbers Unchanged in Old Lyme, Lyme; Totals Remain at 26 in OL (Including 2 Fatalities), 8 in Lyme

Photo by CDC on Unsplash

LYME/OLD LYME — This past Friday afternoon, Sept. 11, Ledge Light Health District (LLHD) issued their weekly report of COVID-19 cases by town for all the towns in the health district they cover. Both Lyme and Old Lyme are included in that district.

The numbers reported on Friday (Sept. 11) showed no change from those we reported earlier in the day, when we said Old Lyme had a total of 26 cases including two fatalities while Lyme has a total of eight.

On Friday, Sept. 4, Ledge Light Health District (LLHD) reported two new COVID-19 cases in Old Lyme and one in Lyme. The new cases in Old Lyme are both male, ages 74 and 61 respectively. The new case in Lyme is a 21-year-old female.

The number of surviving cases in Old Lyme ranges in age from 21- to 82-years-old and is equally divided between males and females with 12 of each. The two fatalities were a 61-year-old female and an 82-year-old male.

The eight cases in Lyme comprise three females and five males ranging in age from one- to 68-years-old.

To demonstrate the growth in confirmed COVID-19 cases in Old Lyme, the table below is a summary of the cases that LymeLine.com has reported since March 31 when the first case was announced and also includes both fatalities.

DateCumulative no. of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Old Lyme
March 311
April 44
April 96
April 107
April 1510
April 1812
May 113
May 1515
May 2616
June 817
June 1018
June 1419
June 2221
June 2422
July 1722
July 2823
Sept. 224
Sept. 426
Sept. 1527

Details of all Old Lyme’s confirmed surviving cases to date are as follows:

  1. Female, age 64
  2. Female, age 21
  3. Male, age 27
  4. Female, age 53
  5. Female, age 61
  6. Female, age 29
  7. Male, age 40
  8. Male, age 53
  9. Female, age 60
  10. Male, age 45
  11. Female, age 20
  12. Female, age 43
  13. Female, age 48
  14. Male, age 70
  15. Male, age 67
  16. Female, age 68
  17. Male, age 50
  18. Male, age 21
  19. Female, age 48
  20. Female, age 34
  21. Male, age 20
  22. Male, age 28
  23. Male, age 74
  24. Male, age 61

Old Lyme First Selectman Timothy Griswold has previously noted that the 21-year-old female with a confirmed case (#2 in the list immediately above) was tested in Florida, but used an Old Lyme address although she does not live here. Because she gave the Old Lyme address, Griswold said that LLHD must report her as an Old Lyme resident.

Gender and age details of the confirmed cases in Lyme to date are:

  1. Male, age 34
  2. Female, age 61
  3. Female, age 34
  4. Male, age 1
  5. Male, age 34
  6. Male, age 20
  7. Male, aged 68
  8. Female, age 21

Residents and businesses are urged to access up-to-date information regarding the pandemic from reputable sources including the Ledge Light Health District website (www.llhd.org), Facebook (@LedgeLightHD), Twitter (@LedgeLightHD), and Instagram (@LedgeLightHD).

Editor’s Note: Ledge Light Health District (LLHD) serves as the local health department in southeast Connecticut for the towns of Lyme and Old Lyme as well as East Lyme, Groton, Ledyard, New London, North Stonington,  Stonington and Waterford. As a health district, formed under Connecticut General Statutes Section 19a-241, LLHD is a special unit of government, allowing member municipalities to provide comprehensive public health services to residents in a more efficient manner by consolidating the services within one organization.

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Volunteers Invited to Join CT River Conservancy’s ‘Source to Sea’ Cleanup Through September

GREENFIELD, MA/ LYME, CT/ OLD LYME, CT– (From a press release sent by the CRC)  Registration is now open for the Connecticut River Conservancy’s (CRC) Source to Sea Cleanup. This annual event, now in its 24th year, has grown into one of the largest river cleanups in the country.

The CRC invites volunteers to safely continue the tradition of getting dirty for cleaner rivers in September. The banks of the Connecticut River in Lyme and Old Lyme have both been Cleanup sites in previous years.

For more information, event safety guidelines, or to register for the Cleanup visit www.ctriver.org/cleanup.

“The Source to Sea Cleanup strengthens community while cleaning up our rivers and streams. It’s an opportunity for you to make a difference,” says CRC Executive Director Andrew Fisk. “When people help clean their rivers, they make lasting connections with each other and with their rivers.”

The annual Source to Sea Cleanup is a river cleanup coordinated by CRC in all four states of the 410-mile Connecticut River basin (NH, VT, MA, CT).

This year’s Cleanup continues throughout September, rather than the typical two-day event, for better social distancing of volunteers. “We’re excited to work with volunteers to tackle trash, even during the pandemic. We’ve redesigned the event to keep everyone as safe as possible while still making a difference for cleaner rivers,” says Stacey Lennard, CRC Cleanup Coordinator.

Each fall, thousands of volunteers of all ages and abilities clean the Connecticut River and its tributaries on foot or by boat. Volunteers remove trash along rivers, streams, parks, boat launches, trails and more. In 2019, more than 3,600 volunteers hauled nearly 67 tons of trash from riverbanks and waterways across our four river states.

Volunteers remove everything from recyclable bottles and cans, fishing equipment and food waste to tires, televisions, and refrigerators. To date, volunteers have removed more than 1,167 tons of trash from our rivers.

“There are lots of ways to get involved,” continues Lennard. “Volunteers can report a trash site in need of cleaning, organize and register your own local cleanup group, or be a #RiverWitness on social media. Join us to celebrate our collective efforts – together yet apart – at a virtual Source to Sea Shindig on Sept. 30 to wrap up the Cleanup.”

New this year, CRC added #RiverWitness to help people connect with each other online through their shared concern for and appreciation of our rivers. Take a photo or video when you are at the river, participating in the Source to Sea Cleanup or enjoying time outside. Or make art inspired by river beauty or river pollution. Share on social media, include #RiverWitness and tag Connecticut River Conservancy.

If you’re not on social media, share images on CRC’s website: www.ctriver.org/riverwitness. Your images will be added to an online mosaic photo display and video. Select images will be used to call on decision-makers to enact trash solutions to keep trash out of our rivers.

If your group wants to get involved but needs a cleanup site, if you have questions, or if you know of a trash site in need of cleaning, contact CRC’s Cleanup Coordinator Stacey Lennard at cleanup@ctriver.org.

Learn more about the event at www.ctriver.org/cleanup.

Since 1952, the CRC has been the voice for the Connecticut River watershed, from source to sea. They collaborate with partners across four states to protect and advocate for your rivers and educate and engage communities. They bring people together to prevent pollution, improve habitat, and promote enjoyment of your rivers and streams. Healthy rivers support healthy economies.

To learn more about CRC, or to make a contribution to help protect your rivers, visit www.ctriver.org.

Thoughts from CRC Executive Director Andrew Fisk on the national trash problem

“After cleaning up 1,167 tons of trash over the past 23 years, it’s clear that repeated cleaning is not the solution to our trash problem,” says CRC Executive Director Andrew Fisk. “Consumers need to avoid single use items. And it’s time for the businesses who created and have been profiting from this trash to now help solve the problem through fundamental redesign of how our products are made and disposed of.”

The CRC insists we need to redesign our economy so there isn’t waste in the first place and that it is time businesses step up voluntarily to do the right thing by offering more sustainable, reusable, recyclable, and compostable options. “As individuals, we should always properly dispose of and recycle our waste,” continues Fisk. “And it’s time that corporations also take responsibility for their role in trashing our rivers.” 

As consumers, we have been trained by businesses to rely on unnecessary disposable and single-use plastics. Meanwhile, businesses and manufacturers are profiting by making these products out of cheap, petroleum-based plastic that is harmful and doesn’t easily break down. Producers and manufacturers then pass the responsibility and disposal costs for the products they make to the consumers, which lead to litter and polluted rivers.  

According to CRC, the best way businesses and corporations can cut down on their products becoming litter in our rivers is to offer more reusable options, like coffee mugs and drink cups. Additionally, bio-plastics are emerging as a promising alternative to plastic made from fossil fuels.

There are plenty of eco-friendly cups and dishware items on the market that businesses should be using. These new plastics are compostable, break down in the marine environment as food, are made from waste, and are made with less energy and environmental impact than traditional petroleum plastics.  

“We all have a responsibility to solve this problem,” says Fisk. “We are responsible as consumers to make good choices in how we purchase and dispose of products. Manufacturers, businesses, and government are also responsible and it’s time they do their part.”

Fisk continues, “By working together, we can make a real difference for our rivers. These ideas are going to take time, decades even. And we’ll keep at it as long as it takes. But our rivers need change now.”  

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