When spiders, mostly of the daddy long legs variety, appear in my house I catch them in a drinking glass and carry them outside, or if it’s cold I set them loose in the basement. My let-live attitude results in our house getting a bit webby. Lately I’ve been on a heightened mission to clean up my act; that is, to dust away every last cobweb festooned across doorways, windows and picture frames. Unsightly clutter must be banished before holiday decorations go up. Where’s the sense in accentuating dust and disorder with fairy lights? These domestic exertions make my husband and son crazy. Me, bustling from room to room, telescoping dust mop in hand, while they’re trying to read or watch TV, is just plain irritating. Even Chance, our dog, hides when I get out the vacuum cleaner.After church services on Sunday our friends Patria and Cam Pacis asked if Don and I planned to attend the holiday dinner happening at the firehouse later that afternoon. Every year around this time the Montauk Fire Department and Lions Club host a festive dinner for all Montauk senior citizens. Actually, I hadn’t considered it and we never attended in the past. For our first twenty or so years in Montauk we were just plain too young. For the last several years I’ve convinced myself I’m still too young, if you know what I mean. It takes an attitude adjustment for Don and me to accept that we’re actually a tad overdue.
“I’ll say one thing, Vicky,” Patria said when I explained I had too much to do. “Cam and I are in this just for the fun. That’s what life’s about, having fun.” Perhaps Patria intuited my plan to clean house and put up holiday decorations all afternoon. Somehow, she convinced me to attend.
It was a beautiful party. At a glance, I estimated the firehouse garage area was filled to capacity, which meant more than 200 young-at-heart folks were present. When we arrived most of the tables were already full. The tables, covered with festive red, white and green tablecloths and placemats, were set up in long rows so everyone was seated together in convivial style. There were centerpieces of evergreen branches stuck into birch logs complete with lighted red candles and Christmas ornaments gracing the long tables. How cozy the gigantic space looked!
Music was provided by another friend, Sarah Conway, along with her band, the Playful Souls, including Dan Koontz on keyboard, Joe Lauro on bass and Geoff Blythe on sax. A highlight was when a favorite Montauk resident, Pat DeRosa, came up onto the stage and played his saxophone along with Mr. Blythe. They had a “duel of the two saxophonists.” It turned out, Mr. DeRosa was celebrating his 94th birthday that day! Also present, and enjoying the performance from a stage-side table were his daughter, Patricia DeRosa Padden, and lovely young granddaughter Nicole DeRosa Padden. What a memorable occasion!
It was heartwarming to see such large numbers of the Montauk community present at this wonderful party, including many familiar faces among the fire department’s Ladies Auxiliary working as waiters and serving from the delectable holiday style buffet. Boy Scouts from Troop 136 greeted guests and assisted with seating as well as helped to serve.
By the way, if you’d like to sample some holiday cheer, Sarah Conway, this time with her entire band, will be back at the Stephen Talkhouse on Friday, December 18, performing a great collection of little known Christmas gems, rock, country, blues and gospel. The show starts around 8 p.m. with a cover charge of $15. Call (631) 267-3117 for more information.
The generous folks at the Montauk Firehouse have invited Santa to return this Sunday, December 13, from 1 to 3 p.m. Bring your wish list and have a last minute chat with Santa after he arrives on his fire truck!
Also this Sunday, there’s the ever inspirational Family Christmas Concert at St. Therese of Lisieux Church, starting at 4 p.m. Adult and children’s choirs, recorder ensemble and soloists shine in this holiday performance guaranteed to gladden your heart. Special guest musicians, Bob Stern on violin and Peter Martin Weiss on bass, will be there to add to the merriment. Cookies and refreshments served afterward. Admission is a contribution to the food pantry.
Weather permitting, Montauk Youth is fielding a Parents vs. 5th through 8th grade girls and boys Holiday Soccer Match at Lion’s Field, this Saturday, December 12, at 11 a.m. To register, please email Matt Midson at mmidson@gmail. Soccer is 11 players per side; larger number of players registered enables rotation of players. Registration forms and sign up are also available at the Montauk School front desk.
At The Library
“Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me” is this week’s free Friends of the Library movie presentation on Wednesday evening, starting at 7 p.m.
Courtesy of Guild Hall, the Montauk Library is offering a $15 discounted group ticket to a re-broadcast of Mozart’s “The Magic Flute” at Guild Hall on Saturday, December 19, at 1 p.m. This delightful special holiday production by the Metropolitan Opera was designed by Julie Taymor (“Lion King”) for family audiences. It’s a great way to introduce opera to kids! Please sign up and pay at the Montauk Library’s circulation desk by today, December 9, or, the sooner the better, to help library events director Carolyn Balducci make arrangements.