The Pedicure

Lots of things can be addictive. There are, of course, the most common like booze and drugs – legal and otherwise. There are food addicts, exercise addicts, and gambling is a big one for some people. I guess just about anything can become an addiction for someone somewhere on the planet. Mine is getting pedicures.

When I was a little girl, my mother taught me how to groom my nails. She was a big believer in teaching proper hygiene techniques at an early age and then vigorously monitoring the activity until achieved to perfection by her children. Every part of the body needed to be cared for in specific ways and that included keeping one’s nails neat and tidy at all times.

Before I learned how to trim my nails myself, it was a weekly torture to endure my mother’s treatments. She’d hoist my little arm underneath her large bicep, pinning it against her torso so escape was impossible. There was never any bloodletting, but the close croppings always left my fingers a bit sore at the quick. When it came to toenails, however, she was amazingly gentle by comparison.

She used the same wrestler’s hold on legs as she did on arms but was careful not to make a wrong move. She wasn’t risking an unintended or intentional kick to the jaw.

As I grew up, I practiced my nail technician skills on my mother’s hands and feet, always employing tender touches to please her after a day of cleaning and cooking for her brood. The application of floral scented lotions on her work-weary paws and claws gave her comfort.

From the hours I spent tending to her feet, I could have been certified in all 50 states as a professional by the time I was 15. Instead, I was her in-home unpaid handmaiden, if you will, happily toting basins of warm water into the living room where she would soak her feet while watching her favorite TV program and smoking a Winston.

For many years, keeping my toenails neat and tidy was good enough for me. Then I had my first pedicure.

I’d like to say that I was a teenager or young adult when I first experienced a professional pedicure, but that wouldn’t be the truth. Years ago, nail salons were foreign in our little patch. Big city hair salons may have offered this type of exotic service, but not our neighborhood hairdresser. Oh no, she cut hair, applied blue rinses to white hair, and gave the tightest permanent waves money could buy. But taking care of nails was done at home.

Today, our modern societies sport nail salons on every corner. Such evocative signage as “Paradise Nail Salon,” “Supreme Nail Emporium,” or “Hot Nails” dot the landscape and have become an industry unto itself. You can even go into your local big-box low-priced retailor and, before you buy toilet paper – 100 rolls for five dollars – you can get your nails lacquered. No, I was well into my adulthood before I could cost justify spending money on nails I could take care of myself. Call it Yankee thrift. But the reality is, I was as close to being a professional as one can get without graduating from beauty school.

Then something totally unexpected happened. The company for who I was working took a bunch of management types on a corporate retreat. Part of the program offered the females in our group day spa treatments. Cost was no object. We could select any of the numerous services from simple manicures to full body massages and, yes, pedicures.

It would be almost obscene for me to describe the pleasure I felt as I plunged by tired dogs into a fragrant pool of softly bubbling warm water, dressed in a plush terrycloth robe several sizes too large, surrounded by aroma therapy, dim lights, and non-verbal attendants. Oh, the rapture divine. In that hour, I became a pedicure addict. Cost be damned. I’d sell my costume jewelry at a yard sale to pay for this kind of legal euphoria. Thusly baptized in eucalyptus waters, I’ve never looked back.

In my mother’s later years, whenever I would visit her at the nursing home, we would often laugh at the money I spent having my feet professionally cared for. In her mind, it was criminal – in mine, it was therapy.

I never really stopped taking care of my mother’s feet. As she sat in her wheelchair, immobilized by illness, I gladly massaged her feet with lovely creamy lotion as she drifted in and out of wakefulness. She’d softly say, “That feels so good.” I’d say, “You taught me how to do this, Ma.” She’d reply, “It’s a good thing.”

By Marilou Newell


Mattapoisett Recreation Fall Programs

MATTREC is now accepting registrations for fall programs:

Fitness, Fun & Games: Ages 3-5 yrs. Tuesdays, 4:15 – 5:00 pm, September 22 to November 10 at the Center School Gymnasium.

Do you have a young child who loves to be active and needs a new program to expend some energy and make new friends? Instructor Lynda Jacobvitz will help them explore fitness, creative movement and yoga through music, games and storytelling. Props such as hoops, parachutes, tunnels and puppets will be used to stimulate imagination and encourage movement. Cost is $80 for the eight-week session.

Yoga: Ages 6-10 yrs. Tuesdays, 3:00 – 4:00 pm, September 22 to November 10 at the Center School Gymnasium.

Certified Yoga instructor Lynda Jacobvitz will teach your child age appropriate yoga poses, basic stretching exercises and creative movement to promote strength, flexibility and coordination. Breathing and visualization techniques will teach kids how to focus, relax, develop self control and improve concentration. Cost is $80 for the eight-week session.

Bay State Gymnastics Academy: Ages 5 & up. Fridays, 3:15 – 4:15 pm, 4:15 – 5:15 pm, 5:15 – 6:15 pm. Gymnastics and tumbling offered each session. September 11 to November 6 (no class October 23) at the Old Hammondtown Gym.

Join Bay State Gymnastics Academy for gymnastics and/or tumbling classes at Old Hammondtown School. Classes are perfect for beginner gymnasts as well as students with previous gymnastics experience. Qualified instructors will work individually with each gymnast on all four gymnastic events: Floor Tumbling, Balance Beam, Bars and Vaulting. Tumbling classes are designed for any gymnast or cheerleader interested in working solely on their floor tumbling skills. Cost is $140 for the eight-week session.

Mattapoisett Historical Commission

A house is more than a home, it holds stories. Mattapoisett Historical Commission invites you to tell us the story of your home. Maybe you live in a home with a long history, or a home with unique qualities, or a home that is haunted. Maybe your summer residence has been in your family for decades. Share your home’s story with the MHC and we’ll post it on the town’s website Just send your home’s story via email to and include a picture of the house. Please also include your contact information.

Church’s Preferred Plan Passes

Their appeal of the original building permit for the 16 Cottage Street condominium plan was denied, but members of the First Congregational Church of Marion got what they asked for on August 13 – a new, better plan for the condo development next door that was more pleasing to the appellants.

Sippican Preservation, LLC, headed by Christian Loranger, was initially issued a building permit for the plan, which fell within the Town’s Zoning Bylaws. Members of the church appealed that plan, but finding no standing for the appeal, the Marion Zoning Board of Appeals denied the appeal. Meanwhile, church members and architect Bill Saltonstall had been working with Loranger on a plan more palatable to the church members; however, this plan then required a Special Permit, which the ZBA did grant on August 13.

“My perception is … that the builder has, by right, a plan that he can do what he wants,” said ZBA Chairman Eric Pierce. “He has worked with the neighbors…. If we are to protect the town’s interest, we ought to listen to the neighbors.”

Deeming the matter within the purview of the ZBA and saying the new plan was still slightly lessening the non-conformity of the existing structure, Pierce gave the nod and welcomed a motion to approve.

“I agree that he’s worked very well [with the neighbors],” said ZBA member Kate Mahoney.

There was some question a couple of weeks ago about whether ZBA member Betsy Dunn, who is also a church member, former church treasurer, and choir director, and new ZBA member Joanna Wheeler, church clerk, should have recused themselves from the appeal matter and publically stated their association with the church.

All members, including Dunn, voted in favor of the Special Permit.

Since the last meeting, Joanna Wheeler has resigned from the ZBA.

Also during the meeting, the ZBA approved the Special Permit request from Lisa and Ben Proctor of 69 East Avenue, who plan to raze and rebuild the rear deck of the existing single-family house and build a second addition to the home.

“It doesn’t do anything but improve the neighborhood,” said Pierce.

And seeing none of the abutters present to oppose the project, the vote to approve was unanimous.

The next meeting of the Marion Zoning Board of Appeals is scheduled for August 27 at 7:30 pm at the Marion Town House.

By Jean Perry


Free Movie – Last Tuesday in August

Woman in Gold (PG-13, 1 hr. 50 min.) will be shown at the Mattapoisett CoA Senior Center, Center School, 17 Barstow St., on Tuesday, August 25 at 12:00 noon. This free movie is sponsored by the Friends of the Mattapoisett CoA.

Woman in Gold is based on a true story of an elderly Jewish woman’s journey to the heart of the Austrian establishment and to the U.S. Supreme Court. Sixty years after she fled Vienna during World War II, she starts her quest to reclaim her heritage and to obtain justice for what happened to her family as she seeks to retrieve family possessions seized by the Nazis. Along her journey, she has to confront difficult truths about the past.

You get two pizza slices for only $2 prepaid. Pay for your pizza at the CoA Senior Center by Monday, August 24. Also call the Senior Center at 508-758-4110 to reserve your seat – so we know how many chairs to set up.

Taber Library’s Book Sale

To the Editor:

Thank you to everyone who helped make Marion’s Elizabeth Taber Library’s 2015 Book Sale a success. Led by Nita Howland and Sue Schwager, who have tirelessly worked and promoted the event for many months (as well as many years), the Board of Trustees wanted to take this opportunity to thank all that helped this year. Remember, this is our library’s biggest fund-raiser and you all made it happen. Thank you to Nancy Rolli, Michelle Sampson, Charlene Sperry, Karilon Grainger, Marthe Soden, Betty Broome, Carol Houdelette, Diana Markle, Zora Turnbull Lynch, Beth Marsden, Kathy Feeney, Nicole Davignon, Gary Sousa, Stephen Carnazza and John Rolli. I also wanted to thank the Town of Marion’s Department of Public Works, who are always there to help transport our books back and forth from the book sale. Thank you all for making this a success. It is truly a town-wide initiative.

The Elizabeth Taber Library is funded in only two-thirds part by the Town of Marion, and the remaining one-third is through generous donations throughout the year and this book sale. Our goal for the library is for it to be much more than just a place to go check out books, but also a place to participate, face to face, in community activities in a way we can’t do over the internet. We want to make our library the center, or heartbeat if you will, of our town. With an energetic and intelligent Elisabeth “Libby” O’Neill at the helm, this library is going places. You have all helped us to continue to get closer to that goal, and we look forward to more initiatives in the future to keep our library progressing toward an even brighter future.

Jay Pateakos, President

ETL Board of Library Trustees


The views expressed in the “Letters to the Editor” column are not necessarily those of The Wanderer, its staff or advertisers. The Wanderer will gladly accept any and all correspondence relating to timely and pertinent issues in the great Marion, Mattapoisett and Rochester area, provided they include the author’s name, address and phone number for verification. We cannot publish anonymous, unsigned or unconfirmed submissions. The Wanderer reserves the right to edit, condense and otherwise alter submissions for purposes of clarity and/or spacing considerations. The Wanderer may choose to not run letters that thank businesses, and The Wanderer has the right to edit letters to omit business names. The Wanderer also reserves the right to deny publication of any submitted correspondence.

Record Highs and Lows for the Country Fair

It’s quiet now on Pine Street in Rochester. The roaring of engines, the buzzing of chainsaws, and the loud and rowdy country music have been replaced by the sound of crickets, remaining only in the echoes of our minds. The fairgrounds are empty, except for maybe a few scattered skeletons of the fair’s infrastructure, some tire tracks in the dirt, and a volunteer or two finishing the remainder of the cleanup after another Rochester Country Fair wrapped up Sunday night.

This year, a lot of new memories were made for area residents and families, a lot of smiles and laughs were had, especially on Thursday, August 13, which saw a record turnout in numbers, says Julie Koczera, co-chairman of the Country Fair Committee.

“The Thursday truck pull went incredibly well,” said Koczera. “It was really extremely well-attended.”

Aaron Norcross Jr. brought in a great crowd, Koczera said. “He did a phenomenal job under the big tent. We have actually invited him back for next year. We want to keep him.”

Looking back over the past weekend, Koczera said the wrestling was one of the highlights, as it usually is, and next year the committee will try to add a cage match in addition to the traditional matches.

“We’re already lining it up,” said Koczera. The fair might be over, but there is no pause between fairs. Just as soon as Sunday night falls, the committee is already starting on next year’s fair.

It wasn’t sunny for the fair for the entire weekend though, figuratively speaking. We all know how sunny it really was Saturday and Sunday and how stinking hot it felt. Koczera said the heat on those two days kept a lot of the crowd at home, in the shade, in their swimming pools, in their air-conditioned homes, and at the beach.

“Saturday and Sunday were not so good,” said Koczera. “So now we’re in the process of asking, how bad did we do? It was equivalent to a rainy weekend,” said Koczera about the heat.

So it was a bit of a tough weekend for the Rochester Country Fair folks. People did turn out for the woodsmen show Sunday afternoon, Koczera said, despite how hot it was beneath the sun sitting on the bleachers.

“You do the best you can, given any weather conditions,” said Koczera, although it was even too hot for the reptiles to come to the fair, so the reptile show had to be canceled. “All things considered, it was still nice to see people show up.”

Koczera said the Country Fair Committee will likely have to hold a couple more fundraising events to make up for the loss caused by the heat because the committee wants to add even more fun events for the kids next year. The fair might not have a carnival or a midway, as Koczera pointed out, but the committee focuses on how to make the fair more fun each year without making it more expensive for the fairgoers.

Despite the weather, the committee pulled off another great year for the Rochester Country Fair. The people on the committee, as well as the volunteers, said Koczera, are what make the fair what it is year after year. Some, Koczera mentioned, even take their vacations from work just so they can help out.

“Without them we’d never get off the ground,” said Koczera, who has served on the Rochester Country Fair Committee since the very first country fair – 16 years ago. “Sometimes I have some tough years, but when you work with such a great committee – friends – we do it for each other and the smiles of all the kids and people that come here. That’s why we come here.”

By Jean Perry

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Solar Farm Poises for ConCom Approval

With multiple jurisdictional authorities between two different towns to contend with, it appeared on August 12 that the Clean Energy Collective solar farm slated for the Clemishaw Property off Tucker Lane might have satisfied the Marion Conservation Commission’s concerns, and will now wait for final ConCom approval once the project clears the Planning Board.

During their July 19 meeting, the commission requested some minor specifications on the plan and a written vegetation management plan for the wetlands at the site. Since then, environmental consultant for the project Mark Arnold devised the management plan and also indicated on the plan the 15-foot “no touch” zone as well as the 30-foot “no build” zone as requested.

Taller trees within the area of wetlands will be lopped down to 10 feet in height, with the trunk and roots left intact. Since the last meeting, the project went before the Rochester Planning Board again, which resulted in the shrinking of the impact area, minimizing grading in that area. Also, a line of shrubs has been added on the Rochester side to aid in screening the Mary’s Pond direction.

As for a vegetation management plan, mowing will occur every six weeks, careful to avoid rainy weather so mower wheels will not disturb the earth at the site. The field, overall, will be left as-is, with selective tree pruning around the perimeter to keep the length of the trees low enough to prevent shadowing on the solar arrays.

“We want to minimize effort to have to get in there and keep it clear,” said Bob Rogers of G.A.F. Engineering.

The applicant requested a continuation until August 26, hoping to secure Marion Planning Board approval by that date.

In other matters, the commission was reluctant to issue a full Certificate of Compliance to Bill Langone of 35 Holly Road after a site visit revealed the existing timber walkway exceeded the scope of its original plan from decades ago with about 15 to 20 additional feet of walkway extending out over the water on a float. Conservation Commission Chairman Norman Hills said the float required a Chapter 91 license from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection.

The next problem, Hills said, was improper and unapproved storage of the float during the offseason, as reflected on overhead satellite imagery photos. Also, there is a tennis court on the site that Hills suspects is located within the wetlands. The age of the tennis court is unknown, although the commission deduced that it must be around 30 years old.

The family that built the tennis court, said Hills, now wants to sell the property but cannot until the Certificate of Compliance is issued.

Hills argued that although there might have been beach erosion over time since initial approval of the timber walkway, the floating walkway would still require a Chapter 91 license.

After further discussion on the tennis court, commission member Stephen Gonsalves suggested the board refrain from “holding their (the property owners’) feet to the fire” over the tennis court.

“It was so long ago,” said Gonsalves. “Thirty years is a long time. Things have changed.” It may have even been built before the Wetlands Protection Act took effect, added Gonsalves.

The commission did determine that any future improvements or repairs to the tennis court would require a filing with the ConCom.

“These gray and sticky areas really frustrate me. They’ve really done nothing wrong. Rules and regulations have changed since then,” said Gonsalves. “But the float … Let’s give them a chance to let them rectify that.” Gonsalves said he would hate to see the sale of the property fall through over a complete denial of the certificate.

The commission decided to issue a partial Certificate of Compliance for the timber walkway only, excluding the float, and plans to send the property owner a letter informing him that any future work done on the tennis court would require Conservation Commission approval.

Also during the meeting, the commission issued a negative determination for the eradication of three isolated areas of phragmites on Planting Island. The commission plans to use this action to destroy phragmites as a data point to determine effective measures to combat phragmites in the future.

Lisa and Benjamin Procter of 69 East Avenue received a negative determination for the demolition of the rear portion of the existing single-family house and the addition of a second story, as well as a front entry porch all within 100 feet of a coastal bank.

Roger Tenglin of 88 Indian Cove Road received a negative determination for the razing of 900 feet of an existing 14,000-square-foot structure, but a positive determination was added since the wetlands lines were not confirmed.

The commission held off on issuing a Certificate of Compliance to Heidi Kostin of 167 Cross Neck Road until the vegetation in the restoration area reestablished itself, possibly next spring.

The Notice of Intent for the Town of Marion to reconstruct a 337-foot long, 4-foot high seawall at Sprague’s Cove was continued until December 9.

The Request for Determination of Applicability for Chuong Pham of 22 Bass Creek Road was continued until September 9.

The next scheduled meeting of the Marion Conservation Commission is September 9 at 7:00 pm at the Marion Town House.

By Jean Perry


Astronomy Program at Plumb Library

The Plumb Library will introduce its new Orion telescope, donated by Mr. John T. Jawor, on Monday, August 24 at 7:30 pm with a “Star Party.” The Aldrich Astronomy Society will instruct attendees on the use of the telescope, then, weather permitting, will take the telescope outside for a viewing. Additional telescopes will be provided. There will be door prizes, and refreshments will be served. This program is intended for the whole family, but will be best for children ages 5 and up. The library is at 17 Constitution Way, Rochester. Pre-registration is requested. To register, call the library at 508-763-8600 or register on the Events Calendar on the web page

New Technology Brings Efficiency to Tri-Town Police

A recent sizeable grant has brought the latest in fingerprinting technology to the three Tri-Town Police Departments, bringing efficiency to a number of aspects of police business, say the three chiefs.

The towns each received a grant from the Massachusetts Sex Offender Registry Board to purchase the latest in digital fingerprinting technology that will make fingerprinting easier to perform, more efficient, less messy, and more reliable.

The advance fingerprint capture devices work entirely differently than the manual inking system. The five fingers of each hand are rolled across a glass plate and scanned and uploaded directly into the system. Under the old manual system, police departments used to send the ink fingerprinted cards thorough the mail to the Plymouth County Sheriff’s Department and to the Mass State Police Department, and these cards were then forwarded to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for county, state, and federal fingerprint checks. The processing time has been slashed considerably and, furthermore, the scanner confirms the quality of the fingerprints before sending them off, something Rochester Police Chief Paul Magee says is an important feature.

“In the old days, we inked people’s fingers,” said Magee. Before, sometimes the inked prints would be sent off and later determined to be incomplete, partial, or smudged, rendering them unusable. “Once you’d fingerprint somebody and you get a bad print, you don’t get another chance…”

Magee said, before, an officer could have a suspect – with additional warrants unknown to the local police department – booked for an arrest of a minor infraction, released under the name given to the police, and probably never found again. But with prints scanned, saved to the database, and sent off electronically to the State Police and Sheriff’s Office, that will no longer happen.

The new technology has also helped out in various other departments, Magee said, including the gun permit department. Since the arrival of the new fingerprinting machine, the backlog of gun permit applications has diminished significantly, said Magee, and the processing of prints for vendors and certain license holders licensed by the Town is more efficient.

The machine was issued mainly for the use of the sex offender registry, with offenders having to re-register with their local police department on an annual basis, which includes photographing the offender and fingerprint matching.

“Printing standards are up to the current level where they should be,” said Magee. “It’s a great piece of equipment. It’s something we could not afford otherwise, with budgets and what they are these days.” Magee called receiving the machine “a big windfall.”

Mattapoisett Police Chief Mary Lyons said gone are the old ink days in Mattapoisett as well.

“It’s a lot cleaner,” said Lyons. “Very clean. So that’s a good thing. And it’s just more efficient.”

Now everything is uploaded from the system, said Lyons, so batches of fingerprints are cleaner, clearer, and easier to read.

“It’s a win-win for everybody,” Lyons said.

Marion Police Chief Lincoln Miller said Marion is also the recipient of the grant to purchase the new fingerprinting equipment.

“We did have an older machine, but it died out so we had to go back to the old ink way of doing things,” said Miller.

The system has not yet been established in Marion, Miller said, but the equipment has arrived and soon he and his officers will receive the required training. The machine will then be put online, and Marion will join Rochester and Mattapoisett in having the latest of fingerprinting technology available.

By Jean Perry