It was the best of summers, it was the worst of summers.

The usual barrage of events left us wondering which way to turn. A philharmonic orchestra or dancing fire-eaters in scarlet leotards one night; a lecture on stock market collapse by a Harvard professor or an exhibition from aboriginal cultures on another?

So much went on that now the recent summer seems buried in the distant past. My calendar is full of notes that serve to jog my memory. On July 18, I wrote, “Meet Mark Jenkins for coffee.” Oh right, we discussed the upcoming Water Tasting at Allen Farm. On July 30, I noted a 2 p.m. wedding. Oh, right! Primo and Mary Lombardi’s daughter, the lovely Nina, got married, which reminds me — the Lombardis bought the L’Elegance building at Circuit and Pennacook avenues with the intention of eventually living upstairs and using the ground floor space as a yoga center. No more procrastinating. As someone who lives across the street, I’ll force myself to attend classes. Also, as someone who lives across the street, I’ll have to discuss with Primo and Mary what to do about upstairs windows. Get curtains? Leave the lights off? Ignore each other? As old buddies, I think we can go with Plan C.

There were other parties and special events such as Featherstone’s birthday banquet on Sept. 6, and in August the Chilmark Book Festival in hungry winds and spitting rain that hardly stopped passionate readers from attending, even as the tents swirled around us.

For me, the August highlight was a visit from my son Charlie from Los Angeles. Even in advance I fretted that the four-night stay would pass into oblivion all too readily, yielding the heartbreak of another parting. But one night stood out so strongly that its memory will live for a long time.

On fireworks night we were invited to John and Sharon Kelly’s to celebrate with food and drinks and a front-row seat on Ocean Park. My mother was visiting, so we parked her on a rocking chair on the porch, while Charlie and I, among a dozen other people, climbed the precarious ladder-like staircase to the tower balcony. Under high cirrus clouds, we watched Roman candles, black cats, killer alligators, absolute evil, and every other kind of firecracker explode across obsidian skies. As Charlie stood beside me at the rail, I continuously sent up thanks for the visit, the fireworks, our fairytale town.

Afterward Charlie said, “That was the best fireworks ever!”

“We always say that!” I reminded him.

He considered this, then crooked his head, “But it really was the best!”

“We always say that too,” I replied, and we both laughed.

We stayed above for awhile, picking out different towers, rooflines, gardens.

As a note to other parents whose grown kids blaze through their homes like firecrackers, alight one moment, fading into darkness the next, that exercise in gratitude was the only practice that helped. In my memory, Charlie and I are eternally there together atop that tower, watching lights pop across the sky. On the other hand, does it take a slew of miraculous events like the Oak Bluffs fireworks, a wine-dark sea, and a Victorian parapet like the one owned by the Kellys to bring it all together? I don’t think so, but maybe.

The kite flying exposition in Ocean Park on Sept. 3 was precious, with kids’ kites floating under blue and gold skies. Holly Alaimo, organizer of the Wind Festival, said: “I didn’t see a single tech gadget all day long — no cell phones, no Blackberries, no laptops. I never thought in this day and age that was possible!”

Some very sad news from the library: The warm and lovely Anita Parker died last Friday, Sept. 9. A condolence book sits on the library counter where friends and acquaintances can sign in and leave a comment; the book will be passed along to Anita’s family. She was thankfully out and about and putting in part-time hours at the library almost until the very end. She died at home surrounded by family. God speed, Anita, you were a light in our lives going back to the days of the original library in town.

On Tivoli Day, tomorrow, from 8 to 10 a.m., a pancake breakfast will be held at the Trinity Parish House in Oak Bluffs, across from the Tabernacle. The cost is $8 for adults, $5 for children, with proceeds going to sponsor a walker for the Boston Avon Breast Cancer Walk and for the ministries of the United Methodist Churches of the Vineyard. For more information call 508-693-4424.

It’s closet-clearing time, and not a moment too soon! Electronic disposal day will take place on Oct. 1 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the grounds of Martha’s Vineyard Community Services across from the high school. Scrounge up old toasters, hair dryers, refrigerators, tape recorders, etc. Proceeds will benefit Community Services.

Finally, on Saturday, Sept. 17 at 6 p.m. at the Federated Church in Edgartown, the Martha’s Vineyard Ecumenical Youth Group will kick off a fundraiser including a Southern dinner and auction. There is no fee. A slide show presentation will highlight the group’s mission work in Tennessee last July.