One thing I love about our house on Chappy is that although we are tucked well into the woods, we can often hear the ocean. The waves are particularly audible in the winter, when no leaves remain on the trees to block the current of sound. It is like holding a seashell up to your ear, nature’s white noise machine; a reminder of the wildness that is ever-present on the island.

Some days we follow the sound, jostling down a few pot-holed dirt roads and out to Wasque. On windy winter afternoons, we emerge from the truck only briefly. We lean into the gusts, hands tucked snugly into coat pockets. Sometimes the braver of us dashes down to the waves’ edge for a scoop of salt water to gargle or to taunt the fates with dry toes. We shout into the wind, energized by the light, the space, the crashing of waves. Ducks bob in rough water; sometimes a seal emerges to nod his hello. Cheeks turn rosy, ears begin to burn. As the light wanes and the sun dips below the cold horizon (far too early on these winter afternoons), it is time to return home.

For the past several years, a number of Chappy residents have released bobwhite quail in the hopes of decreasing the tick population and reintroducing a species that used to be prevalent on the island. For those hoping to release quail again this year, Lindsay Allison says John Tuomala, the man who raises and delivers the birds, is currently out of the country and does not yet need deposits. He hopes to return to his home in Wareham by the end of February. The birds are delivered once they are 10 to 12 weeks old, mature enough to forage and survive on their own in the wild. For more information, you can contact John at

Earlier this year, the Edgartown selectmen appointed a steering committee of Chappy residents to address concerns raised regarding the Chappy Ferry. This committee is comprised of RIck Schifter (chair), Rick Biros, Bill Brine, Peter Getsinger, John Dropick, James Hagerty, Sally Snipes, Dana Strayton, Tom Tilgman and Peter Wells. Committee members recently created an online survey to better understand the needs and usage of ferry users. They are asking all residents and regular Chappy Ferry riders to participate in this survey. All information will be kept confidential. Email addresses are requested in order to send out subsequent surveys and to distribute overall results. The survey can be found at