With apologies to Red Sox fans, it would be easy to paraphrase the late, great Yankees catcher/philosopher Yogi Berra to describe the year 2021: déjà vu all over again.


A year unlike any other, 2020 brought with it sweeping change and challenges normally only felt on a geological time scale, all cast in a global pandemic.


The year that began with a historic, emergency birth would be characterized by crisis and history as well, as an Island that has long been immersed in its own past was time and again forced to confront it.


This year may be best remembered as the year Islanders learned just how fragile their bridge to the mainland is. And while the Steamship Authority dominated the news and conversation, it was not the only news.


Reversals of fortune. Institutional turmoil. Environmental stress. This could be a pencil sketch of 2017 in America — and a way to envision the year on Martha’s Vineyard as well.

Ticks and right whales dominated headlines, but 2017 was also filled with quieter environmental stories, from rare plants to visiting birds.