The_Valley_Reporter - Letters Sun, 14 Sep 2014 22:09:46 -0400 en-gb ‘Rudely offended’

To The Editor:

To the woman with long, white hair who drives a silver Honda CR-V with VT plates:

I am a student of whom you rudely insulted at the four corners near East Warren Community Market. Myself, along with many others, were rudely offended when you pulled up behind the Harwood bus, making a very tight corner over the edge of the road and nearly running my friend over, to which all you had to say was:

"I know you're from Harwood, so I know you're probably dumb, but you need to clear out of the road."

Thank you for your display of courtesy and respect. People say to have respect and courtesy toward our elders.

Courtesy is owed, respect is earned, and you displayed a very fine example of neither and lack thereof, when you pulled over telling us to get out of the road, and that because we're from Harwood, that we're stupid.

We're smart enough to know that you were in the wrong. We understand that the four corners is a dangerous stop, but we students were nowhere near either edge; you were over it.

We will choose to respect our elders when they choose to respect us.

Fiona Adams on behalf of the students of Harwood, East Warren


Letters Thu, 11 Sep 2014 15:10:56 -0400
Lack of consideration

To The Editor:

To the person who hit my car in the parking lot at Mad River Park on Wednesday, September 3, 2014, between 5 and 5:30 p.m.:

I want to say "shame on you." Did you think that I would not notice the blue paint/dent/scratches you left on my silver car when you hit my car while dropping your child off for soccer practice at Kingsbury Field? What did you think you would tell your family and friends when they saw the damage and loss of paint on your car? (Well, now they know.)

You did not even have the common decency or consideration to leave a note just to say, "Sorry I hit your car."

You damage someone else's property and then take off so you do not have to be responsible for the damage you caused – nice values you are teaching your children!

This type of action speaks volumes as to the type of person you appear to be: inconsiderate of other people's property and dishonest.

M. Cochran


Letters Thu, 11 Sep 2014 15:09:34 -0400
A clarification on bike lanes

To The Editor:

In response to a recent letter regarding bike lanes along our highways, this is to clarify why bike lanes haven't been as successful as drivers and cyclists would like.

A bill written by the late state representative Lixi Fortna, Warren, which was passed and called for creating bike lanes when roads are rebuilt, has been circumvented by VTrans which has concerns about rights of ways and encroaching on people's property.

Several of us, both in the Legislature and otherwise, also tried unsuccessfully to get more of them. The current director of the Agency of Transportation's Highway Division told me that due to the impact on utilities, private properties, trees, environmental resources, etc., it was not possible; that it was shelved for a few years, then eventually canceled and is still not possible.

There will soon be a paving project between Waitsfield and Waterbury, but it'll only be a thin overlay intended to extend the life of existing pavement. With no opportunity for widening, at least lanes will be painted to emphasize and maximize any available shoulder. Sharing, respect and caution by all are certainly essential.

Judy Larson DiMario


Letters Thu, 04 Sep 2014 14:49:46 -0400
‘An opportunity’

To The Editor:

Six weeks ago, Waitsfield's Bridge Street renovation project was split into two projects. Bridge Street business owners wanted to ensure that the street closure would not occur during prime earning months. The street portion of the project, which includes a new storm drain system, a new retaining wall and other above-ground improvements, was to be scheduled at a more appropriate time. The bridge portion of the project includes repairs to the timbers of the bridge and the concrete abutments supporting it, as well as replacing the bridge walkway. The bridge portion of the project was put out to bid and generated three bids: all rather high – one over $1M. The select board rejected those bids.

It's time to plan for next year and rethink a few things. The storm drain continues to degrade and each rainstorm erodes more of the approach to the bridge. Replacing the drainage system is the part of the entire project that closes the street for a month. It should be tended to ASAP due to the many unknowns about the hidden erosion that will continue until the new system is in place. The storm drain system is underneath everything else. It emerges below the wing wall/retaining wall that will replace the wood walkway at the end of the bridge. The two portions of the project are not as independent of each other as we'd like. The select board will put the bridge work back out to bid, with little or no changes. That work cannot begin before May 15 due to regulations concerning the river.

This is an opportunity to have the drainage work completed before anything else, as it should be. Our covered bridge survived Irene. She can wait until the new drainage system is completed to have her work done. We should do the street work first, starting with the storm drains. Get that out to bid ASAP, so it can happen during the earliest part of the year when Bridge Street businesses are less affected. This whole project is, after all, the first preparation for the Bicentennial celebration of our bridge. Knowing that things often take a little time around here, starting that now, with 19 years to go, seems just about right.

Gordon Sparks
Bridge Street resident


Letters Thu, 04 Sep 2014 14:46:09 -0400
Can you help?

To The Editor:

Saturday's Waitsfield Farmers' Market will soon be over along with local produce, summer warmth and lovely views. Perhaps it's time to remember that many others also sharing our Valley are struggling with earning enough money for their food and shelter. A donation to the Mad River Valley Interfaith Council (MRVIC), which is responsible for our local food shelf at Evergreen Place Senior Center and for our Thanksgiving baskets and children's Christmas gifts as well as emergency help with lodging issues, is the way to keep our community diverse and well-functioning. Donations can be sent to MRVIC, P.O. Box 342, Waitsfield, VT 05673.

From the membership of MRVIC


Letters Thu, 04 Sep 2014 14:44:11 -0400
‘Unbelievable acting’

To The Editor:

The Hartleys have been yo-yoing from New Jersey to Vermont for 26 years. Thank goodness our friends the Wrights called and suggested we go see Vincent in Waitsfield.

What a pleasure. Excellent story, scenic design and unbelievable acting.

The Vermont Festival of the Arts program writes, "It is not to be missed." How true.

If James Briggs performs in another play, sign me up.

Phyllis Hartley
Fayston and Maplewood, NJ


Letters Thu, 28 Aug 2014 14:49:17 -0400
Shoes for Rwanda

To The Editor:

This letter is addressed to:

Dear Mad River residents,

My name is Kyle Dash and I'm a Boy Scout of Troop 700 in Waitsfield. I am currently working on my Eagle project and I need some help performing it. My project is collecting and donating shoes and books to people in Rwanda through a class program at Harwood Union High School. I am looking for shoes that are designed for mountain-like terrain and/or can sustain a lot of wear and tear that are still useable and don't have any holes. Types of books that I'm looking for are educational books for school and learning.

My goal for collecting shoes is about 200 pairs and my goal for collecting books is about 300 books. Any donations would be very appreciated.

Here is a list of books and shoes that I am looking for as a helpful guide: Shoes: sizes toddler-11 in each gender; sneakers, hiking shoes/boots, shoes that revolve around summer, tennis, sandals, Crocs, other shoes that have good traction.

Books: text books, English related books (Shakespeare, for example), dictionaries, encyclopedias, picture books, chapter reading books (grade levels 5-10, literature/English beneficial that are appropriate, have no romance in them, are not comics books, magazines, and are public school appropriate).

Locations to drop off your donations would be at the Fayston, Warren, Waitsfield and Moretown elementary schools and at Harwood Union High School. There will be two boxes labeled each with information on flyers at each school and there will be signs giving directions to where the drop-off is.

Donating will begin on Wednesday, September 24, at 8 a.m. and will end on Friday, October 24, at 7 p.m. at the latest. So, if you have any books and shoes and you are thinking about donating them, please don't wait until the last minute and make sure to mark your calendars. Thank you for your time and effort in making this Eagle project happen. Once again, thank you.

Kyle Dash, Life Scout
Troop 700
Mad River Valley


Letters Thu, 28 Aug 2014 14:46:33 -0400
‘How sad’

To The Editor:

The night before last a person or persons came up our driveway and destroyed our happy moose. He sat at the top of our driveway smiling down at passersby, rain or shine, summer or winter, providing only joy. It seems that vandalism is on the rise in our beautiful valley. How sad that some people only feel that they are having fun if they are destroying others' property.

Ann Murphy


Letters Thu, 21 Aug 2014 15:33:17 -0400
‘Just plain dirty’


To The Editor:

Open letter to the Waitsfield Select Board:

Since appearing before the board on July 14, when it was determined that the select board is the town party responsible for maintenance of the Civil War monument, I have been awaiting information about a decision regarding professional cleaning of the plaque itself and its granite background.

I've now learned that board members, agreeing that leaving this monument "with an older appearance" is appropriate, have decided that no cleaning will be done. It's difficult to convey how disappointed I am at this decision. It would have been a credit to our town to have the monument cleaned, given that the nation is well into the four-year Sesquicentennial commemoration of the 1861-1865 Civil War. As I noted to the board on July 14, Waitsfield is not doing anything to observe the Sesquicentennial, making it an outlier among the hundreds of Vermont communities that are commemorating their towns' Union soldiers in many different ways.

Apart from that "civic pride" argument, the plaque is just plain dirty! There is no record that Waitsfield's monument has been cleaned since its dedication, although the much more recently erected war memorials next to Joslin Memorial Library have undergone professional cleaning.

I find the board's rationale for failing to act inexplicable, and I ask others who agree to contact one or more board members to ask them to reverse this decision.

Alice M. Evans, Ph.D.


Letters Thu, 21 Aug 2014 15:32:12 -0400
‘First-class treatment’

To The Editor:

In our 14 years as summer residents, we have increasingly fallen in love with The Valley: its culture, people and vistas. But as we've aged (we're now 85 and 73, respectively), we've become increasingly concerned about medical care here. What would happen, we worried, if we had a medical emergency?

Unfortunately, that's exactly what happened last Tuesday. Fortunately, we were impressed by the timely, professional treatment from both Mad River Valley Ambulance Service and Central Vermont Medical Center in Berlin. A technician with emergency equipment including oxygen arrived about 12 minutes after our initial call and an ambulance came about 10 minutes later. The EMS team immediately began an IV drip to prevent dehydration and took vital signs every 15 minutes. They stayed in contact with the hospital's emergency department.

We arrived at the hospital less than an hour after our initial call, where a team headed by Dr. Dan Wilson stabilized the patient, who was released three hours later after a series of tests and sent home with a prescription and some excellent advice.

We're extremely grateful for what we consider absolutely first-class medical treatment.

Martin and Susan Tolchin


Letters Thu, 14 Aug 2014 15:46:47 -0400