Kismet Kapers

It is mid August and our streets are overflowing with happy visitors – happy and oblivious and terribly unpredictable. I can empathize with them, looking around in awe and wonder – or not. I have been there myself like in Paris – but not lately. A bicycle bell ringing frantically does not register. “On your left” is heard as a request to move left. I try to guess which way they will move but that’s a 50-50 shot at best. When I explained to someone that I crashed my bike to avoid hitting his group, he joked I should have hit him. Yeah, sure. Then there are the folks young and old, walking or riding with the phone on their mind. 

Kim, Patty, Lee, Sharon and Rose Ann at the Snapper Derby.

But enough rant. Life is good:  the recent power outage in July knocked out my HVAC system so I have no AC but cool and windy weather (as I write) has been a blessing and September is only two weeks away. (But that is indeed another story.) The Kismet Kid’s Snapper Derby, originated 25 years ago in memory of Kismet pioneer Arthur Lem who taught generations of Kismet children to fish, held on Tuesday, Aug. 8, was a great success with 54 children 12 years and under seeking the elusive baby snappers off the bay docks. This is one of Kismet’s favorite events, sponsored by every business and service in town. The kids got logo T-shirts, lunch, trophies for all, and prizes for individual fishing prowess. Fred Chall Marine Supply, a new corporate sponsor, donated bait, chum and goodie bags with snapper gear. A dozen or more returning volunteers, including Warren and Lee Lem and Tommy who handled the weigh-in, oversaw the event. Five of the veteran volunteers – Kim, Patty, Lee, Sharon and Rose Ann – finished and cleaned up hours after the kids went home at noon. Brooke fished in a summer dress and hat but still won a fishing pole in the raffle — a new feature. Lucas and Jack won prizes for catching the most fish in their age categories. Harlee chose a Shark Week Bobblehead as her prize-perhaps consolation for only catching a Pufferfish which didn’t count in this tournament. Reed won the other Shakespeare fishing pole.

In the days when Kismet was, in large part, a “singles community,” August was the time for divorced and non-custodial parents to host their children. Now that families and weekly renters predominate, August is now the time for grandchildren as well. I see that fellow Kismetians have been looking for bike child seats, small trikes and other miscellaneous paraphernalia. As you read this, I will be well into a week of hosting friends with a 28-month-old daughter. I have no recent close-up experience with this, and have spent the last many hours “child-preparing” if not quite “proofing,” my small house.

Wow did we have a storm the last Saturday night! It was still thundering at dawn. Dog walker Cathy said it was a horrific time for dogs like a non-stop fireworks night. There is more to come they say. Still, Kismet’s weekday nightlife remains flourishing with trivia, bingo, bands and birthdays. Life is good!