My favorite radio station, WMVY, broadcasts from the island of Martha’s Vineyard and I listen to it streaming live on my own little island—a cubicle in Boston. The music is folksy and cool (RayLaMontagne, Lyle Lovett, Martin Sexton), but it’s when they break for the news that I’m all ears. There are the usual encapsulated headline stories, but they’re followed by ferry schedules and tide reports—typical fare to islanders, but tidbits that transport me to summer in the Cape, if only for a moment. A booming steamship blast signals the noon hour and in moments you’ll know if the seas are choppy or if there’s a standby line for vehicles on the ferry. The sound of a buoy clanging is beautiful music.
In the winter, the ferry info calls to mind a quiet, tourist-free island; in the summer the beach report is painful if I’m at my desk but exhilarating if I’m heading to the beach, finally close enough to tune the station in on the car radio for real.