My mother has been going down the shore all her life.
My grandmother has been going down the shore all her life.
It's safe to say my family are beach people.
I love everything about going down the shore- except the actual beach. Here is why:
1. I have good Irish skin. I don't tan. With gobs of sunblock I become a darker shade of pale. Without- holy lobster skin, Batman. (JEGs, on the other hand, becomes a beautiful cocoa brown. And it's not like his family hails from a southern, warm climate nationality. He's Ukrainian... I don't get it.)
2. Sand. That shit gets everywhere! I find sand in nooks and crannies I didn't even know I had! Walking across the sand in the summer is like raking your feet over hot coals, and if you attempt to wear flip flops to cross, you are now spraying these scorching hot weapons onto your back.
3. I have the attention span of a 5-year-old hopped up on Pixi Stix. Laying around all day is really not my "thing". I need to be constently entertained or else I get rammy. When I go to the beach I make sure I have plenty of magazines and books to keep me entertained. It's the only way we are going to make it out alive.
4. Shells. Don't get me wrong, they are beautiful items from the sea that I love to collect. However, I don't love them when they are wedged 5 inches into my foot after stepping on the ocean floor.
5. Sharks. I know the chances of getting bitten by a shark are 1,000:1, but still.
6. New Yorkers. Do I really need to say more?
But, being a glass-is-half-full kinda girl, there are plenty of reasons why I do love going down the shore:
1. Time spent with family. Honestly, it doesn't get better then this. A week down the shore with my family is a week spent boogie boarding, bike riding, nightly trips to the ice cream shoppe, jigsaw puzzling, story telling, figuring out how many people can you cram around a table for a cut-throat game of Rummy (Note: Dad always wins), and very little television watching.
2. Food. There are some of the best restaurants at the shore. A personal favorite of mine is ScoJoes in Surf City, NJ. The breakfast there is amazing. Also we have a tradition in our family of eating what has been dubbed "little baby sandwiches" or "shore sandwiches". Basically it's Italian bread with mayo, pepper and Jersey tomatoes. Cheese is optional. They are served at noon, sharp.
3. Ambiance. Something about when I cross over that bridge onto the island just makes me go "ahhh" and I start to relax.
4. 06/20/01. LBI is where JEGs and I offically started dating. We try to go down at least once a year as an hommage to our anniversary. The beach between 3rd and 4th Streets will always hold a dear place in my heart.
5. Old Barney. The lighthouse on the island is Barnegat Light, or Old Barney as I fondly refer to him. It is probably one of my favorite places in the whole wide world. After climbing 217 steps to the top there is this amazing view along with a sense of calm that sweeps over me. I could stay up there all day.
My parents used to have a house in Surf City, but sold it during the housing boom of 2004 (and made out like bandits). Now they rent the bottom half of a duplex that my Great Aunt Ola has owned for over 50 years.
JEGs and I haven't been able to get down as often as we like, but we have two trips planned for the next month- as well as a trip to OBX at the beginning of August.
I've started my magazing collection already. Just in case ;)