|Some of the fam at the shore. |
The boardwalk in back is now just concrete blocks.
It was always interesting when we all met at the shore. So many sand castles, boogie boards, wave surfing and attempts to swim in the freezing salt water pool at the pavilion. There were sunburns, wipeouts and sand in our shoes, hair and everywhere.
As a kid, I loved the beach. You couldn't get me out of the water, or the sun. As I got older, I lost interest. So much sunburn, salt and sand. I'm a redhead, which equates to lobster girl in summer. One summer, I sat upstairs in the pavilion in the rocking chairs that I loved, and read a book about the CIA for hours (mostly the same pages over and over...it was a bit dense). Later, I got into running and loved a jog on the boardwalk. Usually early in the morning for sunrise, when it's just you and the ocean. A walk on the beach during the winter is my favorite, probably because there's quiet and calm.
I hadn't been the shore since last summer and pulled out of the Atlantic City half marathon since I was sick. That race was the week before Hurricane Sandy. That boardwalk is now destroyed.
Despite the destruction and piles of rubble, we could visualize where things had been and I could remember where many things happened. Chats in the gazebo, swim races in the pool, the locker the family had all shared for decades, the badge kiosks.
The pavilion with the pool and lockers is missing sections of the wall. Our locker might be gone. There are piles of rubble and some homes were damaged, though most looked like they were mostly unscathed. Sand is everywhere, even a month later roads are closed and a huge operation to pump the lake was set up to prevent flooding.
A good friend of mine is from another part of the Jersey shore and wrote this incredible piece about her love for this place.