We've had some hot days in NYC recently. And I mean really hot. Plenty hot for this warm blooded, Georgia girl. But for the record I don't mind the heat. What I mind is not having a body of water nearby in which to cool down. That's always been my biggest complaint about living through summers here. (To be fair, I grew up with a swimming pool right outside the back door though so perhaps I'm a bit spoiled). But in the serious summer heat you have to make due with what you've got. And we have beaches here. Which BTW, I still find to be a bizarre and amazing fact. Oh yes, in addition to being the most magnificent city in the world, we also have beaches that you can get to in as little as an hour. No bigs.
On a particularly sweaty Tuesday (I think it was like 98 or some such nonsense) I decided it was so hot that the only logical option was to go to the beach. The only way to survive that type of heat was to find a body of water and get inside of it. So I hopped on my bike and rode south for about an hour to Coney Island. The ride was relatively easy and before I knew it I was staring at the ocean. The sand was scalding hot and the water was perfectly chilly. I brought lunch and magazines and it being a Tuesday the beach wasn't too crowded. I left with sand in my bathing suit, salt water on my skin and sexy beachy hair. It was pretty fabulous.
A few days later, I took the train out to Rockaway, but for this trip my Man came along which already upped the fun factor quite a bit. The subway seemed to take forever but Rockaway has a lil' place known as Rockaway Taco so forever is totally worth it. The beach is still a work in progress due to Hurricane Sandy but it was packed. After the all important taco stop (best fish taco I've had in quite awhile) we found a little patch of sand and settled in for a bit. Because of strong currents swimming was prohibited (GASP!) where we were which was a monumental heartbreak for this lady. I had been dreaming of swimming the entire ride out there, well that and the tacos. And to be that close to the water and not be able to go in is a serious form of cruelty. My Man astutely pointed out the exact moment when the lifeguards were down the beach and informed me that if I wanted to go in, now was the time. So I did. And the water was perfect and all was well. And as if things needed improving we found a place that made delicious frozen drinks on the way back to the train. I got my all time favorite frozen concoction, 1/2 pina colada and 1/2 strawberry daiquiri. Trust me on this one.
The water is my happy place and I believe in the soul-cleansing powers of the ocean. I've always dreamt of living by the beach but until then I suppose I'll have to make due by visiting a beach that's a bike/subway ride away with a cute boy. And maybe eating some tacos.