We worked the day before and that extended far into the night, up until 2 then 3 am. Both of us looking at each other, “are you tired yet?” “I can’t tell, I just can’t tell.” Illuminated screens like caffeine keeping eyes peeled and fingers tapping away.
Waking up was a battle. A blurry moment between snoozing the alarm, but maybe I dismissed it all together. Feeling the type of tired where your body aches and protests and draws your body back to your bed. It says “don’t, you can’t, I’m not ready yet.” And in that moment you might as well be a fish trying to go back to the sea as a net ascends you to the sky. So we missed the 10 o’clock train that would’ve gotten us to the beach by 12. “Is it even worth it to go to the beach anymore?” I asked. Hemming. Hawing. Next train departed in two hours, which meant that we would get there two hours past 12. By then the day is practically over, the sun already passed the middle of the sky and on it’s journey back down.
But what else is there to do on a Sunday in New York City when it’s 90 degrees? The heat suffocates you, strangles you, makes you unable to think and breathe. If all we had was only a few hours we still had to get away.
Two ticket stubs spat out of the machine and onto the train we went.
We both put headphones in and took our journals out. Full blast listening to our separate songs, entering into two different worlds. I often noticed how out of sync our head nodding or foot tapping was, as we stared at the same landscape.
A sign outside proclaimed this was the “Voted #1 beach in America” and my eyebrows skeptically raised. I flashed back to Northern California beaches with cliffs jetting abrasively against waves. The collision a miraculous explosion. Like water fireworks and mist going everywhere. I thought back to Oregon beaches. Where the forest spontaneously decides that it wants to be sand. Surfers our in full wet suits that cover their head and feet. I thought back to Hawaii beaches with black grains and crystalline water. With sea turtles snuggled up in makeshift magma tidepools. How could this beach, the one just two hours outside of Manhattan, be the number one beach in all of America?
But with city grime still on my skin and blisters from running to catch the subway, it really was the best beach in America. Sprawled out in front of us, a REAL frothy, rolling ocean. With soft sand and waves. And beach striped beach umbrellas and a little shack off of the side of the road that was dishing out fish and chips in checkered paper trays. An ocean before me that the longer I stared the more colors I saw. Yellows, creams, whites, deep indigos, greens, blacks. The more you look at an ocean the more you realize it’s not really blue at all, but a kaleidoscope of colors.
And that’s where we went. Dove directly in the water and were thrown around by 6 foot waves. We stayed in the water until sunset, in the water beside the best beach in America.
What I’m saying is you should do things that you think might not be worth it
Because those things are most definitely worth it