IT WAS PARADISE

Eastern Long Island, New York. A little village called Montauk. “The End”, according to locals; drive to the tip of the peninsula, walk a few steps and you’re in the Atlantic Ocean. Can’t get much more east than that!

We first drove to Montauk in 1984 to a no-frills family motel right on the beach overlooking the ocean. “Let’s go out for a weekend. If we don’t like it, we won’t go back.” Famous last words.

It was paradise.

Step outside the sliding back door of the motel room and your toes disappear into the sand. Big pool full of sunburned people having the time of their lives. Huge towels and colorful umbrellas along the shore, saltwater mist sprayed by the balmy breeze, a dog running with a Frisbee in its mouth.

There was a pizza place and an ice cream joint constantly busy. Seemed like all the kids had sun-streaked blonde hair and bronze tans, feet perpetually covered in sand, happy as clams.

Drive five minutes west on ‘the stretch’ between Montauk and Amagansett to a place known simply as ‘LUNCH’ for a mouth-watering lobster roll or a platter of fried puffers and chips. Best meal ever.

At night little fires dotted the beach, kindling glowed and crackled. Kids pierced marshmallows with long sticks and stuck them in the flames for a gooey sweet treat you won’t eat again till the next summer.

That weekend trip in ’84 turned into 37 years of vacations, each one longer that the one before it. It’s been a couple of years since we’ve been able to get out to “The End” but we’ll be back.

It was paradise.

A lobster roll at Lunch

NAR © 2021