Lists are my thing. Whether mental or on paper, I make them and thoroughly enjoy crossing things off upon completion. Moving to New York was no exception. Lists were made, and experiences have unfolded. With a smile on my face, I finally crossed off "the Hamptons" this past Saturday, but I know it won't be my final trip. My fingers are crossed for many, many more.
While most of my travel in the city happens via the train and subway systems, my friends and I actually got to drive a car. My friend Tim still has the car that he used when moving up here last month, so we took full advantage of it. The rain scared a few of our other friends away, but the four remaining adventurers charted out to the end of the island, which only took about two hours.
East Hampton is a perfect spot for a day trip away from the city. While most people plan a long weekend getaway months in advance (like way back in January), it's super easy to drive right up to the public entrance of the beach. It only costs $25 to park. And even though the day started out overcast, there were hardly any other guests. We felt like we hit the jackpot on every aspect and didn't have to put too much planning into things.
We quickly found a spot in the sand and went to the water. We were so mesmerized by the sight that our neighbors to the right had to warn us of the lurking seagulls who caught scents of our food. (These seagulls were massive and oddly well groomed; it was a comical sight chasing them away.)
After a few hours of frisbee throwing, sun lounging, and wave riding, we packed up and headed back to Main Street for a little dinner and window shopping. I felt like I was entering an upscale Mayberry, for everything was right there. It also was a much slower pace than the city, which I found refreshing. However, almost everyone there had close ties to the city life because they had either lived there years ago or were just vacationing for the summer similar to us. (Except we didn't have our own home, ha.)
The front porches and pitched roofs were a plenty, and hydrangeas were in full bloom. In a weird way, I felt like I was back in Mississippi. (I know, I know—feel free to giggle at this.) I hope one day I'll be able to take my family back so they can see for themselves.
All in all, we had a great time exploring a new space while getting to know each other outside our normal city routines. While parts of the Hamptons almost seem to be attempting utopia in a posh way, I was surprised to see the beauty in the surrounding nature, on the beach, and along the streets. One simply can't make accusations or build expectations by watching Gossip Girl or Revenge; he or she needs to see the space in the flesh.
I might not have the saltwater or the sand on my person any longer, but I'll forever cherish the memories made on this trip. We each saw what we wanted and left brainstorming plans for our next outing. Hopefully, we can go village by village and cover it all. If and when that happens, I'll be sure to post my thoughts on how each section stacks up against the others.