I got one of those Facebook updates today that lets you know where you were at X years ago. 6 years ago (dayummm) I was on the Camino de Santiago (an historically religious pilgrimage across Spain) making my way from Burgos to Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, stopping along the way in San Sebastián, Biarritz (FR) and Asturias.
I walked a lot on my camino. Wore a backpack the size of my body and got a ton of blisters. But I also hitched rides on a bus or two, to accelerate the process. It was my personal pilgrimage, and my own way of saying hasta la proxima! to the country I had become smitten with over the previous two years, before moving back to the states (enter ominous music) for law school. Even with the occasional bus ride, the feeling of arriving to Santiago de Compostela alongside thousands of other pilgrims was totally overwhelming.
Fast forward six years, I’m returning to a place where I used to come every summer as a kid. Long Beach Island, New Jersey. Yup, the Jersey Shore. I love LBI because it’s a place I always go with my family. Memories and sentimental feelings wash over me when I cross the bridge and arrive to the island, in part because LBI has in many ways stayed the same over the years. Ron Jon Surf Shop greets me the moment that I cross the bridge. The famous pancake house always has a line of people waiting outside. The main attraction is still Bay Village, a cluster of shake shingle buildings filled with shops selling mostly candy and knick knacks, where we always go on Day 1 for bread bowls of New England clam chowder and fresh made fudge. There are some restaurants but not a ton, so we usually get take out seafood each night and eat outside, still wearing our casual beachwear. No shoes? Who cares. Salty hair tangled into one dreadlock? Lookin’ good.
one of those epic lobster dinners and sweet JERSEY CORN from Boulevard Clams Surf City, beaches
Having family time in a place we’ve always been together … i just couldn’t get enough of it. Happy travels, guys.