We did not go to Ocean City this year. We didn't want to risk it - we knew people would not be diligent about masking and social distancing.
I miss it.
My first memory is of turning down the long driveway to the oceanfront cottage we rented on 48th Steet. I think I was four or thereabouts. My parents rented the bottom floor of a larger house; the owners lived upstairs. At this point, Ocean City consisted of a small downtown, the Boardwalk in all its glory, and sand dunes dotted with cottages and the occasional motel.
But even now, with the motels and hotels and high-rise condos, the restaurants and souvenir shops and bars, the traffic and crowds, Ocean City is still my favorite place. Our little house on the bay side, which we share with my sister and brother, is where I can let go and really relax. Maybe we don't spend all day on the beach. That's okay. As long as I spend a little time gazing at the waves, I'm good. As long as I can sit on the porch and watch the sun set, life is fine. As long as I can get a sundae at Dumser's Dairyland and a tub of Fisher's caramel corn, all is right with the world.
So I content myself with pictures from years past, and promise myself that we'll get back to the sand and salt water. Maybe next summer; maybe next fall, maybe even later than that. But we will.