Rockaway Beach, New York is a home unlike any other. Compared to any tourist that comes to visit, there are 15 signs a Rockaway Beach native knows better than anyone.
1. You Have Had the Same Group of Friends Since You Were Six
Chances are you all went the same grammar school. If you’re lucky enough, you went to the same high school with them as well. You’ve spent every day together for as long as you can remember.
2. You Own a Beach Cruiser
This has been your go-to mode of transportation your whole life. You know how to carry everything you need for the beach or the night out while riding a bike.
3. You Spent Your Teenage Years Lifeguarding
It’s likely you started at pools then made your way to the beaches. At the beaches, you either rocked the red for the feds or the orange city bathing suits.
Growing up in a mainly Irish Catholic town, you probably spent Sundays going to Church, and looked forward to Rockaway’s own holiday, Rockaway St. Patrick’s Day. When you were younger you couldn’t wait to get older to spend this holiday at the tent.
5. Locals Only
You get really defensive about your town and almost get annoyed when DFDs set up their stuff on your beach that ruins the cleanliness of the beaches.
Since you were little, you probably went to either 129th or 116th to get a delicious NY bagel. When you went away to college you probably missed them because nothing substituted for whatever your school called bagels.
You most likely owned several pairs and you did not take them off all year round.
8. Your Bed Is Filled with Sand
Every day and late night on the beach was fun, but you tracked a lot of sand into your bed. You can change and wash your sheets as many times as you’d like, but you can never get rid of every last grain of sand.
9. Gossip Travels Fast
Your parents, mostly mothers, like to gossip with their friends about everything that’s going awry in your life. Occasionally they brag about how well you’re doing but it’s most likely the last bad thing you did, and suddenly, the whole town knows about it.
10. Everything You Will Ever Need Is within Walking or Biking Distance
Given this, you’ve probably biked everywhere since you were little. It started off to the bagel store and then became the bars when you got older.
11. 129th and 116th
These numbers should call some memories to your mind. You have spent a decent amount of time at these blocks. 129th is known for the bagel store, the deli, the bike store, Jameson’s and much more. 116th has everything you can possibly need including the surf shop.
12. Leaving the Peninsula
Sometimes, Rockaway Beach doesn’t have all that you need even though you wish it did. As you get older and enter high school, you will probably leave the peninsula to go to school. Things like Target and maybe even your workplace will cause you to leave as well. Sometimes, you see it as a hassle because “you’re on island time.”
13. You Can Easily Tell When Someone Is Not from around Here
There’s the fedoras, the bed sheets, the poorly packed coolers, the people who don’t know how to swim, and the umbrellas flying away. Just a few tricks to easily spot a DFD.
14. You Can Put Up a Good Argument About Rockaway Beach
Some may argue that living in a beach town is not ideal all year-round, however you understand that these people are completely wrong and that summers in Rockaway Beach are the best part of living here. They may try to claim that winters are boring but you have Christmas in Rockaway Beach and Rockaway St. Patrick’s Day to look forward to.
15. You Never Want to Leave
Your family has most likely lived here for generations, and you imagine what it’s going to be like raising your own family in Rockaway Beach.