[Come summer heat, much of my blogging momentum melts away. Hence an experiment until Labor Day: fifty minimalist posts about whatever.]
I met my second husband on the right-hand side of East Hampton Main Beach, facing the ocean, early in July 1963. This was before summer rentals soared to $20,000 a month and up. A girlfriend and I found a one-bedroom cottage that cost $1200 for the whole season.
The left-hand side was attached to the Maidstone Club, allegedly only for white Christians. You could buy a drink at the Maidstone bar, and even walk across the Maidstone part of the beach, but no one I knew had ever put down a towel or blanket on it. Who would you talk to? All the marriageable Jews were on the other side.
I was there in my pink modified bikini, on the right-hand side, because I was nearly 32 and my Hungarian therapist kept saying, “I don’t mean to insult you, honeybunch, but you’re not getting any younger.” He meant I’d been divorced long enough and if I wanted a baby, I’d best get off my ass and start working on it. The first husband had been a white Christian who would have fitted right in on the left-hand side. I thought I’d do things differently this time.
Future second husband was there, on the right-hand side, to get out of the city. (He said.) He stayed at a bed and breakfast. The sun went down, the right-hand side was emptying, but I sat on, conveniently alone. (My house-mate was in New York with a cold.) Future second husband, on a towel not too far away and still a stranger, needed a match.
Yes I did have a match. He moved his towel closer. We smoked and chatted together. Then came a drink at the nearby Maidstone bar. He asked what brought me to East Hampton.
I said I was looking for a father for my unborn children.
He said that sounded like a good idea and how would it be if we saw each other till I found him.
Is the point of this story that it always pays to tell the truth? Or that the part of themselves men think with isn’t always the head?