Did you see the Miss America Pageant last night? I'm not a pageant follower, but I like to see this particular one. It takes me home to a time when the pageant was in Atlantic City, NJ. It kicked off with a big parade on the boardwalk, each girl rode on an individual float and they were just as beautiful then as they are now.
My young people will be visiting again this weekend and I think I will tell them about the Jersey shore as it was then, not as Snookie (did I spell that correctly?) and her group depict it today. As a teenager, my friends and I would ride our bicycles eight miles to the beach and wander in the dunes. We would make a fire and cook hot dogs, sharing with the gulls and other water fowl. We collected shells to be made later into crude jewelry.
Another great attraction in Atlantic City was the Steel Pier. It extended far out over the ocean and you could spend the whole day there enjoying three movie theaters, exhibits, amusements and good food. What I loved best was the water show at the end of the pier that featured the diving horse and the young woman who clung to its bareback when it dove from the tower into the huge tank of water. What no one ever knew then (it was not publicized) was that the young woman was blind. Get the film "Wild Hearts Can't be Broken" for the full story.
Well, the pier, as it was, is gone now and the pageant has moved to Las Vegas, but it will always remain a part of the real and genuine Jersey shore.
Till next time, Hatsy