Sure, the drive to the Hamptons in eastern Long Island, 90 miles east of Brooklyn, passes through typical countryside scenery: horse ranches, farmers’ fields, an Indian reserve – Shinnecock, and the like. But here are a few sights that stood out for me on my recent visit.
- Celebrity estates, e.g. Madonna, Matt Lauer, protected by formidable knife-edge-trimmed hedges 30 feet high.
- Byways with quaint names like Wood Thrush Road, Bluff Point Road and Jobs Lane. (The latter probably named after one of the first Southampton settlers, Job Sayre. Thank you, Wikipedia!)
- Deer nibbling at bushes in front yards, two feet from the door.
- A couple leaving a restaurant terrace, putting their helmets on, climbing onto their motorcycle, and strapping their tiny Yorkie into its little carrier before taking off with a roar and a plume of exhaust. (I hope the Yorkie was wearing doggie earplugs, let alone a doggie helmet.)
- Ultra-skinny tanned women – probably living on arugula and chicken bones and $3 bottles* of alleged spring water.
- Farm stands selling new potatoes, raspberries etc. No biggie, except that many such stands are unattended. You are expected to drop money into a box at the posted suggested price! Would this honour system work here? Hmm…
- Dogs, dogs, and more dogs. Everyone and his dog, has dogs. I don’t know if this is a status symbol (of course they are all purebred), or if the locals are just very lonely. 😉
- Prices in boutiques requiring the would-be buyer to have an income equivalent to the GDP of a small country.
I might think of more. Or you might have more, if you’ve been there. If so, please feel free to add to my list!
*I admit I bear a grudge toward those $3 bottles… though it is not their fault. I bought one at La Guardia when I was leaving, forgetting that I hadn’t yet gone through security! Result: most of bottle left behind.