Orchard Beach

9 Jun

Rightly or wrongly (ok, wrongly) it’s been described as the Riviera of the Bronx.  Which might give one the impression that Orchard Beach is a dainty morsel of uptown beachside glamour.

Au contraire.  In biscuit talk: Orchard Beach is a rock cake.  A tooth-snapping, currant-studded, chunky little number.

Don’t get me wrong — there’s definitely a place for tooth-snappers in the beach biscuit tin.  It’s all about boy scouting.

This is not the white sandy, salad rolly, ripped surfer chesty kind of beach you might expect if you’re an Australian unaccustomed to the 6 Line.

I know what you’re thinking. All the key ingredients are here, right?

  • Semi-naked bodies
  • Water (albeit verging on fetid)
  • A smattering of flirtatious teenagers (with extra attitude)
  • Police presence

But it’s all in Orchard Beach’s secret special sauce:

  • Rowdy hot dog vendors
  • Crowds (Like musical festival crowds.  The sweaty and pushy-shovey kind.)
  • American flags strewn over brick walls
  • Boom boxes screaming hip-hop salsa beats
  • Big-lunged ladies screaming at their brood
  • Fleshy, tattooed fists crushing Budweiser cans

Told you – nothing continental about it.  But it’s probably the realest slice of New York you’ll ever get.

Feast on it.


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