Montauk, August 2014. When I was a little kid growing up next to the Great South Bay on the South Shore of Long Island, Montauk Point represented the end of the world as I knew it, right at the very end of the Montauk Highway. Get to the lighthouse and your next stop, beyond the horizon, was Block Island, and then some other points on a map in a place called New England that I knew nothing about.
Montauk was different. There was a huge harbor filled with ocean-going trawlers, instead of the little clamming skiffs we saw on the bay everyday, and you could watch them come and go while cracking lobster claws at a waterside table at Gossman’s Dock. It always seemed to be foggy or windy in Montauk. And there were hills and forests, something you didn’t see a whole lot of among the modest ramblers in the growing suburban sprawl to the west in the 1960s.
Now, whenever I get back to Long Island to visit my brother, who still races sailboats on the bay, I try to make it out to the end of the highway at Montauk, even though it has grown and changed a lot. This year, the whole family went, and it held their attention, just like it has held mine all these years. (Photos made with a Holga, scratches and vignettes included, on Kodak Porta 400 color film. And an editing note: a few weeks ago I cross-posted Instagrams similar to these. I’ve taken those down now.)