by Kailey Aiken
The beach was certainly not the most pleasant place to be this week. Days of unrelenting rain, clouds, and wind made the time we lifeguards spent in the chair far less than ideal. On cold and rainy days like these, you better remember to pack your parka, raincoat, and extra sweatpants — or at least hope that your partner did. We experienced such heavy fog on Saturday and Sunday that it restricted visibility of the water from the chair so much that we had to switch to watching the water on the shoreline for about an hour on both mornings. With this weather, not many people made it down to the beach so it was a fairly uneventful week for cases (rescues), which is one thing we’re not complaining about, but hopefully within the next few days, it will start to feel like summer again.
Last week, we were informed that lifeguards are once again able to work their RDOs (Regular Day Off) to earn overtime pay. This is a perfect way to make some extra money, and it helps out your coworkers since it gives the beach a little extra manpower. Besides, if you have nothing to do on your RDO, you’d probably be going to the beach anyway.
On Sunday morning, Iris Rodriguez, the First Deputy Commissioner of the Parks Department, came to Rockaway to Beach 106th to bring pastries and coffee to lifeguards before work. She even ended up going down the boardwalk to each shack to meet lifeguards and bring any leftovers to those who couldn’t make it to 106 before work. There were even complimentary Parks Department hats and T-shirts. It was a nice treat and a great way to start the day!
Speaking of the Commissioner, she will also be hosting the Shack Olympics for us this year on Tuesday, July 25, so mark your calendars. The Shack Olympics will consist of seven events: 500-meter swim, 500-meter paddle, run-swim-run relay, 2-man rescue, reel rescue, beach flags, and tug of war. Each shack will choose a few of their best guards to compete for each event, and the date is only about a month away, so everybody better start training soon.
As for softball on Monday, the chance of rain threatened to call it off, but the rain ended up holding out. Downtown unfortunately beat 117 with a score of 11-8, and Midtown won again, crushing Uptown with a score of 12-4.
Now that public schools are finished and the Fourth of July is right around the corner, things on the beach will really start to pick up and the summer season will be in full swing. Let’s hope this week brings some beautiful summer days!