Magnificent Gusting Waves & Unusual Prayers

It was a very strange day in Coney Island.  When I left, I had that feeling you get when you step off the plane in an entirely new climate and culture. I felt like an alien who had just left a different planet.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7y3ADlcDg9E

Firstly, the weather in Coney Island was drastically different that the rest of the city.  When I left I was wearing a sweatshirt, winter coat and wished I had a winter hat.  I was shocked to find that just a few blocks away everyone was still wearing tee shirts and enjoying a beautiful sunny afternoon!

A strange weather phenomenon descended upon the Island!  The winds gusted!  A sandstorm was brewing!  And a chilling breeze blew from off the ocean!  The summery spring heat from the morning gave way to powerful winds and magnificent waves.  We rarely see waves of this magnitude in Coney Island.  The wind whipped in a disorienting way.  The kind of wind that makes it impossible to think clearly.  And makes people act in strange ways.  The sun shown through the dense air, tinted brown by windblown sand.  It created an incredible lighting effect in the sunny seascape.

Kite surfers speckled the waves just off the shore.  With amazing dexterity the surfers jumped out of the ocean and into the sky.  They flew so high into the air I could hardly believe my eyes.  And then landed with grace surfing back and forth across the shoreline.

Standing at the shore, I turned to see a group of robed men fighting their way against the wind to make it down the beach.  I immediately assumed they must be shooting a music video, doing an ironic fashion shoot or performing some sort of Pagan ritual in the strange weather. (all three are common occurrences in Coney Island)  I learned that their attire was not ironic and that they were not Pagans.   They were Franciscan Friars, dressed in gray hooded robes and adorned with wooden beads and large crosses.  This is a sight you don’t often see in Coney Island!  The had come from afar and their mission was to convert the souls of Harlem.  The Friars questioned me about Coney Island and dug into the details of my memory for information about the Cathoic upbringing which I’d left behind years ago.  It is surprising, the details of your life that you know so intimately but then lay dormant in your mind for decades only to surface in the thick gusting wind. They said they would pray for Lola Star and Coney Island.  I wished them luck and waded through the air, back to the boardwalk!


Ahh… the season has only just begun and already strange storms are brewing in Coney Island!