Ocean Gate & House
In 1998, I purchased a 1915 2-bedroom bungalow in Ocean Gate, NJ (OG). It was the perfect home for a then single 25yo with a good downpayment and hardly any income(!). It had a 1-bedroom cottage in the rear that was renting for $500 per month. Adorable house with great possibility; a waterview in the rear and a block to the beach. Lived/loved there for 11 years and you don't know what you have til' it's gone....
Now that we are living in "the city", I miss the small-town charm and convenience of OG. Everyone truly does know each other in a small town....neighbors were like family; postal workers, market employees and and the bartenders knew your name and served up what you needed before you knew what you needed. In the summer it was "Shangri-La-ic"...fireworks, flags, sea grass, horse & buggy rides, barbecues, ice cream from the market, quiet afternoons reading on the porch and beers in the driveway. In the winter it was cold and gray (in a good way), cozy and candles burning, and there was always the Anchor Inn on a snowday.
With time my family grew and being practical, we could not stay in the town that is the best kept secret along the whole coast of this state. I cannot even bring myself to drive through right now and its been a year....I may never be able to go by the Ocean Gate house ever again.
I take comfort that the current owners have done good things with the place(or so I've heard), things I could not attempt or afford. So in the meantime, I will continue to thrive in the suburbs; appreciate my square footage, pool, closets, dishwasher....all of the things I so desperately needed...or so I thought.