It’s been said that when the city planners sat down to design Washington D.C., their intention was to build a city that would intimidate and humble foreign heads of state. Well, I’m here to tell you that it ain’t got nothin’ on the Hamptons.
My friend Mike recently learned just how complicated life in the Hamptons can be for a first-time visitor from the nation’s capitol.
I instructed him, “Mike—When you get to LaGuardia Airport, you will be in the borough of Queens, which is part of New York City. Of course, you will actually be in Western Long Island. Anyhow—head east. After a few twists and turns you are going to be on the LIE. That’s short for the Long Island Expressway.”
I continued, “I live on the East End. It’s in Suffolk County. You will pass the county seat, which is Riverhead,. Don’t be worried if you can’t find any reference to the East End on the map because that’s just what we call it. It’s really ‘Eastern Long Island.’”
I slowed down just a bit so he could take notes. “If you get lost, just remember you are going to the Hamptons. Now don’t be confused when people reference the Hamptons, because it actually comprises many small towns, villages and hamlets. Also, you’ll need to be aware that there is an East, West-, North-, South- and Bridge- Hampton. There’s also a Hampton Bays. But really, all the East End is pretty much part of the Hamptons.”
He made a telephone sigh as I finished my instructions. “If you get lost and have to ask for directions to my house, they may first ask if you’re going to the North Fork or the South Fork. I live on the South Fork.
“Lastly—when you’re going to my house, make sure you pay attention when you hit the roundabouts. Many people have never really driven on a roundabout and it can get quite tricky getting on and off the “merry-go-round.”
Several hours past the scheduled arrival time, Mike called me and said he was definitely lost, as he had just passed a sign on the LIE that indicated he was in Dan’s Country.
When I finally caught up with him on the shoulder of the LIE, he seemed dazed and confused.
Later that night, I tried to explain to him about Dan’s Papers and Dan’s Country.
“Well, it isn’t a newspaper because it’s only published weekly, but it has some of the elements of a newspaper, although it’s really a magazine, but then again it’s so much more than a magazine. And it’s bigger than a standard magazine.
I don’t know why it’s called Dan’s Papers instead of Dan’s Magazine. Actually, it’s even referred to as “Dan’s Hamptons.”
“I am glad I am going back home in a couple days. Life is too complicated in the Hamptons.”