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Thursday, August 7, 2014

The "Mystery Solved" Story

It was ordinary day.  Carol and I are walking around "Castaway Cove" amusement pier in Ocean City, NJ watching our grandkids ride their favorite rides on the last evening of our family vacation.  
White plastic covers pictures on the paintings above the ride.
As I watched them ride the bumper cars I looked above me at the decorated paintings that rimmed the top of the ride and noticed that a few of the paintings were covered with white plastic sheeting.  Looked at Carol and said, "Wonder why they did that."  She replied, "Probably because the bathing suits that were on the girls barely covered them.  This is supposed to be a family oriented pier with all the children's rides, so I guess someone complained and they covered the worse ones."  Sounded good, but I wondered why they did it now instead of years ago when they were first installed.  We pointed it out to other family members and we all tried to give a reasonable answer to why they were covered.  Eventually I just had to know why the images were covered so I found two official looking guys wearing uniforms and asked them the question.  I got an answer that was totally unexpected.  
Another ride with pictures covered.
They told me they had 15 busloads of Jewish boys and girls from camp making a visit earlier in the day when the park wasn't open to the public.  The children were Hasidic Jews and they were being shielded from anything that could be considered obscene by their religion.  One man told me the boys all wore black pants that were tucked in their socks, black shoes and white shirts.  They had curly side locks on the side of their faces.  The girls wore long skirts with sleeves past their elbows.  They wore either a wig or a scarf to cover their head.  The 750 boys and girls were from Bronx, NY and had rented the pier for a few hours in the morning so the children could have fun and not be exposed to beach goers wearing bathing suits.  
This is one ride that I had taken a photo of on a previous
day.  The photo center-right was covered also, since the
young boy on the inter tube has his breasts exposed.
One ride that had parts of it facing the Boardwalk and the beach had to be partially shutdown so the children didn't see anything they shouldn't see.  Seems that the plastic covers were placed over the paintings to shield the children from seeing them.  Anyone who happened to be on the beach or see anyone walking the Boardwalk wouldn't see anything different on the paintings than they would have otherwise, but for the Jewish children, it was deemed necessary.  One man said that they had a report of a lost child and weren't sure what to say on the loud speaker.  Tough to say the child is dressed in a white shirt with black pants when a couple hundred others were dressed the same.  I assume that by tomorrow when the pier opens at 1:00 PM the white plastic will all be removed and no one will see anything different from the people on the beach.  We all want to protect our children from harm and this is the way that one group protects their children.  So be it!   It was another extraordinary day in the life of an ordinary guy.

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