Rockaway, N.Y.

[Words by Jamie Brisick / Photography by Vava Ribeiro / Model Charlotte Carey / Styling by Amanda Merten]

For a crew of inveterate construction workers, it’s restoring 600,000 cubic yards of sand along the shoreline. For a group of chinos and Vans-clad Williamsburgians, it’s the best taco in all the five boroughs. For a Dominican kid named Casper, it’s waking to an alarm clock at dawn, checking the surf from his bedroom window, making coffee, choking down a banana, waxing board, climbing into 6mm full suit, booties, hood, gloves, and trotting across the snow to a silvery sea. For Jimmy the Weasel from Jersey, it’s a handoff in the alley behind Ciro’s Pizza with Joe the Builder from Philly. For a tribe of Lenape Indians in the 1400s, it’s teeming with deer and brimming with fish. For a fifteen-foot wave on October 30, 2012, it’s a boardwalk sandwich drizzled in first, second, and even third-floor windows, followed by seven houses and at least a dozen telephone poles. For a band of punk rockers in 1977, it’s not hard, not far to reach. For British/Indonesian Charlotte Carey in the summer of 2015, it’s a post-apocalyptic dance floor, it’s a shedding of various skins, it’s a kind of erasure.