Months ago, I ordered a box of 20 disposable N-95 masks. By the time they arrived, not long ago, many local first responders were short on Personal Protective Equipment and could use the masks more than I did.
After reading L.I. Herald reporter Andrew Garcia’s article on the Bellmore-Merrick EMS and how it needed PPE, I put on my makeshift face mask, grabbed the unopened box of N-95s, and drove to the not-for-profit’s nearby Bellmore HQ.
While dropping off the masks outside the EMS entrance door, I asked EMT ALEX DOOLEY what protective equipment donations the first responders particularly needed, other than masks, and she immediately said “gowns.”
Since dusk wasn’t far off when I left, I decided to capture Earth Day photos at a nearby South Shore park.
Normally I’d head west to Norman J. Levy Park & Preserve in Merrick, but it was closed because its sprawling trails and secluded areas weren’t social-distancing-friendly and Long Island was a major hot spot for the Covid-19 pandemic. So I instead headed east to Mill Pond Park in Wantagh.
The park borders Merrick Road, where I parked, joining two or three other cars already there, and adjusted my face mask after getting out of the car.
• [digitally colored] Panorama of Mill Pond Park at dusk:
My iPhone 11 Pro was the best and only camera I had with me. Its 2X optical zoom helped make it possible to capture photos I otherwise couldn’t have while Governor Cuomo’s executive order “New York State on PAUSE” is in effect, currently from March 22 to May 15, 2020.
New York State on PAUSE “NY State remains on PAUSE through May 15. All non-essential workers are directed to work from home, and everyone is required to wear a face covering and maintain a 6-foot distance from others in public”
FEATURE PHOTO at top of post: Wantagh, New York, U.S. April 22, 2020. Two fishermen wearing waders fish at Mill Pond Park on Earth Day as dusk approaches.
Whether their cars wore vivid coats of paint or muted ones, the owners I met at the Bellmore Friday Night Car Show last week were colorful and happy to talk, especially about the treasures they drove there.
Standing next to his sleek black Chevy SS, “Mr. Blowtorch” was handing out small free stickers – each with a beautifully illustrated car scene and “Friday Night • Car Show • Bellmore” on it.
I took two or three stickers as he shared anecdotes, and showed photos on his cell phone, about his former career as a theatrical stage metal worker (NYC’s Local One – IATSE).
So “Mr. Blowtorch” was the nickname he got at work, which spanned decades and continents, and included making the large flat metal world map, showing several rotated views of Earth, for the set of CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite!
See the USA in Your 1957 Chevrolet
A big fan of the Chevy Tri-Years, 1955-57 (and shiny red things), I headed straight to a red 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air as soon as I spotted it.
It turned out I arrived just in time to capture a shot of that, since – though the rockets weren’t leaving the car – the car was about to move to an apparently more desirable spot that had just opened up across the lane.
FRANKIE D’AMORE, of Levittown, had “BAC2D80S” license plates on his white with red interior 1984 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz convertible. Small green, white and red “Italia” boxing gloves dangling from the rear view mirror gave an extra personal touch.
It was well past sunset when I left shortly before 9 PM that late summer night.
Chamber of Commerce of the Bellmores members, wearing yellow reflective safety vests, were collecting entrance fees from drivers of the classic, antique and customized cars, who had over an hour of cruise night to enjoy.
For me, like the rest of the hundreds of visitors who walked in, Bellmore Friday Night Car Show was free.