Wednesday, June 18, 2014

DON'T EVEN THINK IT


I'm so telling you. Don't go. Well... unless you absolutely have to, but even then, try NOT to go. Unfortunately, I myself HAD to go. So sure enough... I went. It's crazy ass hectic. It's oppressively hot. It's crowded as hell. It's the last place on earth I ever want to be. So where is this place of which I'm speaking??

Uh... it's Miami. Oops. I'm sorry. No. It's not Miami. It's SUPPOSED to be Miami, except it totally isn't. Instead... it's Latin American. Seriously. That's Miami now.

Within the 12 years since I've left for good... for much the same reasons I've just listed above... I can't beLIEVE what changes have occurred in the city of my birth and many many years of my youth and adulthood. Now don't get me wrong. I have absolutely nothing against Latin America. It's perfectly fine for those wishing to visit Brazil, Columbia, Argentina, Venezuela, Ecuador, etc. etc. You'll see some of the most beautiful, vibrant countries in the world there.

BUT IF YOU WANT TO VISIT MIAMI... you basically can't. You'll have to instead, visit the pretend Miami since... as I've already said... it is now totally: Latin America. It's NOTHING like the real Miami in which I grew up. The architecture is Latin. The food is Latin. The shops are Latin. For SURE the language is comPLETEly Latin. In fact, several years ago, even TIME magazine called Miami the capital of Latin America. And trust me... IT IS. Man... it just blew my mind.

And.. get this. To drive home the point even further for me, I had to go to Miami at the height of the soccer World Cup deal no less! You have no idea what's doing down there. I was in the Brickell Village area on Saturday night and I'm telling you... it felt exactly like entire Latin America met Times Square on New Year's Eve! It was completely unbelievable.

I even had to whip out my camera over and over again to simply take in the entire scene. Processing all the restaurants, all the outdoor bars, all the zillions HUGE high rises that were under construction, all the cars, all the PEOPLE, all the noises, all the EVERYTHING was an onslaught to one's senses. Granted, an energetic, happy onslaught, but a LATIN AMERICAN onslaught nevertheless. What happened to the Coral Gables, South Miami and/or Miami Beach in which I grew up, I can't begin to even tell you. Other than it decided to basically not be a part of the United States anymore. It decided to be Latino.

By the way... speaking of how many people are living there now, you should SEE the size of the airport nowadays. I had to walk MILES before I got to baggage claim. I mean it... getting through that airport took actual miles to maneuver by foot. I WAS EXHAUSTED by the time I got from the plane and walked away with my one stupid little checked bag. Granted every Latin American who helped direct me, spoke English but I swear. I thought the walk to the claim rounders would never end.


Anyway... I went to Miami because I had to and in spite of it being a difficult reason, I must say: I had a fantastic time. I totally loved everything I ate. I totally loved seeing everyone I had to. Most of all, I totally loved being in a pool once again. Oh yeah. Heads' up: if you DO have to go to Miami... sorry, I mean Latin America... you SO have to be sure you hop into the pool for a couple of hours every day just to bring down your body temp. No wonder I was in my pool everyday when I lived there. IT'S CRAZY ASS HOT outside.

Just looking around at all the things, whether it be traffic, people, buildings, signs, whatever... is like major visual excess. On the other hand...

I better learn to live with it because in six weeks... guess what. I have to GO BACK THERE YET AGAIN. Oh man. I can't believe it. Granted, the next time will be for a happy reason indeed, but still. The entire experience gives a whole new meaning to sensory overload. Including your sense of taste for I do have admit... the food was absolutely superb. Exceptionally pricey, yes, but totally worth it.  

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