Jade blue water melding into royal blue and then into that favorite crayola color of mine, cornflower blue. Such is the water of the Atlantic Ocean in South Beach Miami. Clear water, I might add, much warmer and so much clearer than the Atlantic water I am used to seeing at the New Jersey Shore. Water so clear you can see the bottom and waves so gentle that you don't have to worry about your younger children being carried off with the undertow. This time I am visiting Miami without younger children or older children; therefore, visiting the beach is much more relaxing and different. I can close my eyes in the surf and float for hours without worrying if one of my children is drifting further down the coast or wandering off with a stranger. I could float for hours but actually, I can't. Yesterday, I went to the beach with my husband and the waves actually made me feel sea sick... there's a new development! Body surfing has never made me feel seasick, so why now? Is that a part of becoming middle aged? If so, that's yet another strike against aging. I REFUSE TO GET OLD! After entering the water, a couple of fish over a foot long swam right past me! And, when my husband joined me, a smaller fish skipped passed us and bounced five times like a skipping stone across the waves before diving back down below the waves. Astounding.
I have a special fondness for Miami that dates back to 1990 when my husband and I were driving back from visiting the Keys. While the friends we were traveling with continued home, we stopped in Miami for two nights and enjoyed ourselves. We were young. I had corn rows in my hair and were both rather unkempt after traveling for so long. The first hotel actually turned us down, so I can remember us trying desperately to make ourselves more presentable in the car by changing our clothes and me wearing my husband's hat over my corn rows to hide them. In retrospect, I don't really see how that was a better choice but nonetheless, it worked. While in Miami, we visited a reggae bar and restaurant and danced the night away. My husband thinks he can't dance but he actually does a good job and never says no. Never saying no to a woman who wants to dance scores big points.
Today, Jeff and I sat and reminisced and ate and drank. And, after one, two, three or more beers, we started writing collaborative stories where one person writes a few sentences and the next person only gets to see the last three words and continue from that point. It was quite fun and after completion, we laughed pretty hard. We shared our stories with our waiter who slowly warmed up to us with each beer that we drank. My husband is asleep now on the bed while I write. After leaving the restaurant hours later, we ambled down to the gelato store and sampled it. My favorite was the hazlenut gelato. I don't know if it was the beer or the gelato, but either way, the gelato was smooth and rich and tasty. Afterward, we felt the primal woo which calls to all Mac users, emanating from the Mac store. We carefully made our way to the store not fully aware of the temptations which lied within. My husband encouraged me to go ahead and charge a new Mac Ibook. I WAS SO TEMPTED! We left the store. We walked a half block. We returned to the store. We discussed the pros and cons of using my credit card. Luckily for me, or unluckily, the winds of sobriety were starting to blow my direction. I stood up to the temptation and took it on face to face. I said, "No!"
Damn it. I said, "No!" What the hell was I thinking?
We quickly made our way out of the Spanish tourist village of South Beach and tried to return to our hotel but another primal urge was calling to my husband... that of getting a tattoo at what is probably one of the most famous tattoo parlors in he U.S. right now, Miami Ink. So, we heeded the call and went straight instead of veering left. After perusing book after book of sample tattoo art, Jeff and I both decided that the tattoo he wanted did not exist in one of their books and he would have to email them a sample if he wanted to get one while here. Another expenditure avoided. We finally made our way back to the hotel and here I am writing and my husband is napping. The woos and wonders of a little bit of leisure and beer. Beware, fair generation X traveler.