june 24: landed in miami. the airport sucks. super hard to figure out where to go, where you are when you come out, where to go when you leave. stupid place. dad found me though and we made it to south beach pretty quickly. our hotel was pretty mediocre but we were near several restaurant areas so it was helpful when we went looking for dinner.
we went walking to the lincoln road pedestrian area. man, did i forget what a trip miami was. boobs and butts and abs and crazy attire everywhere. most of the clothes i saw couldnt be worn anywhere else in the world than in miami, unless you wanted to get arrested or committed to a mental institution. such a crazy place. and i SO do not fit in. but i could care less. we found an italian place on the strip (raphaels) with a decent menu and good prices and sit down to people watch.
after dinner, we walked back and turned in for the night. because my body clock was wacked out, i woke up at like 6a. we went out looking for food at 8a, and shocker, miami is asleep at this hour. finally at 8:30a, we found a cafe open. crappy place, but it was on the ocean drive strip of south beach, so after breakfast we went out on the beach to get a look around. not too hot and sunny at this hour and all the white sand and palm trees were pretty inviting.
then we decided to get on the road back to melbourne. while i was waiting to check out, the woman in front of me was asking for directions to a nearby mall explaining how she was french and the malls here are different then france. it was so funny to hear a french accent speaking english. i felt like i was back in rennes! i wanted to say hi and ask where she was from, but that seemed too weird. so, we got in the car, drove through esplanada way (cute old spanish area of miami beach), and headed out to I-95.
(miami, your shops are so...naughty; ocean dr in miami)
june 26: moms friend, michelle, was commissioned to make us a gourmet dinner as a social meal for 10 people. she made french appetizers (brie and black currant jam in a puff pastry and warm baguette with herb butter), italian main dishes (eggplant parmesan and chicken marsala), and italian dessert (cannoli cake). the cannoli cake was DElicious: a layer of sponge cake, cannoli filling with chocolate chips, another layer of sponge cake, topped with buttercream frosting and mini cannolis. yum!
after dinner, it was suggested by the group to visit lous blues, a freaky bar down the road from my moms house. this place is a perfect microcosm of florida: senior citizens, leather-skinned ladies/cougars, social outcasts, bikers, cowboys, a few token minorities, college kids/bridal parties, and crackers. basically: liquor + awkward white people = best free entertainment ever. example image: a 70+ year old white guy with dorky sandals, denim capri pants, a beachy plaid short-sleeved shirt, and beaded/shell necklace...jumping up and down and bobbing on the dance floor. i was surprised an artificial knee wasnt shredded. hilarious. hilarious. its a must-see spot. good time, guaranteed.
(the bra chandelier at lous blues; a middle-aged man making a fool of himself)
june 27: lunch at thai zushi asia. yum. great selection of rolls. good prices. HUGE rolls. i ordered the dancing mango roll: shrimp tempura, cream cheese, avocado, lemon slice with mango pieces on top. the fifth avenue roll and almond tree roll were also good. and since it was a thai place too, they had thai iced tea. perfect!