Miami, U S of A

Trip Start Feb 07, 2007
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Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of United States  , Florida
Friday, September 21, 2007

Welcome to the USA - land of plenty, a cornucopia of everything you could possibly desire.... Yes! We're well and truly in the Vice and it couldn't be much more of a contrast with the land of Llamas that we just left... After an easy flight we landed in Miami and our biggest challenge was communicating with the taxi driver at Miami Airport (it was never this hard in Peru!). It went something like this:
"1438 Washington, South Beach"
"Huh?"
"1438 Washington, South Beach"
"Washington? What number"
"1-4-3-8"
"What?"
"1-4-3-8"
"1-4-3 What?"
"8"
"What are you saying?"
"8"
"What"
"8"
"Are you saying eet?"
We've never had this much trouble communicating our destination address to a taxi driver - anywhere!!

Anyway, we cruised through mainland Miami, which looks something like an enormous Gold Coast, then crossed the bridge to Miami Beach and pulled up The Clay Hotel:
http://www.clayhotel.com/
The mafia don Al Capone apparently based his gambling ring at The Clay Hotel in the 1930's, so it's a pretty historic spot. Our next interaction with a local was in the supermarket across the street where an gorgeous wrinkly retiree stopped us and asked our opinion on what would be the best choice for a birthday cake for a lady. They don't call Miami 'God's waiting room' for no reason - it's retirement heaven here!! It's also Art Deco heaven here in South Beach, with loads of fine architectural examples lining the streets. After hitting the supermarket we returned to our room to completely gorge ourselves on such delicacies as Jif Peanut Butter, Smucker's Jelly, Hershey's Kisses, Hommus, Bagels, Bud Beer ... quite a disgusting combination actually. Apart from this we have been enjoying various other cultural thrills including being able to put toilet paper in the toilet and drinking tap water. We've also discovered sweat again as the temperatures and humidity here are gloriously high. This has meant a chance to swim, which is bloody great as our bodies have been suffocating in thermals for the past 10 weeks (plenty of flaky skin...). There's been a few tropical storms to cool us down, producing some of the most amazing plume shaped cloud formations we have ever seen. Apart from that Tim has been enjoying spending most of his time walking around the streets South Beach ogling the most ridiculously expensive and enormous cars like Lamborghini's, GT40's and big black Escalades. These people have got some serious cash! And the food... you've never seen such combinations of sugar, salt, fat and artificial flavours so ingeniously combined and in such huge amounts. There's a Dominos Pizza advert on TV for an Oreo biscuit dessert pizza! In an attempt to stick to our budget we've been hitting the supermarket,
but have had one meal out at the cutest diner.
As so many people say when they visit the states - it's all strangely familiar...

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