Saturday, July 30, 2011

Going with the Flow Revived - Florida Day Three

I awoke the morning of our third day in Florida, our only full day in Miami to discover it was raining. Not a little rain that would go away in twenty minutes, but the kind of rain that hangs around all day and messes with your plans. I was determined to live in the moment and enjoy each moment regardless of my struggle the day before. Okay, I still really wanted to go to the beach, but I was willing to just see where the day took us.
First things first, find a place for breakfast. A Google search directed us to The Front Porch (see review on my review blog.) in Miami Beach.

We made the short drive to Miami Beach and found a parking place. In the process, we saw a bunch of stage lights, large cameras, cabling, and a few 1950/60s cars (I think. I'm not good at placing cars in the right decade.) staged on a couple of closed off streets with police officers directing traffic around them. There was no indication what was being shot, but my curiousity was piqued. So much so, I would've gone back and checked it out, but we had parked quite a distance from the restaurant and it was starting to rain harder. I decided it could wait until after breakfast. After all, don't video shoots take hours and sometimes even days?

Waiting on Breakfast - Front Porch Cafe
We arrived at the restaurant grateful the outdoor seating at The Front Porch was covered. We were seated and quickly realized we could hear every word the couple at the next table said which meant they could hear us, too. The tables were close enough together, we could've been dining together to the passerby!

We struck up a conversation. After some advice on places to eat including their advice that we "must" go to David's Cafe (review available at Reviews with TLC), talk about the Miami Beach/South Beach area, and family, conversation turned as it inevitably does to careers. We learned more than we should have, I do believe. Turns out he (no names just in case) is a retired Marine sniper (she told us when he stepped away to take a phone call) who now does "things" mostly in Iraq and Afghanistan for the US goverment through his work with a private contractor. She is a teacher. They've been married a really long time and all their children are grown. They seemed really interesting. I would've liked to have spent more time talking with them, but I think I put my foot in my mouth by asking him about his work. He responded  something to the effect of "I do things writers like to write about." to which I replied something to the effect of "But wish didn't have a need to really happen." He got really quiet after that. Oops! My stupid mouth strikes again.

Shortly after our breakfast companions left the restaurant, we finished eating and left ourselves. We'd discovered during breakfast that the video shoot was for a music video. Okay, so it wasn't some movie or television show, but I was still interested in seeing the process. Don't ask why. I just like seeing things I've never seen before. By the time we walked back over to the shoot area, they were wrapping things up. I think I overheard someone say the incessent rain had halted production for the day. (Or perhaps I pieced this together from a smattering of different conversations I was eavesdropping on.) Darn! I didn't get to see any of that after all. And, here I was thinking since it was too rainy to go to the beach, this would make a nice alternative activity for a little while. See, I really was trying to go with the flow.

At this point we opted for a short walk around town with hopes the rain would let up, and we could go take a walk on the beach. I think deep down I'd known even before we left the hotel, this was unlikely to happen because I hadn't bothered to bring my swimsuit. Of course, buying a swimsuit on the spot would've really have been a costly venture... Apparently, swimsuits are much cheaper in states where it's hot year round than in states where it rains most of the year. Go figure!
Cool Tree in Miami Beach

Anyway, after purchasing an umbrella, we began our walk heading in the general direction of David's Cafe. While we were wandering through a little neighborhood - you know houses and apartment buildings instead of hotels and touristy stores - I  pointed out an interesting looking tree for my husband to take pictures of. I couldn't believe he missed it!

Cuban Coffee -
David's Cafe


We made it to David's Cafe. It was easy to find. The large men at the entrances surprised us. I giggled. I couldn't help myself. Bouncers at a coffee shop. Were they trying to set some kind of atsmosphere? I didn't get it if they were. We ordered Cuban coffee. Our breakfast companions had also suggested we try the pastry there, but we were both too stuffed from breakfast, so Cuban coffee it was. This was our first experience with Cuban coffee. I loved it. My husband found it too sweet. The waiter replaced his with an unsweetened version but told us that Cuban coffee is traditionally served sweetened. Honestly, I wanted a second cup right then and there, but as it was my second cup of coffee for the day opted to abstain. Apparently, quite a few celebrities have dined at David's Cafe as they have walls of photos of celebrities. I had to take a look. If you're wondering, yes, I did recognize a few faces.
 
Photo Wall -
David's Care
As we walked back to the car, we started to feel annoyed with all the restaurants trying to get us to eat. Every place we passed someone tried to thrust a menu into our hands. Enough already! After some stops for pictures, we made it back to the car and were happy to find that we didn't have a ticket as our meter had run out a few minutes before we got back.

I guess I wasn't meant to visit the beaches at Miami Beach because every time we tried to go there, another downpour hit! Oh, well next time.

Walking on beach in Key Biscayne
Sea Turtle Nest -
Bill Baggs State Park
We left Miami Beach and headed over to Key Biscayne to see the Cape Florida Lighthouse. The rain let up, so I was finally able to walk on the beach for a bit!! There was a sea turtle's nest taped off. Of course to the naked eye it just looks like sand, which is why they tape it off. Wouldn't it be cool to see baby sea turtles hatch?

Cape Florida Lighthouse
 My husband took lots of pictures of the lighthouse. We spent some time walking around the Bill Baggs State Park staying close to the lighthouse. We even had a little fun shooting "trick" photos of the lighthouse and me.

Gotta love camera trickery!

After dinner, we headed back to the hotel to shoot some more potential photos for the cover of my collection of poetry. It's amazing how many shots it takes to get just the right one, but that's coming in another post.

All in all, as I let myself not get caught up in what I was missing and just enjoyed what I was doing, I found it much easier to just have fun. My fear that I might not get to do what I wanted to do during our entire trip melted away. I was in Florida! Time to stop whining and just enjoy!

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