Sue Germain, Miami, Fl, “The South Meets Cuba”
It is July 10, 1993 a Sunday night in Miami. I had recently joined a telephone dating service where I placed a long term relationship ad which said I wanted the all American dream, marriage, little house with a white picket fence, kids and a dog. The ad also said if the person listening does not want the same thing “please don’t waste my time or yours”.
Two men left me a message to call them. One I didn’t call and one I did. The one I called back left me a message which simply said “Sue, call me”. It was more a command than a request. After a lot of self talk and picking up and putting down the telephone I finally dialed the number.
After he remembered he left me a message he told me someone gave him a free coupon to join the dating service. We talked until it was time for both of us to get ready for work. We met for dinner at Penrod’s on South Beach on Wednesday July 14, 1993. Penrod’s restaurant is now Nikki Beach. He wore glasses, very handsome and carried a Time magazine. I was so nervous I just ordered mineral water. He leaned across the table and said “I think you are lovely”. That was it, I was in love.
It is October 17, 2011; my husband, Miguel, and I have been married for ten years. We have been together since that night at Penrod’s long ago in 1993. Our love for each other has never wavered and each day when he comes through the door I thank God. We have the little house, the white picket fence is brown, we were not blessed with children, but we have two Chihuahuas and they are our spoiled little babies.
Ricardo Rovira, Miami FL 33143 , “Mangrove Trail”
The mangroves at Matheson are heavy with morning light trying to break thru the spindly branches bundled with the night work of a thousand crab spiders that watch us as we bike past them with their thousand hungry eyes. My son, the arachnophobe, pedals faster and again asks why we didn’t take the high road, the smoothly-paved one without the rooty bumps or the pools of briny water or the broken branches groping at our feet, the high road that takes you where you want to go fast, no questions asked, no thousand eyes staring back at you, demanding that you slow down, that you dismount, that you stare right back and take it all in.
Leonard Erskine, Hollywood, FL, "Life is a Passing Parade"
Life is a perpetual Passing Parade
An odyssey the ultimate charade
An eye blink in the anals of time
A merry go round or just mime
With obivion just a heart beat away
We struggle and strive each day
As faces from your sight fade
You entrench and in piety wade
But the human spirit is dauntless
Prevailing no matter the duress
Just turn each adversity to gain
While we march to life’s refrain
Oh yes life is a Passing Parade
Our destiny not always self made
So high step it to the drummer
And make every day like summer
For you have one life to live
And so much of your self to give
The final march past will appear
But who cares,it’s naught to fear
Board the love boat and remain
As you wave to all in your domain
The Passing Parade will never end
So make the bestof life my friend
Allie Jacobson, NYC, NY, “MIAMI BITCH”
The young, gorgeous girl gazes across Collins Avenue, sitting in the back seat of her dad’s red BMW convertible. Her luscious dark locks are blowing daintily in her face and she is deep in thought while staring across the bay toward the rows of colorful houses, each perfectly lined with erect, warm palm trees.
Ah! This is Miami Beach, Florida, baby! Otherwise known as Nicky Rosetta Bean’s happy place! The Sunshine State where, “sunshine” belongs in the name to account for the amount of sun in the state.
Nicky Bean enters the Fountainebleau, her high-heeled poses, stealing glances from all the hottest people around the hotel. Nicky makes her biggest effort to take all her friends from small town Missouri and bring them to the hottest places to chill and party with friends. Daddy is nice enough to chauffer Nicky and her truly close friends around Miami Beach. Tonight, Nicky is wearing a truly elegant gown, golden, with matching gladiator sandals. However, she feels a little bit self-conscious with all the staring eyeballs all over the place. “I hope my hair isn’t burnt too much at the ends,” she thinks to herself.
Of course, the first thing that all the partiers at the poolside are thinking is, “Why is Nicky’s hair so dull?” “Why isn’t Nicky standing up straight?” Come on, Nicky! The world is depending on you to be a superstar tonight!
Hello?! Nicky? Whatever happened to the girl who wanted to change the world to help other people? The girl who cared more about preventing global warming rather than causing heat destruction? She’s headed toward a party in a gas-guzzler, which isn’t going to benefit anybody! The sad part of the story is that nobody is there to say what Nicky should really be worrying about.
Grace Denny, Kendall — “Night Swimming”