Tag Archives: BMW

So. How You Liking Miami?

Over the last few days several people have asked me the same thing.  It’s always with hesitation they ask.

“So.”

l o n g        p a u s e      h e r e

“How you liking Miami?”

Then I swear they hold their breath and squint their eyes.  Waiting for me to sucker punch them or something.  It’s quite odd.

My response?

It’s fine.  Honestly, I have nothing to really compare it to logically.  It’s completely different from anything I’ve experienced in the last 18 years.  Below, I thought I’d take a moment or ten, to tell you what I think…..

First off.  It is the polar opposite of living in Juneau, Alaska.

  1. People here use umbrellas.  In Juneau, we use the hoods on our coats and tough it out.    A little rain never hurt anyone.
  2. However, the rain in Miami is a torrential downpour that floods streets and the car wipers don’t go fast enough.  Thunder, lightening and rivers…..30 minutes later and we’re done with the rain.  Out of Mother Nature’s system and moving on to better things.
  3. Lots of things I don’t need to see.  Such as that lady’s nipple, as she waited for the crosswalk signal.  Her bikini top was just a little off kilter.  Or that lady in front of me on my golf course walk, with the wrinkled and saggy skin…..with her short shorts tucked up on the sides under her thong (not kidding) so anyone behind her could see the loose bags of skin that used to be her butt cheeks…..but more like an overcooked potato skin….flopping around under her shorts.  She would have made a better impression keeping the shorts down and covering the cheeks.
  4. I’ve never seen so many BMW, Audi, Mercedes, Lamborghini, Maserati, Porsche, Lexus and Cadillacs in one area.  So much so that I have forgotten what a Subaru looks like, let alone a pick up truck.
  5. If you are trying to grow an alien out of your stomach, hip or butt…..please, encase that in spandex, we all need to see that.  And it’s better if you can encase it in spandex that has horizontal stripes.  See below:
  6. One day I went to work in a new work outfit.  Gone are the jeans and hiking boots.  I now wear dresses, skirts and platform heels.  I texted my cousin and said, “I think I picked the wrong skirt it seems tight and short.”  Her reply, “you are in Miami it’s all about butts and boobs.”  Noted.
  7. The land of 18 languages.  Russian, French, Czech, Yiddish and oh yeah… Spanish.
  8. Hey!  It’s not all Asian food here!  What a break!
  9. It starts to drizzle and the traffic slows down from 80 mph to 40mph.  I’m the only one weaving in and out of traffic at that point.
  10. Whole cases of freshly cut fruit at the grocery stores.  Not to mention the celebrity sightings there too.
  11. Beaches without rocks.  A novelty.
  12. Sunshine.  Lots of sunshine.
  13. I can get a manicure for $15.00 and a full service pedicure for $20.  Seriously.  With a massaging recliner chair to boot.
  14. Costco…..easily twice the size of ours.  I can get my prescription, fresh flowers, produce, gas, eyeglasses AND funeral casket all in one place.

It has been interesting.  Yes, living in the suburbs of Miami definitely has it’s challenges.  The traffic is something fierce but you learn to work around it.  The people aren’t always the nicest but you deal with it.  For example if I start talking to people in the grocery or Costco people automatically know I’m not from here and it either gets them interested in where I’m from or causes them to choose another check out lane.

My job is great.  I love my job.  It’s tough.  Every day is a challenge and you don’t know what’s coming next.  I’ve never slept so good – all because I’m mentally drained by the time I get home at night.

Working for a giant company is definitely odd.  The closest thing I have to compare it to is working for the State of Alaska.  Huge machine and we’re only responsible for the left big toe portion.  I’ve met two of the presidents, which is very exciting.  One of which thought I brought a great conversation to the table!  Okay!  Believe it or not he is British and I actually got about every third word he said —- rather than my usual every sixth word.

I laugh a lot every day and yet there are still lots of things I need to learn.  When the VP says, “DO IT.”  I at first think, “really?  He can’t be serious.”  No, really, he is serious.  This is soooo backwards from what I’m used to that it takes me a bit to roll it around before I swallow and say, “okay, well if he’s serious, then hell yeah!  Let’s do this.”

Many times people have asked me, “what do you do on the weekends?”  I am here by myself and it makes people worry about my sanity and social life.  The first thing I tell people is this is the SECOND time I’ve packed up and moved somewhere I didn’t know anyone or anything.  How do you think I ended up in Alaska for 18 years?  I’m a Philly girl!  Come on!

Second thing I have to tell people:  I’m an only child.

I was taught to fend for myself since third grade.  True.  While others in this world need outside people to complete them….I am comfortable doing my own thing, on my own time at my own speed.  Often times people are dumbfounded when I tell them I do all kinds of things by myself.

I take myself out to dinner and not just fast food.  Sit down, order a glass of wine, salad, dinner etc.  When I walk up to the hostess stand I always tell them, “I am a giant party of one.”  The facial expression is priceless!  What a relief!

I have gone to movies and art museums by myself.

I have even gone to theatre productions by myself in major cities.

It’s no big deal to me.  I can do it.  Contrary to what is difficult to lots of people in this world…..I am very, very comfortable being with myself.  By myself.  I don’t need a giant circle of people to validate me or my actions.  Here I am….love me or not….it’s not my problem.

Yes, I have a small circle of friends, around this globe and they are what matters.  I don’t need a huge friend base of 200 people to make me feel valued or accomplished.  I’ve been doing this since I was 8 years old and I’m proud to say I’m quite independent.

So when people are astonished I can do this life in Miami, by myself, I am perplexed because to me, this is a huge adventure.  I may take myself on a 3 mile walk and enjoy my thoughts or music as I go.  Maybe I will drive to Barnes & Noble and get lost for a few hours in the shelves of books.  There’s a great movie out….maybe I will treat myself to snacks and a glass of wine then hit the movie.  I have signed up for Conversational Spanish at the college and have a GroupOn for pole dancing lessons – all on my own.  No big deal.

I go to the gym at work during the week – first thing in the morning.  Do my work, on the third floor of the 1080 building until 6:30 or 7:00 at night and head home.  At home I cook a nice healthy meal, watch some tv or read….play Words with Friends and then off off to bed.  Rewind and repeat the next day.

The complex I’m in has a pool, if I should choose to jump in, but that’s not for me yet.

Yes, there are massages and nail appointments.  My new hair stylist Greta is great!  I have been to the beach once in all my time here….go figure.  But have enjoyed my balcony and potted plants just as much.  I have my usual weekly chores and food shopping to get through.  Snore.

It all comes from how you were raised.  My mom made me a strong and very independent person – which I am proud to be in this world.  Yet there are times when I think, “what the hell?”  Those moments come from not having experienced this life style before and just having to get used to the flow of things.

When I moved to Alaska I had no clue what Xtra Tuffs were – and I have my second pair with me now.  My co-workers are often teaching me about local customs and flavors, which is fantastic.  “OH, you have to try this Cuban dessert.”

I truly enjoy my coworkers sharing their local knowledge – especially the Cuban side of things.  As it turns out, my great-great- great grandparents were from Cuba.  They owned a tobacco plantation.

So see, I’m not so foreign in this land after all!

I Won…I Won…I Won….I Won!

It doesn’t take much to make me happy….

Tell me I’m “East Coast Beautiful” – whatever that means.
Let me be right about something for a change.
Write on my FB page that I never cease to “amaze you with my creativity.”

Or let me finally win a place in the annual Wearable Art Show!

Finally, my fourth year and I managed to eeek out a third place win on day two! Yahoo!

Yes, I’m from the east coast, so there’s always that competitive drive that rumbles from within, however it isn’t like a blaring siren for me. You know what I’m talking about.

There’s the women, who at a baby shower, will buzz in to answer the Baby Jeopardy questions faster than an Amway representative can ring your doorbell with desires to talk to you about how you too can make millions.

Or the women who nearly knock out front teeth trying to get the stupid bouquet at a wedding. Really, you want to get married that badly? Wow.

The east coast is filled with what I call the “one-uppers.” That’s one of the reasons I left. I was exhausted trying to keep up with the Mary’s, Lisa’s and Cindy’s…..let alone what would have happened if I stayed, got married and then had to compete with the Jone’s, Smith’s and Wilson’s!

In the cheetah race of life, I’m more like the silent fox who waits on the side to pounce when the moment of opportunity aligns with my emotional well being and sense of humor. If Mary bought a BMW, good for her…but I’m completely happy with Norman, my fire engine red, Toyota Yaris….he’s a bad ass in my eyes. I’m not planning on being identified by the car I drive….it’s a car!

My perfect house is a cute Cape Cod somewhere, near the water, with a deck overlooking a private backyard, with fire pit, lots of trees and birds. I’m more concerned with having room for wild rabbits, porcupines and deer or bears than I am with if my yard is bigger and better than Matt and Kate’s next door. I don’t need a 5 bath, 7 bedroom mansion with gated driveway. I really want peace, quiet and privacy. Besides I don’t have to dust and clean….peace, quiet and privacy…

What matters most is if I enjoy my little world. If my world is happy, then I am happy.

So for four years I have applied my creative talents to this fundraiser art show – because it makes me happy. My creations have taken upwards of six months to create. The art shows cause me to go through the 3 S Program. I know you’ve been through this program as well. The 3 S Program: Sweat, Swear and Stress. Amazingly enough I think the rate of hair fall out has dropped dramatically since the conclusion of the event.

2010 Wearable Art Show

It makes me happy to create a vision. What annoys the hell out of me is when everyone isn’t treated on a level playing field. Hence the competition drive kicks in and I start to yell like a banshee. You see, each year a design is entered by The Wood Man. His designs are fabulous. Fabulous to the point of winning INTERNATIONAL Wearable Art awards. Yes, first place in the INTERNATIONAL Wearable Art Show.

You’d think he’d be given a private spotlight in our local show – to showcase his masterpieces – because they are quite stunning. However, no….he’s just another artist in the show, along with the rest of us struggling peons. Somehow, that’s not right.

The struggling peons should show with the other struggling peons.
We shouldn’t have to be crushed by the INTERNATIONAL winner and flatted like a stick of gum under a paving truck on a hot summer day. We have no chance when lined up next to the Wood Man.

So again, this year, I take my most fantastic self and design to the show. All along thinking: what is Wood Man doing this year? Just once let me fly past him like a lioness on a hot pursuit of an antelope dinner.

2011 Wearable Art Show

2011 Wearable Art

The show was fantastic! We raised thousands of dollars for the local arts center. I was having a ball of a time. My outfit included confetti cannons being shot into the crowd. I had a headpiece that was worthy of a Vegas show and an starting outfit that could have walked along with the Philadelphia Mummers.

Finally, I spy the Wood Man’s creation. Really? That can’t be right. Where’s the wood? What happened? Is that wire? Huh.

You can imagine the mayhem in my house on Monday night….after learning I placed third for the Sunday show. Cat hair was flying, heels were kicking up, small pets were scurrying for cover and shots of chocolate vodka were on high demand in celebration as I ran around yelling, ” I WON I WON I WON I WON!”

Sadly, The Wood Man did not place – on either day.

Did I mention? I WON I WON I WON!