Saturday, January 19, 2013

THE OTHER HOLLYWOOD: Penultimate day

Betty, Jon, David and I like the ponies.  A few times a year we go to the races.  In Chicago we visit Arlington Park; here, we go to Gulfstream but yesterday we spent a few hours in Hialeah Park - a historical racetrack in the heart of the Cuban neighborhood.  Not as fancy as Gulfstream but down to earth, Hialeah offered us the shortest races I've ever seen.  Before the horses started running they were done.  I lost a few times, then stopped betting.  The other three did well although nobody got rich. 

Going to the races is one of our traditions.  I enjoy seeing the faces of people when I tell them we like to go to the racetrack.  For some reason they don't quite see us as horse betters.  We also go to Calle Ocho where Jon and David buy cigars and we all drink cortaditos.  And we go to Coconut Grove.  Last night we had a fabulous dinner at Le Bouchon - duck confit for me, beef bourgignon (sp.) for David, entrecote for Betty and rack of lamb for Jon.  Good food but very crowded restaurant.  Before that we spent sometime at a wine bar across the street.

Another tradition is going to South Beach and Lincoln Road where last year we saw an almost naked man walking a bicycle in the midst of the crowds.  All he wore was a tiny thong the same color as his bronzed skin.  On Saturday mornings we go to Eurobread for croissants (although this morning I slept in).

It's good to have traditions, rituals.  Makes life predictable yet exciting.  Gives me a sense of history, of belonging.  Tomorrow we fly back to cold Chicago.  Other rituals await me there.

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