After two weeks in the States and the madness of New York, Florida is where we planned to have the holiday part of our holiday.
Fort Lauderdale is flat and full of pastel colours. It’s pretty tacky and kitsch, but lots of fun. Reminded me of a combination of East London, Port Elizabeth and Bloemfontein by the sea. Jason calls it shallowville. I like being shallow every now and again.
Many of the houses have flat roofs, which is either legacy of excited building during the seventies, or to protect against the annual hurricane season. Sweaty two-story motels bake all day in the sun — the kind of motels where bankrobbers go in Tarantino movies to divide their stash. My friend Jason reckons its in these motels where most of the world’s B grade-crime novellists hole out to pen their books.
The heat is relentless. The sun screams down at you. The light concrete roads create glare meaning you are blind without sunglasses. The sea is warm and calm. This place is all about holiday. More than 20 minutes in the sun and thick humidity puts you in a daze. It’s slowville in the heat.
Bridge and I stayed Jason’s apartment — an old friend of ours from Rhodes Unviversity and Cape Town. It was a rather hip, top-storey apartment along one of Fort Lauderdale’s many canals, also a short five minute walk from the beach. He’s been living out here in Florida as a bachelor for about 4-5 years incognito, living a life of excess and indulgence (ok i’m exaggerating)… so it was fun to blow his cover for a while.
We headed out with Jason and his sister, Kim, and her husband Darren and their family on a king-size, three room, three-storey catamaran cruise along the maze of canals around Fort Lauderdale, past the millionare houses on the waterfront. It’s the kind of yacht you’d have to rob the NYSE to afford.
We only had three days, but we also managed to squeeze in a trip to nearby Miami. It was difficult to imagine that I was going to “Miami”. Like — this place I hear about only in movies, actually exists….? It was mostly shopping on the famous Lincoln Boulevard and swimming and walking along South Beach.
(1) Quote by Jason (2006:Miami, US).