Angle to Key West: Miami (3/19-3/25)


Miami, FL – March 19-25, 2013

Miami is loud. It’s a dozen conversations at once, packed Cuban restaurants on Calle Ocho, and birthday celebrations. It’s cousins and more cousins, hugs and kisses on cheeks, aunts and uncles, and late dinners around familiar tables. It’s fried yuca, grilled fish, and lechon asado. It’s four generations in my grandmother’s kitchen, loud voices in two languages, and beloved stories that fit like old clothes.

It’s laughing at old pictures with cousins, seeing kids grown up, and meeting new additions. It’s black beans and rice, croquetas, ropa vieja, and maduros. It’s my parents driving down, breaking news that I’m not finished, and worried words and prayers from loving faces. It’s days filled to the brim, time slipping by, and knowing I have to leave. It’s retooling equipment, fixing gear, and researching the new route. It’s soft beds, hot showers, and air conditioning. It’s lunches, dinners, feeling forever full, and twenty extra pounds on my frame. It’s last hugs, my aunt slipping a few dollars in my hand as I drop into the boat, and saying goodbye.

It’s my uncle waiving as I pass downtown, my cell phone ringing, and his voice as excited as a kid’s while he watches his nephew paddle north.

It’s love. It’s family. It’s Miami.

7 thoughts on “Angle to Key West: Miami (3/19-3/25)

  1. Yes, the warmth of family. It does feel like that embracing warmth has been there for you elsewhere in this great journey, starting in Minnesota. It is comforting to know all of us are capable of that energy.

  2. Sorry I have not made time to follow your journey since we met months ago in Saint Louis but I am delighted to have logged on in time to see how it ends. Your Miami parientes sound lovely and I wish you well on the last leg to the Keys.

  3. Sorry Ive never commeted on your adventure to Key West. This will be my first, although Ive followed your daily blogs for the last year or so now and I must say your an inspiration to us all. Ive always wanted to paddle the savannah river and after following you for so long a few friends and I are going to make that leap. Its not nearly the adventure you have set out to accomplish but its the largest one I have ever done. We will be traveling 200 miles + down the savannah river from my home town of augusta to tybee island.. So I just wanted to say thank you for giving me the courage to follow one of my dreams.

    1. That is fantastic! Good luck on the adventure! I always say that adventure comes in all sizes, it doesn’t have to be a multi-month journey, it can be an afternoon walk, a weekend, whatever looks interesting and gets you excited. Have a blast on the Savannah river! If you’re hungry when you get to Savannah to eat lunch at Miss Wilks! There will be a giant line, but you will leave happy and full! Paddle well out there and let me know how it goes and if there is anything I can do to help!

  4. suffering from withdrawal … post map is stuck in the middle of the country … ¿R U OK? … photo map is stuck in Louisiana … suffering from withdrawal …

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