Where did I leave things? Oh yeesss....the vacation.
Do you think I was:
A) Lying in the sun
B) Being served drinks poolside
C) Falling in love every single day
D) None of the above
The correct answer would be "D." And if you answered this correctly, you were in on the joke.
And if I were to start at the beginning of the story....
I awoke on the early side of Wednesday morning to catch a 7 AM flight. I groggily pulled my shit together and got on an airline that I had never been on before. And admitedly never heard of. I relied on Mav's mad booking skills to get us a dealio.
Once I am on the plane and look around I half expected Spike Lee to jump out of the director's chair and yell, "Cut!" It was a scene of the pants belted down below the ass. The baseball caps on crooked. The swagger. The girls squeezing into too-tight, too-small, too-short clothing encased like sausages. I was the token white chick in this Spike Lee cinematic feature. So I brought out my iPod and put on my white girl music.
Once I arrived at the Fort Lauderdale airport where Mav and I were meeting up I had to ask her, half-jokingly, "What kind of ghetto airline did you book me on?" She didn't understand because she flew out earlier in the week for business. Apparently everyone on her flight had their pants pulled up and their baseball caps on straight.
This should have been Clue #1.
We grab a shuttle to our hotel. We even chat up with some nice local girl who gave us tips on what bars to go to. Thanks nice girl! And we are two giddy girls thinking, "This trip is going to be fun! Wee!"
We walk into our hotel and it is - again - a ghetto scene. Spike Lee is following me?
This should have been Clue #2.
We settle the room debacle at the front desk because the clerk only reads what's in her computer and when there are two identical reservations she goes on the blink. We rebooted her and all worked perfectly. We get to our hotel room and The Count has sent us a bottle of Cristal to partake on Mav's birthday. This bottle will - appropriately - loom large over the weekend as "the Cris."
This should have been Clue #3.
Since the sun is not out we head out to "sight see" but not before we make ourselves a big helping of Sapphire and Soda in a to-go cup. Waiting for the elevator we chat up a fellow hotel guest. A Spike Lee extra. He had a grill* with his name inscribed in each tooth. t-y-r-o-n-e.
We asked him where he was from? And he slanged out, "Na-uhsh-villlle." Followed up with, "It's great down here and I didn't even know there was no beach here!"
The way he said it was like he was just given a buy-one-get-one-free deal. BOGO. It is catchy.
Yet we thought nothing of this urban denizen holding his pants up but not too much so you could get a nice helping of the boxers in view. These crazy kid's style! Spike Lee, where is Wardrobe?
This should have been Clue #4.
We ventured out down the pier to walk into South Beach. At every pier corner there were hip hoppers staking out their corners. It was a friendly pier-corner-type loitering. Spike Lee left the violence at the door.
This should have been Clue #5.
So that night we feasted on the best steak of my life at a gentlemen's steak house. Dark paneling. Cigars. Men with credit. Surprisingly no hip hoppers. Spike let us out of character for the night.
And so for that night we forgot about the weird Twilight Zone we had passed through over the course of the day. The crowd here looked respectable so we sat at the bar, of course, so we could meet and chat up our neighbors. And that we did. Some nice CIA and/or FBI gentlemen. Locals. One happend to be a hotty and when he asked for my phone number, I gave him my work phone number. Who does that? Stupid Me does. But Mav is savvy enough and passed out her cell to one of the gentlemen.
When they called the next night to ask us over for a barbecue I mouthed to Mav, "Say no." See, what I was thinking was that we don't want to tie ourselves down to the first guys we meet here. No on our first night. We still have 4 more days! Let's go out tonight and meet some others!
It's that always-looking-for-something-better deal or let-me-just-see-what-else-is-around-the-corner - that the guys do anyway.
This is when Karma bit us in the ass big-time. Because there was not going to be anything remotely akin to meeting anybody "better." Because this is when we learned the big secret.
To my dismay we were not in a Spike Lee movie. We were in the midst of "Hip Hop Weekend." Every Memorial Day - apparently - South Beach shuts down. The locals leave and Lindsey Lohan certainly doesn't show up. Have you seen how pasty that girl is?
The hot spots that are usually The Place To Be, were dead to all in the world but two silly little girls looking for a good time. We stayed away from the clubs. Not into that scene. We dined rather well. Reservations weren't really necesarry. The bartenders and waiters and waitresses chatted us up usually starting the conversation with, "What are you girls doing in town?"
My best response for this?
"We were not in on the joke."
I failed to mention throughout this timeline that it is STILL RAINING! So sunbathing was out of the question DURING THE WHOLE FIVE DAYS too. (Well, there was one window of opportunity on Saturday.) And our hotel - in character - was ghetto as we had no hotel bar so each day was an adventure. The challenge of finding a bar to saddle up to. We met a bunch of interesting characters. The Judge and his mistress. Even the one 22-year old puppy dog who wanted to ditch her friends - who were down for Hip Hop Weekend - and hang with us because, "..ohmygod, I can't believe you guys are in your 30's - you are so cool [we were walking around with our gin flasks] - and you guys look so great too [like you let yourself go in your 30's]."
In the end, I needed the proverbial 'vacation from my vacation.' But, oh yeah, I still had to move.....
*Spike Lee says your teeth are called grills.