A few weekends ago, a friend and I decided to pack our chanxs and take a post-birthday trip to my hometown of Miami, Florida. Even though the weather was finally warm in Chicago, I was excited to go home for the weekend to drink strong coffee, eat my weight in Cuban bread, and of course, see my dog… and family, too, I guess.
I took this trip to take in every aspect of home. I know you might be thinking, why would you move from beautiful Miami to cold, windy Chicago? Well, let’s backtrack a few years.
When I was in high school, all I wanted to do was leave. I was more than ready to pack my bags and start a new adventure. I felt that I had my future planned out for me if I stayed. I would go to college with the same people I met growing up, I would live with my grandparents until I got married, and maybe be able to drive the car, but I was stuck in this big city in the same old routine. I craved ambiguity and freedom. I counted the days until graduation, then I hopped on a plane as quickly as I could to create a new home for myself. I was excited for my future!
It’s funny how life works, because I tend to miss Miami all the time. Ever since I left home, I have really gained a sense of appreciation for Miami. Miami is a place like no other — a true melting pot of cultures. I appreciate the smell of espresso, the warmth of the sand on my toes, and even the traffic on I-95 at 4 pm.
I often catch myself wishing that I had appreciated home more while living there. I wished that I had gone to the beach more, eaten at more trendy, overpriced cafes, and taken advantage of free laundry. But, if it wasn’t for my eagerness to leave, I wouldn’t be where I am today.
Miami has shaped me into the woman I am today and everyday I carry it on my sleeve. I keep the pero like and (embarrassingly enough) the supposabley i n my vocabulary. I will always get excited when a Pitbull song come on and 3:05 is always cafecito time.
During my last trip, I hit up all my favorite spots. I took a stroll through Coconut Grove and the Barnacle State Park. I stopped by Versailles for Cuban sandwiches, mojitos, and pastelitos (if you are ever in Miami, best Cuban food hands down–don’t tell my Abuela). What’s a trip to Miami without brunch in Wynwood walls? I took advantage of finally being 21 and had drinks in Brickell and danced the night away in South Beach. And of course, I snuggled my dog tight and hugged my Abuela even tighter.
No matter how crazy life gets and where I may move, Miami will always be in my heart and it will always be my home. My visits home always come when I need them most, and the universe always brings me back to the sunshine.
Until the next Miami,