Exactly one month ago today I was in my final week of employment in Orlando, having accepted a position with Miami-Dade Transit, scheduled to begin on March 11. So the “plan” was to resign effective February 22, with a two-week respite before cranking it up on South Beach. I had contacted realtors and had some money set aside to fund my move south.
Then my mother passed away on February 19.
Whoops. So much for that plan.
An emergency trip to Ohio and a funeral on February 22 extended my stay in Orlando one week, which reduced my time between jobs to one week. In Orlando on March 1, be ready to rock in Miami on March 11. And the money I had set aside for the move? Had to use that to get me & my brother to Ohio to say goodbye to mom.
Money well spent.
But it also meant my plans for a killer bachelor pad in South Beach turned into an extended stay hotel room in Homestead. Ain’t gonna be rubbing elbows with LeBron any time in the near future. More like buying vegetables from Jesus on Krome Avenue.
But it’s all good. That’s what makes life fun. Remember, life is weird. And it cannot be predicted. Can’t really even be planned for. I had meticulous plans for this Orlando-to-Miami relo that got snuffed out when my mother took her last, long breath.
But I made it. I’m here in Miami, in my second week in my new job.
And I love it.
Not just the job and the people (which are both great), but the city. Miami is the shit, yo.
Now. I will let you in on a little secret. I am a closet Urbanista. When I took the job in Orlando, having moved there for Port St. Lucie, I had visions of being an uber urban hipster. I was going to get a place near my downtown office and either walk or take transit to work. As it turned out I found a place in Altamonte Springs and was essentially forced to drive to work. Well, I could have taken transit, but it would have taken 90 minutes to traverse 9 miles.
I ain’t that hardcore.
So. Back to Miami. As mentioned, I had to go to my fallback plan of living in Homestead instead of Brickell. But…Miami ain’t Orlando. Translation: traffic is insane down here. Yeah I know it’s bad in O-Town too, but this is a different world down here. Transit isn’t an alternate, green way to get in touch with your inner environmentalist around here. It’s a way to maintain your sanity.
And sane I am.
Every morning I catch an express bus that operates on a dedicated busway that parallels US 1 to the Dadeland Metrorail station for a 20-minute whisk into downtown. A 35-mile commute in just over an hour.
Let me repeat that: A 35-mile commute in just over an hour. To downtown Miami. You literally cannot drive it faster…let alone what you have to pay to park downtown.
Oh, and it’s free for me. Cuz I work for the transit system.
Jealous yet? No?
Then drive on with your bad self.
For me, it’s awesome. I have re-familiarized myself with my ipod & various websites as I peruse and rock out while someone else deals with traffic. My blood pressure is lower, my spirits higher.
And my wallet’s fatter.
I work in downtown Miami and live 35 miles away. And I never set foot in my car to make the trip. What about lunch, you say? What about needing my car during the work day?
Dude, we got Metrorail that runs every five fuckin’ minutes to take me to Brickell. And an automated People Mover that sallys around the downtown high-rises. Transit rules here. And I am taking advantage of all of it.
I am finally an Urbanista.