Wednesday, July 25, 2012


Finally went to the beach!!! Wohooo!!! FINALLY!!!

As I’ve mentioned before Plantation is a nice place, but it sucks not to have a car there because you’re basically stuck. Not much to do in the area and taking a bus will cost you half a day and you depend on their schedules, which are not as frequent as they could be. So what I did was I went to FLL Hollywood Int’l Airport this morning and got myself a car. A car!!! Wohooo!!! FINALLY!!! Those first 4 days here were a lesson I won’t forget which is that either you’re in a central and well-connected place or you get yourself a car. Glad I learned that and even more glad I brought my license with me.

Last night Ken, my CS host here in Plantation, gave me a few tips on how to find a good deal on a rental car in the area and Mari, my beautiful friend from Cartagena, who also happens to be here at this very moment, also chipped in with some information. In the end I found a not-that-cheap-but-definitely-affordable deal on an economic car from Payless Car Rentals and reserved it right away. This morning Ken helped me find my way through the maze of bus routes and schedules and I took the 1 hr 8 min trip to the airport (20min by car, that says it all…).

Once at the airport I had fun watching the girl at the rental counter try to figure out my Austrian driver’s license and once the payment had finally gone through (slow computers everywhere) I finally got to go to the parking garage to get my new baby: a white Hyundai Accent 2012. Wohooo!!! FINALLY!!! 

Then all I had to do was figure out how to work Ken’s GPS with the broken display which he was kind enough to lend me – try typing in addresses blindly, it’s fun! And then… all I had to do… was… (OMG) …remember how to freaking start an automatic car!!! NO!!!

Then I remembered, but I still had to drive. And the first 10min of that drive were pretty intense with me going crazy behind the wheel: “Fcuk, fcuk, fcuk, fcuk! What are you doing, car?! What is this?! No! Don’t do that, car! Stop! Fcuk, fcuk, fcuk, FCUK!!!” At the horrific speed of 50mph! Which is like 80kmh. Shut up.

After those initial 10min I was already used to driving an automatic and only had to wait for my right hand and my left foot to get used to it too. They were still hovering over the shift stick and the inexistent clutch pedal, respectively.

Really, the only remaining not-really-but-still difficulty with that car was the lady inside the GPS that kept telling me to keep to the right/left or take a right/left turn in 0.5 miles or 1.5 miles or 2 miles. I screamed at her repeatedly to let her know I didn’t know how much that was, but she wouldn’t listen. Well, we made it work. Or I did. By ignoring that part of the information she gave me. Wohooo? Whatever.

By the time I got to Hollywood Beach, obviously my very first destination, Mari was already waiting for me at the beach and it was so great to see her!!! After over half a year we met again!!! Wohooo!!! FINALLY!!!

She lent me her second beach chair so we sat in the sand (not really, though, because of the chairs) under her parasol enjoying the view of the waves and catching up on our lives. Tons of talking, especially about how we wished our mutual friend Béatrice could have been there with us. BÉA WE MISS YOU!!! Not wohooo. Definitely not. Oh and the water was wonderful too, all warm but still refreshing, a clear bright blue in the blazing sun. 

And there were cute little fishies in there, which everybody loves, of course. Who doesn’t like cute little fishies, right? We’d be swimming around or simply floating in the water enjoying the feel of it and they’d be zig-zagging around our feet, occasionally bumping into them, which was funny. Until, when we were in the water the second time, this bigger fish came around and bit me! He bit me!! Not hard, but he freaking bit me!!! How dare he, was all I could think after the first shock had worn off, because he did frighten me for a second. That was the fastest swim-to-shore I’ve done in a long time… What an ass, forgot who’s the food around here. I’ll show him! Although, no, I won’t. Somebody else will show him, because if I do it he might bite me again…

But apart from this highly traumatizing near-death-experience, the day was simply wonderful. And exactly what I’d needed. Got to spend time with my friend Mari (not for the last time though, we’ll hang out more while we’re both here), introduced her to my adored Arizona Iced Tea (and had lots myself), swam in the sea (which I’d missed so much during this time I was far away – 2hrs by bus is far, nobody can tell me otherwise) and had a yummy Chicken Cabana Sandwich right on Hollywood Broadwalk. No more being stuck in the apartment. No more waiting forever in case somebody who has a car gets in touch and wants to do something. No more being sad, because I can’t go to the beach… No more!!! Wohooo!!! FINALLY!!!

I’m mobile now! Watch out!! (Unless you’re the traffic police.)


  1. Ahhh, wish I was there, miss you too! Say hi and give a hug to Mari, please, and see you in September! :)