It would be easy to take for granted these common tropical sights: bougainvillea burgeoning above Burning Love; a yellow Geiger tree in full bloom; silver palms. But I don't. They become more precious because I'm getting ready to leave. Leave for the north, where children on bikes and scooters wear helmets. It's rare to see anyone with a helmet in South Beach, which may not be the best thing, but here kids fly, unencumbered.
As I strolled around South Beach today, I thought that the culture of the northeast is neurotic: we worry more. It's not easy to relax when spring is cool, when it might snow in March, when we shiver in April, and when a cold wind smelling of winter sails in in August.
Yet I like it up there in Neurotic Land--the edginess, the energy, those fraught moments and sleepless nights. No! Not the sleepless nights.