(There’s a podcast for this entry at the bottom of the page.)
I have two favorite streets in South Beach. One is a short, lesser-known block on the bay, called Monad. When I’m on it at dusk, I feel as if I’m not in Miami at all, but on a small, sleepy island in the Caribbean or the Keys. It’s also very romantic at 6am or in the rain.
The other street runs through the middle of the city and is known by most for its shadow-cast beauty: Meridian. I always love the sight of a palm tree, but if there’s anywhere that could have palm tree overkill, I’d say it’s Miami. Well, Meridian is lined with trees that you’d find in the woods, and they spill over the quiet lane, providing solace from the brutal sun. And on Meridian, is my favorite watering hole: Abraxas.
If there is ever a nonlocal in Abraxas that just happened upon the place, I would regard them highly.
Because for that to happen, this is what I imagine happens:
An intellectual loner, an in-love couple, or some jovial friends are taking a leisurely stroll through the neighborhood, with no urgent destination. As they get closer to Abraxas, they hear soft music, probably something Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, or the like. So they notice what looks like a sophisticated house party going on, but register by the discreet neon lit ‘Abraxas’ sign that it’s actually a venue, and are compelled enough to investigate further.
And the inside is as laid back as that.
The place reminds me of a specific house of some family friends in Pennsylvania; it’s spacious, a lot of wood, candles everywhere, and you can practically feel the history and warmth as soon as you walk in.
Chalkboards list wine and beer, and the bartender will all but offer to be your best friend (if they like you, of course).
Living room style couches beg you to settle in.
In the near-dark, great conversation is simply bound to happen by default.