Episode story by Ines Hegedus-Garcia, photo-graphics & editing by Boomer Jack Boardman
“Voyage of the Motor Vessel Sparrow” series inspired by Bob Carney.
Previously… Episode 78—MV Sparrow Arrives at Miami Beach:
Several minutes later, they were ready and in the main cabin. They were joined by Molly and Cob.
“Hi guys,” Ines greeted, “You will join us on our tour, no?”
“Where you going?” Molly asked.
“I’m showing off some of Miami’s unique home architecture,” Ines replied with a wide smile, “You’re welcome to join us.”
“Ahhh…” Molly began.
“…Mac, Molly and I,” Cob interjected, “we’re thinking of visiting some of my old Navy hangouts, Trigg and Armstrong are going with us.”
“Stay outta jail,” Bob admonished.
“I’m pretty good at that.”
“Hey, where’s Mac & Boomer?” Lysa asked, noticing their conspicuous absence.
“Getting the bikes unloaded,” Ines replied, “cheaper than renting a car.”
“And more fun!” Lysa laughed, “Remember Bob, wheels down, keep the wheels down!”
And now, Episode 79:
“I cannot believe we made it to Miami!!” Ines exclaimed, “This has been the best trip ever. Did you guys check out SoFi’s (South of Fifth) development on our way in Government Cut?”
“I’ve been dying to go visit your home Ines,” Sarah said looking out at the pier, “wouldn’t it be great if we could do some diving?”
“Oh what, you think Boomer is a magician with those graphics?” Bob asked, and continued, “I think you’re asking a bit too much…….ahem.”
“Are you sure you want me putting a mask on Bob’s face?” Boomer, having just returned from unloading the bikes, smiled, “Remember the sunglasses!”
“Oh come on guys, we’re getting off at The Miami Shores Boardwalk,” Lysa happily admonished, “Let’s get those bikes purring on Miami Streets!”
“You’d better behave, Bob,” Boomer, fastening Daisy’s “Doggie Ride-Along” restraints & securing her “Doggie Noggin” helmet, cautioned, “or I will make you wear a heavy jacket in 80º weather, and impossible to remove, sort of like sunglasses! Are we going to the Pink House Ines?”
“The Pink House?” Bob, laughing at Boomer’s admonishment, asked, “What is that?”
“Que pasa? Tú no lees mi blog?” Ines replied, “Deberías reconocer esta casa!”
“What’d she say?” Bob asked, “What did you say?”
“Just that you should probably read miamism,” Sarah replied quickly with a wicked grin.
“I musta missed that one!”
“I figured we could see one of Architectonica’s first works that’s right in Miami Shores (where I live, work and play),” Ines began, “Not many people know it’s here and it’s so famous that it appears in all the major Miami Residential design books.”
“Can we see the inside too?” Lysa asked, and then continued, “Hey you guys, put on those leathers, we don’t want any cases of ‘Miami Road Rash’ today!”
“It’s privately owned, but the owner has graciously let us in to see it,” Ines explained, “I’m hoping he opens the house for The Annual Heidi Hewes Chapter of the Woman’s Cancer Association that is held each December – if he reads this, it may be the deal clincher, let’s hope his Google Alerts is going off right now.”
Suffering no “Miami Road Rash,” the Danger Bay Motor Society made their way to “The Pink House.” Mildly surprised by the gaggle of raucous Harley-Davidson motorcycles pulling up in front of the house, he was indeed gracious, and guided our heroes through this remarkable structure.
“What an amazing house that was,” Sarah observed, as they prepared to move on to their next stop, “we certainly don’t have any of those in West Virginia.”
“The view is what got me,” Bob observed, “I don’t even remember what the house looked like.”
Ines, smiling, replied, “That’s exactly what happens to most people when they see the amazing bay views!”
“Where are we going next?” Lysa asked
“I was hoping Boomer would bring T to our next tour, knowing she likes historic architecture so much, maybe she’ll hover over us again?” Ines replied, donning her leathers, “We’re going to George Merrick’s house in Coral Gables.”
“Um, ‘T’ said something about ‘Lightning Bolts from Bloggious,’ that would prevent her from joining us. Out of all the historic houses in Miami, why did you pick ‘Merrick’s House’ Ines?” Boomer asked as he struggled into his safety gear, muttering to himself, “stupid two-legged leather chaps.”
“To me, Merrick was a visionary and the first one that brought the whole concept of home ownership in Miami to the rest of the country,” she explained, “His concept for Coral Gables in the 1920’s was to create ‘America’s Mediterranean.’ He saw Miami growing devoid of any plan or thought and he knew there had to be a better way. His home, which is now owned by the City of Coral Gables, can be toured and rented for functions.”
Firing up their not really all that raucous Harleys (they retained the standard mufflers), the “Society” moved on to Coral Gables.
Arriving at the George Merrick house, our heroes quickly shed their road rash preventing leathers and gathered in the front yard.
“Originally named Coral Gables,” Ines began, “this house is important for many reasons – one, it established great parameters for others to follow with regards to design, architecture, use of materials. I’m not going to bore you with all the details; I’ll just point out some important ones:”
- “The house is built of Coral Rock, a native material – which in good architecture is crucial. Why transport materials from other places when you can stay true to local materials?”
- “The wrap-around terraces and deep gabled roofs worked with the South Florida Climate and took advantage of breezes to make the house cooler in hot Summer months.”
- “This house was a good beginning for our Florida Vernacular Architecture which so many sadly ignore (The typical Key West home is a good example of Florida Vernacular).”
After touring the home’s interior, Ines asked, “So what do you guys think? We were able to see History as well as cool architecture – are you guys ready for some fun now?”
“I am still in awe of those coral walls!” Sarah exclaimed, “How in the world did they build it?”
“I’m not even going to say anything, next thing I know, I’ll have permanent goggles on my face,” Bob laughed, “I have been silenced!”
“Boomer, you have some power there with those graphics,” Lysa said quietly, “Whoda thunk it?”
“Ummm, me!” Boomer smiling broadly said, then turning to Ines, said with a hint of suspicion in his voice, “Did you just say “fun?” Ines? Exactly what do you mean by fun?”
“Let’s get back to the Sparrow,” Ines replied, “we have a surprise for you!”
No one, not even our “Motorcycle Safety Mama” Lysa wanted to again don the leathers, so they made use of “H.I.T.S.” and in an almost silent flash of light, they found themselves atop the main cabin of the Sparrow. The pups, Pepper & Daisy, tired from a day of touring and wearing their “Doggie Noggin” helmets, quickly trotted off for well-earned naps.
While standing on the deck of the Sparrow everyone heard a loud engine coming near, it was an orange and white “open fisherman” coming close. The boat’s pilot was waving and Ines started waving happily back.
He pulled up next to the Sparrow and said “Welcome to Miami! Who’s ready for Mojitos?”
Bob did not even think twice – He jumped aboard the boat and said while giving the pilot a friendly handshake, “You must be Rick, I’ve been hearing about your Mojitos for months now and can’t believe I will finally get a chance to taste them, even if they are only ‘virtual Mojitos’.”
“And you must be ‘gotbob’!” Rick replied.
“O-ho!” Bob smiled, “You must read my blog!”
“No, I read your t-shirt.”
“Woooo Hooo! Let’s go!” Lysa and Sarah looking at each other, exclaimed at the same time.
Rick drove the boat South to Boca Chita, an island South of Key Biscayne that can only be reached by boat. The beautiful Boca Chita Light House welcomed them…..
And thus ends of the Voyage of the Motor Vessel Sparrow of the Port of Danger Bay, Minnesota!
My sincere thanks to the “Real World” people who lent their likenesses, talents and good humor to this story:
Sarah “I’m SARAH COOPER DAMMIT” Cooper & Pepper Cooper
Guest Writers and Guest Stars: