Monday, June 30, 2008

Baby Ribs

Once in a long while, I come here for lunch and people come to Tony Roma's for their ribs. Let's leave it at that. This restaurant is on US1 at the intersection with SW 67th Avenue.

Place for Ribs

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Done Deal!

For closure on the photo reports of this building, here is today's shot of its finished state, as compared to the previous photos during construction throughout 2007, in May 2007, and on March 02, 2007 which marked the second day of this Miami Everyday Photo blog. The newest one on the right is a sister to the one on the left, and the one seen in between is the older Datran building. The sky is getting crowded around here by the day.

Mission Accomplished

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Whatever Lola Wants

Here is Lola deep asleep. Lola comes here with her owner to play bingo, but she is obviously having a different agenda. Do dogs dream? Can they learn physics?

Friday, June 27, 2008

Cut Cut...

Here is a photo showing Tog's City Beautiful's workers in action. This is Blue Road in Coral Gables. The tree being serviced is in front of the City Beautiful's exclusive Country Club. I guess this is hurricanes season, and city officials want to make sure they are well prepared. The big banyan tree in the foreground looks like it suffered some trauma from former canes seasons.

Trimming Time

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Checkout Stations

This is one of several check out stations at the Home Depot store in South Miami. This store recently installed several "self service" stations for check out without the need of cashiers! Hi-tech a person that I am , I was scared to death the last time I used those stations, so this time, I patiently wait in line while the cashiers here are in deep conference to solve a tiny technical problem for the buyer on the right. I think cashiers in this store should have no fear to be replaced by the automatic check out machines. They DO NOT work!

Part of the American flag you see is the hint that the US is gearing up to celebrate its July 4th Independence day soon. I may climb up on the roof of my house, fighting the mosquitoes, to take photos of the fireworks on July 4th, but then again, I may not just because you can't tell if they are Miami's fireworks.


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Carica Papaya (bis)

The papaya, Carica Papaya L., is a member of the small family Caricaceae allied to the Passifloraceae. As a dual- or multi-purpose, early-bearing, space-conserving, herbaceous crop, it is widely acclaimed, despite its susceptibility to natural enemies which here in Miami mainly consist of the wasp-like papaya fruit flies, Toxotrypana Curvicauda which rhymes with "a real nuisance." The female deposits eggs in the fruit which will later be found infested with the larvae. This also is the problem that infects my guavas. Only thick-fleshed fruits are safe from this enemy. One remedy is to cover each fruit with a plastic bag, also a major pain in the neck, literally! I know, I do it for my "award winning" guavas, buy not for the papaya, because I don't like this fruit at all. Never ate them, and never will... wait a minute, I do eat this in the delicious green papaya salad ... I take it back! I will start to bag these too.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Canes Country

I was at a Miami auto tag agency today for a transaction that cannot be done on line, and I am glad I was because I did not realize that the State of Florida has so many kinds of specialty license plate for the consumers to choose from. All automobiles in Florida need to carry a license plate (only in the rear of the cars.) For an extra fee, the owners can select from a large choice of specialty plates. You name it, they have it, from protecting the whales to breast cancer awareness and of course all the sport teams and many other organizations are represented. This is a nice way to generate extra revenue. Me? I want to remind you that while in Miami, you are in HURRICANES country, and all the cars I ever owned here have the Miami Hurricanes special plate. You can see an example of it on the left upper shelf, and a small sample of the other plates on all the three walls of this office.

Plates and Plates

Monday, June 23, 2008

University Centre

Across from the main campus of the University of Miami in Coral Gables is this small strip mall "University Centre" on US-1 that has been here for many decades. Business come and go, but you can always find a Sound Advice and a Radio Shack store here. I only come here to visit the Radio Shack which is one of the few remaining such stores in Miami where I can get hard to find connectors and cables for my video and audio equipment. A friend of mine used to own a "Paradise Gym" business here.

Strip Mall

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Concrete Jungle

As time goes by, the skyline of South Miami looks more and more cluttered. These are mostly the new office/condominiums of the new Village of Dadeland. The cranes you see are at the construction site of the mammoth TownCenter One office building that is growing at break neck pace. I will have to find a way to have photos from the top floors of these high rises. If you happen to own or plan to own one of these units, let me know.

Crowded Skyline

Saturday, June 21, 2008

The End

The end is coming... After many weeks of heavy advertising in the surrounding streets to lure customers, this store is preparing to close its doors. The parking lot is packed today by people who look for bargain. Too crowded for me but it is a good scene for a blog.

Store Closing

Friday, June 20, 2008

Summer Camp

Every summer, the kids living in our city do not have to worry about getting bored. All sort of summer camp programs are available (for a fee) to kids of all ages. Here is an outing for the basketball summer camp. I count 5 adult coaches/supervisors for this small group. In the US, kids are kings, and the parents spare no cost to make sure they have the best things in life. Of course, this says nothing about kids in other cities or countries. I am sure they can find happiness in their own ways.

Basketball kids

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Big Bad Red

In Miami, sunny, hot and blue sky always return very quickly after stormy weather. It's a beautiful day in the city and the royal poincianas are all in bloom. This tree on Douglas Road (SW 67th Avenue) is my most favorite red/orange tree in town. It has not peaked yet, but I can't wait to have a photo of it. So there you have it now.

Best Red Tree

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Staghorn in storm

It's a very stormy day in Miami and it does not seem like a good day to shoot photos of the city. Not wanting to drive in this crummy weather, I am showing you a rain soaked backyard. The staghorn fern (Platycerium) must be about 30 years old and it grows in the top of the old oak tree trunk. It is ugly and pouring outside right now. The little bit of red you see casting in the gray sky is the flaming poinciana flowers. Water, water everywhere! Que d'eau!

Thunder Storms

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


Finally I got a Gibi to keep my Shadok company. If you don't know what I am talking about, you should Google "Shadok." The Shadok and Gibi I received as rare gifts are very hard to find figurine for the "connoisseurs." These are made of metal in limited signature editions. My Shadok is registered as # 2071 of 2141, and my Gibi is even harder to find at # 208 of only 1000. I love my Shadok and my Gibi!

My Shadok and my Gibi

Monday, June 16, 2008

Le Brie

In my local Publix supermarket in South Miami, in the new Village of Dadeland complex, you can find an abundant supply of fresh French cheese. From a commercial site, I can extract this excerpt "Below a downy white rind, Ile de France Le Brie offers a deliciously creamy texture and hazelnut aftertaste for a true French flair. Ile de France Le Brie makes a fresh baguette extraordinary. It also serves as a party staple served with fresh fruits, nuts or pistachios."

How do the French make their cheese, you may ask? Ask no more...

Starting from milk, after deaerating, it is sampled and pumped to silos. Raw milk is pasteurized and concentrated to triple its total solid content, then blended with whole milk and cream before being pasteurized again. Cheese milk from the pasteurizer flows directly to maturation (preincubation) tanks. When the acidity in a tank reaches the proper level, which takes 0.5 to two hours, the milk is pumped to the cheese vats. Fermentation in the vats is carefully monitored and when the pH reaches a certain level, an operator manually cuts it into 1.5-in cubes. This is when some particulates like bacon, onion and/or herbs are added for variety. When the specified final pH is reached, a vat is pushed to a dumper where 20-30% of the whey is removed from the top of the vat by vacuum, then the remaining curds and whey are dumped to a parallel conveyor.

The next morning, the cheese are lowered into brine tanks, where product remains for up to two hours then stored overnight at a slight angle to drain the brine, drying the cheese. Cheese remains in the curing room for seven to ten days. The packaged cheese is stored in a 37 degrees Fahreinheit cooler prior to shipment to the distribution center and to your home.

Yummy... Should I look up village Camembert's cheese or le Fromage?

Le Camembert, Le Fromage

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Marjory Stoneman Douglas Drive

I live just a block North of Sunset Drive, also known as SW 72nd Street, which recently acquired a third name "Marjory Stoneman Douglas Drive"

A short report was written by Richard Yager in Miami's Community Newspapers that is repeated verbatim in quotes below...

"For years, motorists have been reminded they were traveling “Marjory Stoneman Douglas Drive,” detailed by yellow lettering against the drab brown background of metal signs planted in swale areas of the 12.5-milelong SW 72nd Street (Sunset Drive) that begins at Cocoplum Circle in Coral Gables and goes west to 167th Avenue.

Now, a stone marker proclaims SW 72nd Street (Sunset Drive) as a “Historic Road,” a more permanent way to honor Miami- Dade’s prominent environmental author. Located on a grassy island, the lightly toned, 6- by 10-foot concrete marker with raised black lettering faces westbound traffic at a Palmetto Expressway (SR 826) northbound entry ramp to memorialize her conservation efforts.

The marker dedication took place during the anniversary month of Ms. Douglas’ birth (April 1890 in Minneapolis, MN), and nearly 10 years following her death on May 14, 1998, after a lifetime of conservation efforts, most permanently championed in her landmark environmental book, The Everglades: Rivers of Grass, published in 1947."

Here it is in a photo taken today. The stone marker reads:

"SW 72 St.
Sunset Drive
Marjory Stoneman Douglas Drive
Historic Road"

Historic Road

Saturday, June 14, 2008


In Miami, Marshalls is one of several off-price discount department stores. This one is on US-1, across from the Falls shopping mall. I rarely go there, if ever, except when being forced to like this time. I can always use the time to shoot some photos.

Discount Department Store

Friday, June 13, 2008


Pinecrest was incorporated on March 12, 1996 and is one of thirty-four municipalities in Miami-Dade County. Pinecrest is home to approximately 19,460 residents and is conveniently located twenty minutes south of Downtown Miami and Miami International Airport. Pinecrest encompasses approximately eight square miles and is recognized as one of the most beautiful residential areas in South Florida. This beautiful home in Pinecrest is typically of houses in this area. In the past, most houses in Miami have wide open yards. Now, the majority has walls and gates to enhance privacy. You can see the two bottle palms in the luxurious landscape at the front of this house and Tog will tell us the names of the two beautiful flowering trees.

Beautiful Home

Thursday, June 12, 2008

White Cats

These large white cattleya orchids in my backyard bloom at this time, despite the fact that they are totally neglected. The Cattleya orchid species are known affectionately as "Cats." I can't remember if it is spelled with 1 or 2 "t."

White Cattleyas

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

I missed you so ...

I was at the newly opened terminal "J" for international flight arrivals at the Miami International Airport today. This moving reunion was the longest kiss I have ever witnessed. The man came to greet his apparent woman love of his life and the two embraced and kissed as if they were all alone in this world. The kiss was finally interrupted by a long convoy of luggage carts that need to be pushed through. Wow! That's LOVE!

International Arrival

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Telosma Cordata Blooms

It took a while, but I wanted to show you the blooms of the Telosma Cordata. They shape like perfect green stars, look unpretentious but have a mysterious sweet scent that's hard to describe. It's the smell of romance.

Finally Opened

Monday, June 9, 2008

Cassia Fistula

Miami had many of these flowering trees called "Golden Shower Trees" that bloom beautifully in June... until hurricane Andrew came by in August, 1992. As a consequence, there are only a few of these trees left to bloom in Miami because they are not designed for strong winds. This one is near the South Miami Hospital, in full bloom ... I wonder why the city does not replant these beautiful trees?

Golden Shower Tree

Sunday, June 8, 2008


Summertime, and the Jackfruits are easy!


Saturday, June 7, 2008

Biscayne Bay

It's a beautiful day to go sailing in Biscayne Bay. The small sail boats apparently are participants of a single sail tiny boat race. In the center of the photo is the golden dome of the Miami Seaquarium. To the left, across from the Rickenbacker Causeway is NOAA (National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration) building where research is conducted to learn more about the US national weather. To the right of the dome is the world famous Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences (RSMAS) of the University of Miami. The bridge to the right spans what is called Government Cut. Virginia BEach is just beyond, on the far side. It used to be a nude beach. Sorry, folks, that is no longer the case nowadays.

Government Cut

Friday, June 6, 2008

Fresh Fruits

It's an injustice just to show the "Fresh Market" from the outside, so here is a snapshot inside, showing their fresh fruits display. In case you did not know, this is in Coconut Grove. I got some huge fresh cherries from here. They are delicious and only can be found here. It's not cheap, but you get what you pay for.

Fresh Fruits

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Thank You!

Twice a week, our trash and garbage are picked up and disposed of. This service is what Miami can depend on no matter what. This happy man knew that I was taking photos so he was showing off his workmanship (and happiness in doing his job.) Miami has begun to issue the blue standardized trash cans to be used as containers for trash and they make the city that much more beautiful. Thank you for your hard work.... Did you see the bougainvillas on the wall? So colorful!

Happy Worker

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Thousand-Mile vine

These are the first blooms of this new Telosma Cordata vine. Its blooms also signify the start of the hurricane season and its tiny flowers are fragrance, but only at night. These will open in a few days. By the way, this vine is a fast grower but it really is not a thousand mile long. That is just its romantic name.

Telosma Cordata

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The Falls

The Falls shopping mall is in South Miami. The shops are positioned to surround a very pleasant landscape of lush tropical shrubs and water falls. On the left, you can see the familiar name of a Victoria's Secret store.

The Falls Shopping Mall

Monday, June 2, 2008

Store Closing

It's tough to open a store in Miami, and it's even more difficult to keep it opened. This Linens-N-Things store in South Miami is closing its doors, only to confirm the bad rumors I heard of its poor customer service.

Closing Shop

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Fresh Produce Brothers

For over twenty years, Norman Brothers has served South Florida with the "fresh approach" to specialty foods and produce. This is my favorite local store for fresh fruits. It is on Galloway Road (SW 87th Ave., just South of Sunset Drive (72nd Street.)

Norman Bros