From April 13-15 in 2012 at the Ronald Reagan Equestrian Center at Tropical Park, the Miami International Agriculture & Cattle Show brought together cattle breeders and buyers from all over the world. Events included horse shows, rifle and handgun shooting competitions, and cattle shows.
Kids enjoyed mechanical bulls, hamster water rides, bounce houses and other activities. I am grateful that I missed it.
This April, I will also skip the Miami Beach Gay Pride Festival, the Stars on Ice Tour, the Sony Ericsson, Sean Paul, Chelsea Handler, Mogwai, Bruce Springsteen, and a tribute to Antonio Carlos Jobim.
Winter is a constant onslaught of Miami activity – this concert, that Arts Festival, this gallery, that Chili Cook-Off. Indeed, we are lucky getting ready for events yet to come, but much of what we love here is part of the everyday realm. Now it is our spring,
So recently, I dreamed I pedaled feverishly — feverishly like a Sunday morning — down Old Cutler Road and lo and behold, like boys taking off in ET or levitating like David Blaine, I woke up suddenly enamored.
Before awakening from the dream, I saw Sidney the flower guru – or the flower student as he likes to say, but not at his usual Tropicalia near IHOP. I also saw the Familia Longo near a beautiful wooden sign near a lake of extra virgin olive oil from an orchard in Uruguay. That’s not all. I was up to my neck in guacamole, caramel kettle corn, ribs, pickles and empanadas, and buried by organic bok choy, napa cabbage, Brazilian holly honey, orange juice, soap, raw food, pizza and a bearded brother selling rugelach. Dozens of men nearby wore short pants, spoke strange languages and leaped into the air kicking whatever they could. A gorgeous pond with bright purple water lilies, orange and black koi and bright blue fish beckoned me. Palms, heliconia, bromeliads, turtles – whew what a dream!
Except it wasn’t anything but another day in paradise – Sunday in Pinecrest. Zak the Baker, wife, father, cranberry-walnut bread – beautiful. Roc-Kat’s Loco for my Coco or Stone Age Chocolate plus intelligent music, art and music discussion between scoops at no extra charge – beautiful. Bee Heaven Farm’s little round orange cherry tomatoes – beautiful. A handful of organic purveyors – really beautiful.
This is not to say that everything in the Pinecrest farmers’ scene is perfect. Several stalwarts and originators have disappeared, all too typical and sad because this is a tale of two cities in Miami. Whenever anything is good, greed drives up the rent and cost of doing business. Let me say it plainly: This is no good. Ask Lincoln Road, Ocean Drive, Wynwood and Manhattan.
Furthermore, compared to Farmer’s Markets elsewhere — like in Marin County in California, one I recently attended in the shadows of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Civic Center, and in Berkeley not far from the University of California campus — we have miles to go before we catch up. And though change takes time, beauty is another question. Next Sunday — or any Sunday — from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., park your car in one of the world’s most beautiful parking lots and enjoy the bounty. Or, better yet, ride your bike.
Carl Rachelson is a teacher at Palmer Trinity School and a regular contributor to the Pinecrest Tribune. He may be contacted by addressing email to <firstname.lastname@example.org.