The first thing that hit us when landing in Fort Lauderdale was the heat and humidity. Even though it was already evening, it felt like hitting a wall.
The weather in Rhode Island had been very comfortable, but here we were in a very different climate and that takes a little time to get used to.
The same evening we landed we met with Oli, who is a childhood friend of Benni. He has lived in the USA for close to two decades so he was the best person to give us an insider view of Florida. He and his wife, Cristina and their son Leo took us to a family BBQ and invited us for a great dinner at home. We also toured the operations of Oli´s business – Boatside services – at the Fort Lauderdale harbor.
During our visit we planned two golf rounds with Oli, but had to give up on the first one after 11th hole as we had a thunderstorm and lightings hitting all around us. The second one we managed to finish, but got pretty wet by the end as it rained on us on the last three holes. We still very much enjoyed the course, which is called Plantation Preserve.
We also met up with Benedikt´s nephew, Valdi, who lives with his family in Miami. We hit two restaurants with him and agreed that the Japanese/Thai one was really fantasic. It is always fun to meet family and friends abroad.
Our earlier reference to Miami unfortunately comes from a very lame TV program many years ago, called Miami Vice. We recognized some of the “pillars” from that program and got to know that Miami has gone through some really tough times. Even if Florida is the Sunshine state, Miami is called the Hurricane city of the world and has been hit badly several times. The great depression also hit hard there and now we could see the “aftermath” of the financial breakdown in 2008. Many half build skyscrapers and apartment blocks.
It looks like the wheels have started to turn again and those buildings will eventually be finished. We saw several buildings where LeBron James, the big NBA star, is a key investor and seems to be doing good things for the community.
On tour around Miami Beach we visited Mitch Felton. Mitch and Laura Kall have recently purchased a spectacular apartment in a brand new and surely one of the most impressive high-rises on Miami Beach across from Bal Harbour shopping mall, THE destination for high end shopping. Mitch had come from Connecticut ahead of Laura and he showed the view over both the ocean and the city. Later that night we all met at a meeting with Nathan Ricks. It was great to meet everyone there, including Ian Ziering and other Nu Skin leaders that are travelling around actively building their businesses.
We have no intentions of moving to Miami, but we surely love to visit again some time when the climate is a bit cooler. We also have many more golf courses to play there.